Kukla's Korner Hockey
"It was a rough year all the way around, on the ice, off the ice, everything could go wrong went wrong. It was a disaster of a season by all accounts...."
-Cody Hodgson on his past season in Buffalo. More from Hodgson on his new team, the Nashville Predators by David Ammenheuser of the Tennessean.
from Adam Vingan of The Tennessean,
"We now have the depth that we need," Poile said.
Jackman's veteran presence, which cost $4 million over two years, will balance what many believe is the NHL's strongest defense, led by do-it-all tandem Shea Weber and Roman Josi. Behind them stands Pekka Rinne, who reestablished himself last season as one of the NHL's elite goaltenders.
Nashville's top-six forward group will be anchored by centers Ribeiro and Mike Fisher, "two 35-year-old centers that we've eventually got to replace, whether that's in two years (or) three years," according to Poile.
In the mean time, they should be joined by Filip Forsberg, James Neal, Colin Wilson and Craig Smith, all of whom scored at least 20 goals last season. The last two remain unsigned as restricted free agents, but the expectation is that both will return on longer-term contracts.
Coincidentally, the Predators offered Hodgson the same one-year, $1.05 million contract that they gave Ribeiro last July after the Coyotes bought out his contract. The hope is that it will have the same effect on Hodgson, a former 20-goal scorer who will likely start as Nashville's third-line center, as it did on Ribeiro.
Rookies Steve Moses, whose 36 goals set a single-season KHL record, and Kevin Fiala are also intriguing options for coach Peter Laviolette to consider.
added 12:07 PM:
added 9:30am, Press release is below...
I tweeted on this topic a few hours ago but felt it was necessary to include it in KK too...
from Adam Vingan of The Tennessean,
Details in the sexual assault civil lawsuit against Predators center Mike Ribeiro emerged Friday.
Documents filed Thursday in U.S. District Court and originally obtained by the On The Forecheck blogdescribe interactions between Ribeiro and his former nanny involving alleged unwanted advances that occurred in 2012.
Ribeiro signed a one-year, $1.05 million contract with Nashville last summer after having his four-year contract bought out by the Coyotes.
Ribeiro made Predators general manager David Poile aware of the allegations prior to being signed, according to agent Don Meehan. In the news release written by the Predators to announce the signing, Poile said that the team had "done our due diligence."
"Mike and (wife) Tamara Ribeiro deny these allegations and will confront their accuser in a court of law," Ribeiro's lawyer, Brian Lauten, said in a statement to The Tennessean on Friday. "In the meantime, heeding my advice, they will not be making any further comments. Mike is dedicated to being the best hockey player he can be and attempting to try this case outside the courtroom does a disservice to all parties."
NEW YORK (May 30, 2015) – The National Hockey League (NHL) and the Nashville Predators® today unveiled the official logo for the 2016 NHL® All-Star festivities, which will be held Saturday, January 30 and Sunday, January 31 at Bridgestone Arena in downtown Nashville. This marks the first time the Predators, the city of Nashville and Bridgestone Arena will host the League's mid-season showcase, which includes the NHL All-Star Skills Competition™ and the NHL® All-Star Game.
from Tom Cigarran, Chairman of the Nashville Predators,
Dear Nashville Predators Fans,
On behalf of the Nashville Predators ownership group, staff and players, thank you for your outstanding support throughout this season and for turning Bridgestone Arena into a sea of gold during our playoff series against Chicago. Losing in the playoffs is always painful, especially considering how hard our team worked and how close we came to advancing to the next round. We share your pain and we are still coming to grips with the fact that our season has ended.
There is no doubt that this season, both the regular season but especially the playoffs, was an important learning experience for our very young team. A team that, based on what transpired throughout the year, will continue to grow and develop and be a team that will compete for the Stanley Cup every year for years to come. Among the keys to playoff success, in addition to a strong team and playoff experience, are health and good fortune. Playing without Captain Shea Weber for four games and center Mike Fisher for three certainly increased the challenge but our young players stepped up admirably. Losing double and triple overtime games while outplaying Chicago, games where one bounce of the puck would have changed a loss into a win, tested this teams’ character. They responded by fighting back to win Game Five on home ice and push the Blackhawks to the very end of Game Six.
A re-tooling of our team began just two seasons ago. In that short time, we acquired Filip Forsberg, James Neal and Mike Ribeiro; we drafted Seth Jones and Kevin Fiala (among other young prospects) and we changed course with the addition of Peter Laviolette as our head coach this season. While we are disappointed to not be playing today, it is a measure of our progress that in two years we have gone from finishing the regular season in 27th place in the NHL in the 2012-13 season, to 19th in the 2013-14 season to 6th in the 2014-15 season. And Coach Laviolette has certainly transformed our team into a more aggressive, offensive and exciting club to watch.
from Adam Vingan of The Tennessean,
When the Predators acquired defenseman Cody Franson as part of a trade with the Maple Leafs on Feb. 15, it was viewed as the rich getting richer.
Franson was among the most coveted rental players available. His return to Nashville, which drafted him in 2005, strengthened what was already considered one of the best defenses in the NHL,
Yet Franson wasn't impactful in 28 regular-season and playoff games for Nashville, largely because he wasn't utilized nearly as much as he was in Toronto.
He averaged 21:23 per game for the Maple Leafs, which included 3:05 on the power play and 2:00 shorthanded. With the Predators, his ice time plunged to 15:25 per game, barely contributing to Nashville's special-teams units.
"It was definitely an adjustment," Franson said. "You go from playing over 20 minutes a night on any given night in a bunch of different situations, special teams and things like that, to more of a depth guy and trying to play more of a shutdown role and just not really allow much. I tried to adjust to it as best I could and contribute as much as I could."
from Rick Morrissey of the Chicago Sun-Times,
To be a goalie is to be the target for target practice, the easy excuse for every goal and the person most likely to be benched. Yet goalies eat their gruel and ask for more.
Saturday was another reminder of the job’s wild extremes and why, given a choice, an aspiring goalie might want to seek more stable employment, such as bomb defuser.
Scott Darling, the biggest sports story in Chicago a few days ago, was pulled after allowing three goals in the first period and likely won’t see the ice again during the playoffs. Corey Crawford, treated like a communicable disease around town last week, took Darling’s place to huge roars at the United Center and even louder ones when the Blackhawks came back to beat the Nashville Predators 4-3 and advance to the next round of the playoffs.
It would be a miracle if neither of these guys has major trust issues in life.
There would seem to be no turning back now for coach Joel Quenneville as it concerns his goalies. Crawford replaced Darling with 11 minutes, 16 seconds left in the first period, and it will be a shocker if we see Darling again in the playoffs. A coach can’t keep yo-yoing his goalies like this. Make a decision and stick with it.
In the end, when the horn went off, there seemed to be extra meaning in the hugs that teammates gave Crawford. First Duncan Keith, who scored the winning goal, then the rest of the Hawks, who know what Crawford has been through.
The Blakhawks have defeated the Nasville Predators 4-3 to win the series 4-2.
They will meet te winner of the Minnesota/St. Louis series.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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