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07-22-2013, 11:46 PM
Top 6 Spaling
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Originally Posted by SLake View Post
We lost Matt Halischuk, Brandon Yip, Chris Mueller, Daniel Bang (returning to Sweden), Sergei Kostitsyn, and I'll give you Martin Erat.

We gained Matt Cullen, Viktor Stalberg, Eric Nystrom, Matt Hendricks, and in return of course Filip Forsberg. We are also healthy again.

Cullen, Stalberg, and Forsberg will replace and IMO (as three vs. two should) surpass the production of Erat and Kostitsyn. As a result of health we will have Gaustad back to replace Mueller. That's a win. Nystrom and Hendricks bring more to the table than Halischuk and Yip, but obviously at a higher price. I'll call that a wash. The real win is Cullen pushing down Fisher and Legwand down a line to spots were they can be more effective and overall the additions giving a little more breathing room for Wilson, Hornqvist, and Bourque to return from their surgeries, and ease the expectations of Forsberg and Smith a tad. Taylor Beck is a total wildcard IMO. He looked very good when he was first called up and eventually got injured. If he can return and add another weapon, that's another upgrade over the roster from the start of last season...
I don't disagree that we're in better shape than last season, though no Erat all year will hurt. Our young players should progress some, so that will help. So yes, I do think we will improve slightly, but I think think we're a bottom 10 team. Who knows how the new division will effect things.

Injuries may be better this year, or they may not. As awful as the decimation of our forwards was, we were very lucky on the backend and in net. Injuries will happen for us and every other team, and just imagine what the team will look like if one Weber/Josi/Rinne goes down. Can you imagine a Hutton/Hellberg tandem? Obviously any team would be badly hurt by losing their starter, but my point is that injuries always can and will happen. The question is how you respond to them. We simply went into a nosedive. Ottawa lost Spezza all year, Karlsson all year, Michalek for most of the year, and Anderson for a little over half of the year, and STILL made the playoffs and won a first round serious.

I'm not going to assume we're better just because we're healthy, because that can always change.

#suckforsam. Let the young guys play and make their mistakes now. Give Jones big minutes, if that will help his progression. Play Wilson and Forsberg on the top line. Give Smith the minutes and line-mates it takes to return to form. I don't want us to intentionally lost games, by any means. Play hard. But put us in situations that improve our young players and our future, which is my mind, play Halischuk instead of Hendricks does. But again, many disagree, so I digress. I also think adding someone like Grabo will be better for us two years down the road than Hendricks+Nystrom. Just my opinion.

I hope this team proves me so wrong by returning to the old Predators hockey of playing hard every night and beating people by outworking them. Underdogs on paper, winners on the scoreboard. Last year, we weren't that, and I think Poile tried to go back to those roots this summer. Hopefully it worked and he didn't just overpay for two mediocre pieces.

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