Nashville Predators need a big free agent upgrade
I’ve been beating this drum for a few years now, and will continue to until Poile makes a bold addition to boost this offense. This team needs more wingers that can fuel the offensive rush, and not leave all of the scoring responsbilities on just a few players.
The Predators are in a position this offseason, even if they do pay Filip Forsberg handsomely, to make a key upgrade to their top-six. Preferably a winger who can be an instant fit
There are some worthy options in this year’s free agency market, but also not without a steep price. One interesting possibility that falls into this category is Ondrej Palat.
Palat has been a major factor into the Tampa Bay Lightning pushing for a three-peat in this postseason. In the 2nd-round sweep of the Florida Panthers, he tallied points in three of the four games and a goal in Game 4.
With this said, the Predators will likely have to pay upwards of $6M per year for the top line scorer. Palat has more than earned himself a nice pay raise after what he’s accomplsihed in his ten years with Tampa that has resulted in 423 points.
Palat is someone to think about if Poile decides to get aggressive, and especially if they lose Forsberg they’ll have more money to spend and a big hole to fill.
Even if Forsberg stays, the projected cap space for the Predators leaves room to make another major addition in free agency. A second line of Palat, Johansen, and Tomasino sparks my interest.
Another possible unrestricted free agent that’s gotten some buzz is Max Domi. He’d be an instant offensie upgrade to the top six of the roster as well, but also not without a steep price.
Domi also has had his moments of not producing, so you have to keep that in mind with the risk involved.
You could most likely get Domi for a cheaper price than Palat, but still be an upgrade. Domi is also a former 70-plus point scorer in 2018-19, and other times has crossed the 50-point mark and 40-point marks.
Other options out there that could address wing or center are Reilly Smith, Phil Kessell, Andrew Copp, and a handful of others. Some more unrealistic than others. Either way, Poile needs to be aggressive at this position of need in free agency.