Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Predators Release Opening Day Roster, Officially Sign Francis Bouillon

In two releases back to back, the Nashville Predators officially released their opening day roster as well as announcing that Francis Bouillon had officially been signed to a one year deal.

Cal O'Reilly officially pased through waivers and was assigned to Milwaukee as was Cody Franson. Joel Ward and Colin Wilson, both suffering from groin injuries, will start the year on Injured Reserve.

From the Predators Press Release...

-Two assignments, two injury designations put roster at 21 players-

Nashville, Tenn. (September 30, 2009) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today several transactions to set the club’s roster for Game One of the 2009-10 season, which comes Saturday, Oct. 3 at Dallas (7 p.m., FOX Sports Tennessee (HD) and 104.5 The Zone). Forward Cal O’Reilly and defenseman Cody Franson were assigned to the Milwaukee Admirals (AHL), while forwards Joel Ward and Colin Wilson were placed on injured reserve.

The four moves puts Nashville’s active roster at 21 players entering the regular season – 13 forwards, six defensemen and two goaltenders.

Players by position currently on the active roster are as follows:

FORWARDS (13): Jason Arnott, Wade Belak, J.P. Dumont, Martin Erat, Marcel Goc, Ben Guite, Patric Hornqvist, Ryan Jones, David Legwand, Mike Santorelli, Jerred Smithson, Steve Sullivan, Jordin Tootoo.

DEFENSEMEN (6): Francis Bouillon, Dan Hamhuis, Kevin Klein, Teemu Laakso, Ryan Suter, Shea Weber.

GOALTENDER (2): Dan Ellis, Pekka Rinne.

Coming off a winning preseason campaign, the Predators kick off the home portion of the 2009-10 campaign on Oct. 8 when they host the Colorado Avalanche at 7 p.m. at the Sommet Center. Tickets to this game, and all other regular season contests are now on sale and can be purchased by logging onto Tickets are also available by calling (615) 770-PUCK and at all Ticketmaster locations.

In a separate release from the Predators the official Signing of Bouillon was reported. Here is the release...


Nashville, Tenn. (September 30, 2009) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has signed defenseman Francis Bouillon (FRAN-sihs BOO-liawn) to a one-year, $750,000 contract. Bouillon attended Predators Training Camp on a Professional Tryout Agreement, scoring a goal in one preseason game.

Bouillon, 33 (10/17/75), posted a career-high five goals, nine points and 53 penalty minutes in 54 games with Montreal in 2008-09. The 5-8, 196-pound blueliner has played 485 NHL games since 1999-2000, amassing 102 points (21g-81a) and 371 penalty minutes. Bouillon’s only NHL experience outside of a Canadiens sweater came in 2002-03, when he dressed for four games with the Predators. He was claimed on waivers by Nashville, from Montreal, on Oct. 2, 2002, then reclaimed by the Habs on Oct. 25, 2002.

A native of New York, N.Y., Bouillon is also a veteran of 25 NHL Playoff contests, and has seen action in four of the last five postseasons.

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

Hump Day Highlights

Today we will start out with a bit of shameless self promotion. A couple of weeks ago I got a rather innocent looking email from Jeff Klein who is one of the writers for the New York Times Hockey Blog, Slap Shot. It was an invitation to become the Predators contributor to Slap Shot's Hockey Night in Blogdom project. Of course we said that we would love to.

The project has a blogger from each of the NHL's thirty teams that will answer questions and check in at different points during the season. The first posts went up on Tuesday in the form of a series of questions and all thirty folks responded. Here is the Western Conference post and also the one from the East.

There are a bunch of great writers represented here, several of which I have gotten to know over Twitter. As a part of our Aggregator side venture, I put together the Slap Shot Hockey Night in Blogdom Aggregator so that all thirty sites could be seen at once.

There are a wide variety of sites, a few from SB Nation, a couple from Kukla's, and a bunch of purely independent sites like ours. Go to the Aggregator link and check them out.

It looks like it will be a fun project to be involved with and hopefully will be an avenue to "spread the gospel of Predator hockey to the four corners of the hockey world," which is one of the primary goals of POTG.

