Nashville Predators v Phoenix Coyotes

Preds GM Poile on Suter meeting: “Very, very good”


Josh Cooper of The Tennessean reports Predators GM David Poile met with impending UFA defenseman Ryan Suter on Thursday at Suter’s house in Madison, WI.

“The meetings were very, very good,” Poile said. “They were very positive and very constructive.”

Poile also stated he and Suter’s agent, Neil Sheehy, would continue to talk on a regular basis leading up to the July 1 free agency deadline. Given how the NHL landscape has shifted recently, these talks are going to be of great importance as it seems things are transpiring for Suter to at least test the free-agent waters.

The Detroit Red Wings — rumored to be one of Suter’s main suitors — have both a No. 1 defenseman spot and $6.2 million available now that captain Nicklas Lidstrom has retired.

Yesterday, TSN’s Bob McKenzie noted that — based on the current CBA and Hockey Related Revenue — the upcoming salary cap would be $70.3 million, meaning a whole bunch of teams could have spending money to throw at Suter.

Of course, the CBA expires on Sept. 15 and nobody knows for certain where the cap will end up.

It should also be noted that Nashville is one of the teams with surplus cap space. The Preds could have as much as $38 million available, though they do have a number of key RFAs and UFAs in addition to Suter: Shea Weber, Sergei Kostitsyn, Alexander Radulov, Colin Wilson, Andrei Kostitsyn, Paul Gaustad, Jordin Tootoo, Hal Gill and Anders Lindback.

It looks like Havlat won’t make Panthers

Martin Havlat
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As PHT’s mentioned before, the Florida Panthers stand as a fascinating contrast between youth and experience.

Let’s not kid ourselves, though; fresh faces usually beat out gray beards, at least when it comes to teams that are still trying to build toward contender status.

While it’s by no means official, two Panthers beat writers – the Miami Herald’s George Richards and the Florida Sun-Sentinel’s Harvey Fialkov – report that the Panthers are likely to pass on Martin Havlat.

It wasn’t just about the likes of Jonathan Huberdeau and Nick Bjugstad leading the charge. Other young Panthers (maybe most notably Quinton Howden and Connor Brickley) made the team, thus making Havlat less necessary.

One would assume that it might be tough for the 34-year-old to find work, at least if he insists upon only an NHL deal.

Health issues continue to dog him, but he’s no longer one of those guys who tantalizes with talent when he is healthy enough to play.

Havlat also doesn’t really bring much to the table defensively. While other veterans can kill penalties and show a little more verstaility, Havlat’s greatest selling point is scoring.

Could this be it for a solid career that may nonetheless end with a “What if?” or two?

Silfverberg is set to practice again after Torres hit

Jakob Silfverberg
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Considering all of the controversy surrounding the 41-game suspension for Raffi Torres, some might have lost track of the guy who received that hit: Jakob Silfverberg.

The good news is that, at the moment, it seems like he’s OK.

The Anaheim Ducks announced that he skated on his own and will be involved in the team’s next practice:

That falls in line with some of the fall-out from the hit, as head coach Bruce Boudreau let out a relieved “thank goodness” at the young forward seemingly dodging a bullet.

Here’s video of the hit and the suspension decision:

Silfverberg, 24, enjoyed a nice breakout in 2014-15, especially during the playoffs.

Keep in mind that injuries can sometimes crop up later than expected, especially potential head injuries/concussions. Still, it seems like the initial reaction is that the damage was minimal.