A Simple Message From Barry Trotz to Nashville Predators: Work Hard, Get Paid

Barry Trotz has proven this formula already a few times this year for the Predators of "hard work gets you paid".

A few of Trotz's favorites, Michael McCarron and Tom Wilson Nashville Predators v Washington Capitals
A few of Trotz's favorites, Michael McCarron and Tom Wilson Nashville Predators v Washington Capitals / Scott Taetsch/GettyImages

Nashville Predators General Manager Barry Trotz was a no-nonsense kind of coach. It is very easy to get him on your side as a player. Work hard, give your all, and he'll give you minutes. Now as the leader of a front office, you work hard, give your all, and he'll give you money.

Sometimes you don't wait to sign your players to extensions and you make your move sooner rather than later. Trotz has already done that twice this season with deals extending Cole Smith and Michael McCarron.

These aren't big money deals, but are clear rewards for players who have set career highs (Smith already has, and McCarron needs two points and I'm knocking wood just in case) and have done all of the little things.

What to Make of Trotz's Leadership Style in the Front Office

Jesse Kiiskinen, Barry Trotz
2023 Upper Deck NHL Draft - Rounds 2-7 / Jeff Vinnick/GettyImages

A move in the other direction that also helps prove this is Philip Tomasino. There are ways to manage a former 1st round pick, and sending them to the minors despite having 20 points in 41 games isn't your typical solution. He's in a contract year and Head Coach Andrew Brunette has specifically talked about "trust" and "The little things that plague him a little bit, the structures and details of our system, are glaring at times". Trotz sending him to Milwaukee is a clear message.

This is clearly different from sending down a player like Juuso Parssinen, a 7th round pick who exceeded expectations last season and has struggled this year. He's having some struggles but in the end, if he doesn't work out, or ends up an AHL player it isn't as big of a deal. In the AHL he gets more ice time and gets a chance to build his confidence back up. Tomasino has specific reasons he's in the AHL and has faced much harsher criticism.

Trotz loves guys who work hard. Nashville Predators fans have seen that time and time again through his tenure as coach and in his various trips around the league.


For instance, let's remember his New York Islander teams from 2018-2022. During that time his 4th line of Matt Martin, Cal Clutterbuck, and Casey Cizikas played more than any other 4th line in the league. Martin, Clutterbuck, and Cizikas all signed new deals with the team during his tenure, likely thanks to how he deployed them as a coach.

With the Washington Capitals, Trotz took a highly skilled offensive team and helped them find some defensive respectability, which led to four-straight 100+ point seasons, and a Stanley Cup win. In his final season obviously, they still have their top-end talent, but the roster that the Capitals put on the ice was far more balanced than in previous seasons.

Trotz's Islanders teams were very similar. Nobody scored more than 62 points in a season, and Trotz and Lou Lamoriello iced a balanced roster filled with defensively responsible two-way players. It is clearly something that Trotz is attempting to replicate here in Nashville.

As we continue to get used to Trotz as a general manager, we can see he's continuing a familiar pattern when it comes to how his players are managed.

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