Our poll on the Preds Goal Song continues with Tim McGraw in a commanding lead. Our friend @jodystapley had an interesting idea - "I say switch it up..."skills to pay the bills" for @sully26 , "scarface" for #19, "slim shady" for #25, hotstepper for #10 I'm da sh-t for #22, Weapons of Mass Destruction for #71, Regulate for #3, Get up for #11, Cobrastyle for #28 Damn if Feels Good to be a Gangster for #6, American boy for #20, Problem Child for #2 Supermassive Black Hole for @dellis39 ;) get my point ;)". @predsgirl chips in with "The wall for @dellis39." Look to the right column to cast a vote if you haven't already.

In Pred Nation...

John Glennon brings some clarity to the confusion on Tuesday about Cal O'Reilly being placed on waivers. Other teams have until 11 a.m. today to claim him off the waiver wire. Here is our story with the official release from the Predators from yesterday.

Admiral's Short Shifts tries to make sense of the waiver rules in discussing the Cal O'Reilly situation.

Jim Diamond gives accolades to three Predator college prospects who have been mentioned in preseason college honors.

Forchecker gives his Western Conference picks. Could the East be far behind?

AJ at Pull My Fang Finger has his take on the Gretzky situation. As usual, it is a great read.

Colin Wilson, at 19, is the only Predator player listed in the Top 50 Prospects at Hockey's Future. Here's the links to 1-10, 11-25, and 26-50.

HockeyBuzz Radio returns tonight with a season preview with new co-host Pete Weber. Guests will be Peter McNab and Bill Clement. Paul McCann also has his Predator preview today at Hockey Buzz.

As part of the new Smashville campaign that we discussed yesterday, the Preds have also put out some cool wallpaper for your computer based on this year's theme.

Around the NHL... is running a contest where you can win a trip for two to any NHL game (excluding the Winter Classic). You must be on Twitter and following @NHL to play. Follow the link for details.

In a major pre-season fail, the Chicago Blackhawks lost to the Zurich Lions 2-1 giving the Swiss team the Victoria Cup Championship.

After his appearance on Monday's POTG Radio, Ryan at the RedLightDistrict has finalized his Division by Division, team by team picks.

A source in Sweden has now confirmed what Michelle Kenneth has been saying all Summer, that Mats Sundin is retiring. Michelle has pointed out that Mats has a poker contract that would have prevented him from playing this season.

The Forechecker reported that Behind the Net has now moved to SB Nation. The best analyst in hockey stats has now joined one of the best sports sites out there.

Congrats to Twitter friend Larry Halliday who has moved to HockeyBuzz as the Coyote correspondent. Larry goes by the Twitter moniker @HKYFN and has been one of the better trial tweeters over the Summer in Phoenix.

From @TSNBobMcKenzie: "Free agent Maxim Afinogenov has earned a spot on the Atlanta Thrashers, who are in the process of getting a contract done."

Frozen Notes points us to a few pictures on the Blues site from Sweden. David is also a fellow contributor to the NYT Hockey Night in Blogdom.

From @walsha: "DirecTV now says that it may carry Versus w/out new agreement in place. I hear DirecTV has incurred wrath of hockey fans and losing subs. DirecTV won't say how many subs have cancelled service, word is they are bleeding and desperate to get Versus back by start of NHL season."

The Program's Chris Wassel bashes ESPN for some really bizarre picks in their initial power rankings.

As we discussed on our podcast on Monday, Cody Hodgson is being returned to Juniors.

Our friends Chris and Adrian have a new video at the Hockey Zen where they interview Dan Wildfong, the head coach of the 2009 CHL Champions, Texas Brahmas. This is the first time that they have Skyped a guest onto their monitor for a visit. Interesting technology for the guys.

More Later...


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Predators Reduce Roster to 25

John Glennon is reporting at Inside Predators that the Predators have made several roster moves to get to the opening day maximum of 23.

The biggest surprise cut of the bunch is Alexander Sulzer who signed a one-way NHL contract last season before being injured in his second game. While not playing "separating himself" in the preseason, it was the general opinion that he would be the sixth D-man on the team.

Others reassigned to Milwaukee included Peter Olvecky, Nolan Yonkman, Triston Grant, and Cal O’Reilly. O'Reilly will have until 11 a.m. Wednesday to clear waivers before reporting to the Pred's AHL affiliate.

Joel Ward will open the season on Injured Reserve for his groin injury and Colin Wilson will remain in Nashville to rehabilitate is groin also but will not count against the Pred's roster.

