Nashville Predators: Poile Proves Something With Arvidsson Trade

Predators GM David Poile listens to a questionWatson Suspension Presserpoile 091218
Predators GM David Poile listens to a questionWatson Suspension Presserpoile 091218 /

The Nashville Predators signified something major by trading away Viktor Arvidsson to the Los Angeles Kings for two draft picks. They are heading in the direction of a rebuild.  GM David Poile has been outspoken about making major changes to the team this offseason, and this move appears to be the first domino to fall.

But he also reminded us of something very critical and something that should relieve Predators fans.  He is not stubborn or overly loyal.

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If you are nervous about decisions Poile may make this offseason, you have every right to feel that way.

By signing depth in the 2020 offseason, it felt like Poile gave the old core too many chances. With how the team floundered out of the gate, such thinking was only magnified.

But by trading one of the more prominent members of the team, Poile showed that he is not willing to keep players on the roster if they are not getting the job done.  History shows that he does not keep any player if he thinks he can improve the team.

Several critical players in the Predators’ history have been fan and team favorites. Some of those players were Tomas Vokoun, Jason Arnott, Patric Hornqvist, and Shea Weber.

The trades of Arnott and Weber are especially telling because both served as Captains of the team and meant a lot to the organization. However, that did not stop Poile from getting rid of either.

Even the Hornqvist trade was initially shocking, as he has made a living off of being a disruptive force in front of the net and a heart and soul player for the Predators.  Vokoun was the longtime starting goaltender and the backbone of the team.  Guess what? They were both deemed replaceable by Poile.

We can also see this theme in his decisions in the 2017 expansion draft when he left James Neal unprotected.  Neal was one of the Predators’ better scorers in his three years on the team and was emerging as a fan-favorite among the Smashville faithful.  Yet again, Poile decided that he was declining and expendable, and honestly, he was correct.

In all of these moves, we could see Poile’s main priority; to make the team better, no matter who or what was involved.  Trading Arvidsson, a player who became one of the better forwards for the Predators and was loved by his fans and teammates alike, is yet another indication that Poile is not truly loyal to any one player.  And we could really see how some of the players felt after the trade.

But player sentiments can’t affect Poile’s decisions. It is a business, and every move made is for the betterment of the team.  Sometimes it is necessary to upgrade at a certain position or go in a different direction. Sacrifices must be made to fulfill those objectives.

I am not saying that Poile is anywhere near perfect. I am also not saying you should not have doubts about the remaining moves he makes this offseason. I am not even saying that I do not have my own doubts about what is to come.

However, I do know one thing. Poile does not want to keep anyone on the roster who is no longer good enough to meet expectations.

Related Story. Nashville Predators Make A Trade Splash, Deal Arvidsson To Kings. light