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Well somehow it seems fitting that a player named Jed Ortmeyer signed yesterday with the Nashville Predators (let the hayseed, hick and redneck jokes begin!). It's not like we weren't already the punching bag of the league but now we give them more fodder for jokes!
I understand that not all signings can be the Chris Drury's, Scott Gomez's and Paul Kariya's but deep down I was hoping for a bit more yesterday. That being said I think this is a great signing. What? Jed Ortmeyer is a great signing? Yes and let me tell you why.
Look at the great teams and one trait they all share is a strong group of role players. Guys who won't put up 30 goals but will help the team in other intangibles and chip in the ever so timely goal.
At first glance Jed (yes...ALL of Nashville is now on a first name basis with him) seems like a third or fourth line guy without much pizzazz but when I looked a little deeper at the numbers...I really like what I see.
He produced more points (9 in 41 games) last season than he has in his two previous NHL seasons (58 games and 6 points in 03-04 and 7 points in 78 games in 05-06).
He led the Rangers in blocked shots 05-06 and finished 7th in the league. Think Greg Zanon here...doesn't put up a ton of points but throws his body around for the sake of the team. You can't put a value on that! He is also not afraid to hit either, totaling 88 hits last year.
I also like the fact that he played four full years of college hockey for the University of Michigan. His teammates included NHL players Mike Comrie, Jeff Jillson, Andy Hilbert, Mike Cammalleri, Mike Komisarek, Jeff Tambellini...not bad company if you ask me. He was also the CCHA Tournament MVP his senior year in 02-03.
All in all I think Jed has allot of what Nashville fans get excited about...passion for the game. While no one will confuse Jed for Paul Kayria that’s okay because in his own way Jed will be just as valuable to this team...and at a fraction of the cost!
Come and listen to my story about a man named Jed...