Surprisingly, Teemu Laakso and Cody Franson remain in camp as the sixth and seventh defenseman.

Here's a look at the players who remain in Nashville.

19 Jason Arnott
9 Marcel Goc
24 Ben Guite
11 David Legwand
16 Cal O'Reilly
53 Mike Santorelli
25 Jerred Smithson
33 Colin Wilson (non-roster)

28 Ryan Jones
26 Steve Sullivan

3 Wade Belak
71 J.P. Dumont
10 Martin Erat
27 Patric Hornqvist
22 Jordin Tootoo
29 Joel Ward (injured reserve)

32 Cody Franson
2 Dan Hamhuis
8 Kevin Klein
4 Teemu Laakso
20 Ryan Suter
6 Shea Weber
Francis Bouillon

39 Dan Ellis
35 Pekka Rinne

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

Addendum: The official Predators release follows. O'Reilly's status is not clear and was reported by John Glennon to be awaiting clearing waivers until 11 a.m. on Wednesday.

From the Predators...

-Roster now at 25-

Nashville, Tenn. (September 29, 2009) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has reduced the club’s roster to 25 players, assigning forwards Triston Grant and Peter Olvecky and defensemen Alexander Sulzer and Nolan Yonkman to the Milwaukee Admirals (AHL).

Nashville’s roster now consists of 16 forwards, seven defensemen and two goaltenders. Teams must be at or below the 23-man active roster limit by Oct. 1 at 2 p.m. CT. The Predators open the 2009-10 regular season two days later on Thursday, Oct. 3 at Dallas (7 p.m., FOX Sports Tennessee (HD) and 104.5 The Zone).

Players by position currently on the roster are as follows:

FORWARDS (16): Jason Arnott, Wade Belak, J.P. Dumont, Martin Erat, Marcel Goc, Ben Guite, Patric Hornqvist, Ryan Jones, David Legwand, Cal O'Reilly, Mike Santorelli, Jerred Smithson, Steve Sullivan, Jordin Tootoo, Joel Ward, Colin Wilson.

DEFENSEMEN (7): Francis Bouillon*, Cody Franson, Dan Hamhuis, Kevin Klein, Teemu Laakso, Ryan Suter, Shea Weber.

GOALTENDER (2): Dan Ellis, Pekka Rinne.

* - Denotes in camp on a Professional Tryout Agreement (PTO)

Coming off a winning preseason campaign, the Predators kick off the home portion of the 2009-10 campaign on Oct. 8 when they host the Colorado Avalanche at 7 p.m. at the Sommet Center. Tickets to this game, and all other regular season contests are now on sale and can be purchased by logging onto Tickets are also available by calling (615) 770-PUCK and at all Ticketmaster locations.

Welcome to the New Smashville

The Nashville Predators introduced their new marketing campaign with a different twist on Smashville. The focus will be on the "It" in "It Stays With You."

This release further explains the "Cloverfield-like" video that came out a couple of weeks ago. Watch the video again after reading the release.

Look for more on a social media site near you.


Here's the Predators Press Release in its entirety...

Preds Capture Spirit of Smashville

2009-10 Campaign to Highlight Excitement and Energy of Predators Hockey

Nashville, Tenn. (September 29, 2009) – Right in the heart of downtown Nashville is a place as friendly as it is ferocious. It is a place so full of raw energy and gut-wrenching excitement that the unexpected is a nightly occurrence. It is the place that the Nashville Predators proudly call home. Welcome to Smashville.

But Smashville is more than just a place, it is a spirit that no other National Hockey League team can ever own or understand. It starts with the all-in attitude, energy and intensity the Nashville Predators bring to every game and it is brought to life by the passion of the fans. Simply put, Smashville is the raw ingredient of the ‘IT’ in ‘IT STAYS WITH YOU.’

“Smashville is the place to be,” Predators President of Business Operations Ed Lang said. “The Smashville spirit is what fuels our pursuit of the Stanley Cup year after year. It is what compels us to put on the best game for our fans. From high-speed playmaking to an exhilarating come-from-behind win, anything can happen in Smashville.”

