This word surrounds the Nashville Predators and its' fans. This state has cost the team Paul Kariya and possibly other Free Agent's this NHL off season. This state surrounds the events in which the Predators ownership situation stands. You could also use this word to describe the upcoming season. It seems as though the entire NHL world and its' media has focused on the Predator misfortune, but instead of writing gloom and doom, I'd like to share some information that is certain in the Preds world.
1. All is not lost. Yes, the team will be without a few big names (Timonen, Hartnell, Vokoun, and Kariya) but this doesn't mean that the team won't compete. I can remember just this past season the Preds being described as one of the deepest teams in the league. Well, now we get to see some that depth. I fully expect Shea Weber to fill Timonen's shoes (albeit without the C), Alexander Radulov to replace Hartnell but with a bit more scoring, Chris Mason has already shown that he can play up to and beyond Vokoun, and I feel like J.P. Dumont will benefit from the added minutes with Paul Karyia's departure.
2. David Poile is still in control. Although he may not have the budget similar to previous seasons, I fully expect Mr. Poile to get the best out of what players and salary he has. The recent signings are an indication of such. When a new owner is finally announced, hopefully he will give Mr. Poile some play money.
3. With the signings of Jed Ortmeyer, Radek Bonk, and Greg de Vries we will have a new team look this upcoming season. Our first 2 lines will be the scoring lines, the 3rd line a defensive "shut-down" line, and the 4th line will still be expected to stir it up on the ice. I like these signings for the reason that defense wins championships (see the Anaheim Ducks for the prime example) and all 3 of these players help in that department.
So there are 3 very good reasons for Pred Nation not to panic. Don't forget folks, the franchise location is in our hands. Average 14,000 fans this season and the lease stays intact. I'll be at the rally on July 19th at The Sommet Center and expect all of Pred Nation to turn out as well! SEE YA' AT THE RALLY!