Revived in partnership with marketing firm GS&F, the concept of Smashville will officially launch the week of September 28 with a viral-video movement via Social Media sites Twitter and Facebook as well as the Predators official Web site The campaign will soon be incorporated on billboards and special outlets around Nashville, in new television and radio commercials and across the Internet and will be showcased throughout the Sommet Center during games. Commercials filmed during two recent Predators preseason games will highlight the fans as an integral part of Smashville.

Coming off of a winning pre-season record, the Predators open their regular season in Dallas on Saturday, Oct. 3 with the home opener in Smashville coming the following Thursday, Oct. 8 vs. the Colorado Avalanche. Tickets to the home opener are on sale now as are season ticket packages and individual game tickets for the 2009-10 season.

For information and prices on 2009-10 Nashville Predators individual game sales, season-ticket packages and partial plans in Smashville, visit or contact a ticket representative at (615) 770-PUCK (7825).

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

Tuesday Update and POTG Podccast

We would like to thank Ryan from the RedLightDistrict for joining us for our Nashville Predator and Western Conference preview edition of POTG Radio last night. We gave a good shot at covering the Preds as well as each team individually.

It has been a few weeks since we tackled the Eastern Conference but now out trip through all 30 teams is complete.

Ryan has published one of the best preseason preview magazines that I have seen. He will be happy to send a copy to you in PDF form if you email the request to

I realized after we were done that we forgot to give away two tickets to the Preds-San Jose game in November during the show. Maybe we will run a blog contest instead. Any suggestions on how to conduct a ticket contest?

The Predators are now down to 28 players in camp and now have less than two days to get to 23 or fewer players. The only official announcement on Monday was Nick Spaling being sent to Milwaukee. Admiral's Short Shifts confirmed that Nolan Yonkman was also being passed through waivers with the intent of going to Milwaukee.

After yesterday's day off, the Predators return to the ice this morning at 10 a.m. at Centennial for practice. Once the health of injured players is evaluated, more cuts could come today.

There was a lot of Twittering about the Pred's new commercial on Monday. The consensus was that it wasn't enough hockey for the true fan. That's not the point of this one. The campaign appears to be driven to the casual fan or someone who has never to a game who is looking for a night out on Lower Broad. Hopefully, many of these types of folks will find 501 Broad this season. One game is all it takes for folks to get hooked. The hockey purists need to cut a little slack on the ad as it may be the means to an end.

In Pred Nation...

John Glennon looks at what the Pred's opening night roster will look like. I agree with his assessment. The two games over the weekend did little to alter my roster shakedown thoughts from last Saturday. John also has a post on Jordin Tootoo needing to expand his arsenal.

Mark of the View From 111 has his preseason thoughts at Hockey Independent. That was complicated to get out.

AJ continues onward with great stuff at Pull My Fang Finger. If you haven't added him to your reading list, you need to do so.

Section 303 asked if we should consider Peter Forsberg again? Later in the day a rumor of a stress fracture in his foot was making the rumor circuit. Imagine that!

Justin Goldman at Dobber Hockey has a look at a few tenders, including Dan Ellis, that played well in the pre-season. He also has a link to an earlier story at the Goalie Guild where he projects Ellis as having a rebound season.

Melt Your Face Off has a great Preds Preview, Chris Hansen style. They even give a link to POTG, Forechecker and Section 303.

Jim Diamond takes a look at the just released College Rankings and a few Preds prospects that are playing for the nationally ranked college teams this year.

Big Kev has a new look to his blog and hits on a couple of points this morning.

Around the NHL...

The NHL is now asking DirectTV subscribers to complain to DirectTV about dropping Versus. This seems a little late to start pushing at the last minute. Why didn't somebody think of this in August?

Very little news from yesterday's NHLPA player's conference call. This morning TSN's @DarrenDreger Tweets "NHLPA conference call lasted 2.5 hours last night. nothing contentious. the next one, on the 4th will deal with Kelly's contract. ".

Kevin Allan and the rest of the USA Today staff have their Award and Division predictions this morning. John Glennon is included and says that the Coyotes will end up in Hamilton.

Our friend Michelle Kenneth rounds up what's happening in the Devil's world at her blog and has another post at Inside Hockey.

It's Tuesday and Psycho Lady Hockey is back with another top ten. Classic as always.

From @NHL: " this week will stream Victoria Cup and other exhibition games from Europe for free."

A short retirement for Bret Hedican as he Tweets @hedicanbret: "Was hired by Comcast Sportsnet to do the Sharks Pre/Post game! Thought I could get out of the game for a while, guess I was wrong! Shd bfun!" Further he said, "A close friend commented on my "face for Radio" after 17 years in the show! Sorry Shark fans, better get use to by crooked nose and scars!"

Kevin Weekes was on XM 204 HTM yesterday. Here's a replay. This morning, the HTM crew predicts the NHL Awards for this year.

From the @NHL: "BREAKING NEWS: #NYR players will read the Top 10 on Wednesday's edition of The Late Show with David Letterman."

I listened to our friend Travis Hair from Five for Howling on a podcast that I'd never listened to before and really enjoyed it. Check out HockeeNight Puckcast on TalkShoe.

So how does an NHL team lose to a European team? Ask the Florida Panthers who lost to Tappara in Finland. The Blackhawks fared better beating HC Davos 9-2.

Finally, from Fast Company comes extensive research about Twitter Re-Tweets. This would be interesting to anyone who Tweets regularly.

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

Monday, September 28, 2009

Nick Spaling Sent to Milwaukee

From the Nashville Predators...

-Roster now at 29-

Nashville, Tenn. (September 28, 2009) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has reassigned forward Nick Spaling to the Milwaukee Admirals (AHL), putting the club’s roster at 29 players.

Nashville’s roster now consists of 18 forwards, nine defensemen and two goaltenders. Teams must be at or below the 23-man active roster limit by Oct. 1 at 2 p.m. CT. The Predators open the 2009-10 regular season two days later on Thursday, Oct. 3 at Dallas (7 p.m., FOX Sports Tennessee (HD) and 104.5 The Zone).

The Predators kick off the home portion of the 2009-10 campaign on Oct. 8 when they host the Colorado Avalanche at 7 p.m. at the Sommet Center. Tickets to this game, and all other regular season contests are now on sale and can be purchased by logging onto Tickets are also available by calling (615) 770-PUCK and at all Ticketmaster locations.

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnThe Glass

Weekend Round Up and POTG Radio Tonight

Happy 15th Birthday to my son and POTG partner Jackson (@jacksonoakes). I love you and I am very proud of you.

Tonight on POTG Radio we will have Ryan from the RedLightDistrict join us for our Western Conference and Predator Preview Edition. It has been a few weeks since we tackled the Eastern Conference but now we will take on the teams that we are more familiar with. We will also take a look at what the Preds will look like when they take the Ice on Saturday night at Dallas.

Ryan has published one of the best preseason preview magazines that I have seen. He will be happy to send a copy to you in PDF form if you email the request to RLDHockey

Listen to PredsOnTheGlass on internet talk radio

The controversy was over before it got going good on the Predators goal song. We have been told that Tim McGraw will return but is it time for a change? The poll is in the right hand column . If you want to hear both songs go here.

In Preds Nation...

Recaps from Saturday night's and Sunday afternoon's games are in abundance by the whole stable of Predators bloggers and writers. The latest updates by all can be found at our sister site, The Predators Aggregator.

Sully Tweets about a boys night out on Sunday Night, @Sully26: "Out with the boys tonight. Little team bonding before season starts" It was probably one last get together for some as cuts for up to seven or eight guys could come as early as this morning.

The Preds rolled out a new commercial last night and Smashville posted a copy at Youtube and OnTheForecheck. Here's a first look.

POTG on the 303:30... Jeremy and Codey at Section 303 hosted a Predator Blogger Roundtable on Saturday and we were able to participate along with Dirk Hoag, the Forechecker, Rachel Raines from What The Puck and Hockey Buzz's Brandon Felder. So much was covered that there may be more to come in the future.

Something else that we don't want to get lost in the weekend posts was an interview with Pekka Rinne that our friend Neil Bristow conducted and shared with us on Saturday. If you missed it, you should check it out here.

Jim Diamond has a look at Predator prospects results with their Junior team. We saw most of these guys in camp over the last couple of weeks.

From last week on TSN's Off the Record here is a segment with Jordin Tootoo. Thanks to Neil Bristow who gave us the heads up that Toots had been on.

For a full weekend roundup of the Admirals including summaries of both their games and pictures of Chet Pickard and Jeremy Smith's new goalie mask paint jobs check out Admirals Short Shifts.

A reader, Amber, gave us a tip to this rather convoluted argument from a Boston University student newspaper that is basically not happy that Colin Wilson went to Nashville instead of the Bruins or the Habs.

Around the NHL...

Our guest tonight, Ryan at the RLD takes a look at where all 30 team's rosters stood on Sunday. Ryan seemed a little rough on Patric Hornqvist.

Today is the first day for a return to a full schedule at XM204 Home Ice. Hockey This Morning will have a new lineup with Mike Ross, Shawn Laveigne and Peter Berce. Here is the last show on Friday that I've listened to a couple of times. It is a great recap of the first four years of the show with Scott Laughlin.

Also back today will be NHL Live with a rotating lineup of hosts. Rob Simpson and E. J. Hradek will get the ball rolling at 11:00 central today. The NHL Network will also return to nightly programing this week too.

Psycho Puck Lady has a double dose of news on her site. First she has a story on some Wikipedia shenanigans and then tells us that she has joined up with Illegal Curve as the only female columnist. Here is her first "Battle of the Sexes" column. Katrina has had a big week and it started out with her visit last Monday to POTG Radio. Congrats to Katrina for moving on to bigger and better and a much wider readership.

Puck Daddy caught up with Gary Bettman in DC and has a summary of his stand on multiple issues as we heard into another season.

From over the weekend, Newsday has a story on the Lighthouse Project that is a good informative read.

The Dallas Daily News already has a preview of the Stars season opener versus the Preds on Saturday.

The Puck Stops Here has a Central Division Preview at Kukla's and is kinder to the Preds than most pundits have been. The Hockey Writers weren't as kind in their Central Preview.

Matt at View from My Seats has a rhyme about the offseason. Very creative stuff!

NHL Digest has a story about Mark Messier's views on fighting, while Puck Daddy sees more instigator penalties in the future.

More tradition up in the air... If the goal song change wasn't enough for one weekend, the National Park Service is considering banning mule rides at the Grand Canyon. The mules have a long history in the canyon but now the NPS thinks that they are destroying the environment.

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Predators Finish Pre-Season with Road Win

The Nashville Predators finished their pre-season schedule with a 4-2 road win at Columbus. The Preds played with a makeshift line up that gave many of the younger and borderline players one last chance to impress the coaching staff.

Ryan Jones scored two goals in only 9:29 minutes of action. Other Pred goals were scored by Patric Hornqvist (five shots) and newcomer, Francis Bouillon. Assists were added by six different Predators.

The Preds were out-shot in every period with an 11-2 edge to Columbus in the first period. Columbus fielded a team that was fairly close to what they may send out on opening night.

Dan Ellis stopped 36 of 38 Columbus shots to give Coach Barry Trotz something to think about when choosing a starter for the season opener. Pekka Rinne was fairly well snake-bit in his final tune-up last night with several odd goals being scored in that contest.

Special teams were improved in today's outing. The Predators were 2 for 4 on the power play while stopping 5 of 6 Columbus man advantage opportunities.

Face offs have been a strong point for the Preds over the years but have been inconsistent in the pre-season and were only successful at a 45% clip today. Ben Guite was a standout going 12-5.

The Predators returned to Nashville after the game where Barry Trotz and his staff will meet to make final decisions on who will travel with the team to Dallas on Saturday for opening night.

Tough decisions will have to be made as few players have clearly "separated themselves" as Barry Trotz likes to say. The situation is further complicated by groin injuries and other minor ailments to several regular players.

The next few days will be interesting to see who stays and who goes back to Milwaukee. David Poile will continue to work the phones to see who else may be available at the right price from outside the organization.

I'm sure that Trotz and Poile would like to have had a clearer idea of who gets the last couple of slots but as Trotz said last night, "It is what is is."

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

I Like It, I love It, Do You Want More Of It?

During Saturday Night's game, at 14:19 in the first period, J. P. Dumont took a feed from Patric Hornqvist and shoved it past Carolina goalie Michael Leighton. The horn sounded, lights flashed and the goal song ensued.

What was different was that for the first time in years it was not the Predator's version of Tim McGraw's "I like It, I Love It."

The crowd was taken aback as Penny Wise's "Bro Hymn" roared throughout the Sommet Center before segueing into Gary Glitter's "Rock and Roll, Part 2."

The @predfans Twitter group went crazy. Everyone had an opinion, most very strong. Some thought that a tradition had been broken, while others rejoiced that Nashville might shed it's "hill-billish" image as Chris Chelios described it in the past.

Word from @NHLPredsInsider to @codeyh at Section 303 is that it was a one time thing and that McGraw will return. Now that the idea has arisen, let's take a poll to see what you want.

Here is your chance to vote your opinion. On the right of this page you can choose from Penny Wise, Tim McGraw or Other for the Pred's goal song. If you have a suggestion for other, feel free to comment below. Also if you feel strongly for either McGraw or the Bro Hymn, jump into the discussion too.

We will run it for a week and pass results and comments on to the Predator's game operations staff. Let the Pred fans speak out or forever hold your peace.

Thanks for voting and your comments. Here are the two songs for comparison. For reference sake, the first video is the Anaheim version of the Penny Wise Goal Song and the second is actual arena sounds from a Pred fan.

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnThe Glass

Preds Lose to Canes on an Off Night

Pekka Rinne, J. P. Dumont and Patric Hornqvist Post Game Comments

Barry Trotz Post Game Comments

On Saturday night at the Sommet Center, the Nashville Predators experienced a game where the pucks weren't bouncing their way as they lost to the Carolina Hurricanes by a 5-2 score in preseason action.

The game was full of odd goals that clearly were not going the Predators way. Carolina scored early at 1:13 when Jussi Jokinen put the puck in the net as the Predator were wearing down on the games opening shift as they had not gotten a change and things were clearly out of kilter.

The Preds played better for a while and tied the game at 14:19 when Patric Hornqvist fed the puck in front of the Carolina net to J. P. Dumont who stuffed the puck past Michael Leighton.

As the period ended Ray Whitney tipped a shot by Joe Corvo that left Pekka Rinne helpless to stop making it 2-1 Carolina. Coach Barry Trotz described it as being "like a rubber ball out there bouncing around."

Things did not get any better for the Preds in the second period. On the Carolina power play Eric Staal fired a puck from the blue line that went high, hit the glass, and rebounded back into the net as a surprised Pekka Rinne couldn't handle the odd bounce off of his shoulder and glove.

Later in the second period, Patric Hornqvist brought the game within a goal on a play where he stuffed the puck from the side and forced it behind Leighton for a goal.

The game remained close until the Preds had a complete come-apart in the waning seconds. After the Preds had killed off a Carolina power play there was more confusion around the net when Marty Erat bumped Pekka Rinne allowing Scott Walker to put the puck on net to make it 4-2 with 35 seconds remaining.

The final nail in the coffin was Dan Hamhuis mishandling the puck and knocking it into the empty Preds net while attempting to stop a Tim Conboy breakaway. This capped a poor performance by Hamhuis and Kline as the second defensive pairing that led Barry Trotz to comment after the game that "they weren't very good."

Coach Barry Trotz was clearly frustrated as he had envisioned this game as one where he could put his lines together and develop some chemistry prior to Next Saturday's season opener at Dallas against the Stars.

Nagging injuries to Steve Sullivan, Joel Ward, Wade Belak and others put a crimp in Trotz's plans as he said, "You are going to have injuries during the year that you can't control and we are having some right now."

Patric Hornqvist took Sullivan's spot on the Pred's top line and responded with a goal and an assist. Trotz explained how me made the choice, "You talk about at training camp doing the things to earn a spot and to get into the mix and he goes to hard areas, plays hard and does a lot of those things and he's been productive doing that."

Trotz further stated, "Arnie J.P. and Hornqvist were my best line by a long shot."

Trotz called out the second line saying, "I didn't think the Legwand line was very good tonight, at all. It wasn't mis-reads, it was mis-trys, they just weren't very sharp tonight. It's one of those starange games that you chalk up to being preseason and not everybody having their A-game which was the difference."

When asked about players that may have made strides toward the roster Trotz mentioned Patric Hornqvist, He went further, "As far as the young guys on the fence, there was no one that is really separating themselves from each other, they are all sort of in a pack. I thought Triston Grant was really good and I don't see anyone else that was outstanding other than Hornqvist." Trotz later added that Mike Santorelli did have a good game.

In summary, Trotz said, "the games where we have been good, the best players were the best players and not all of our best players were the best players tonight. You win or lose and that is a big responsibility that they carry every night. They have to be better."

Looking forward to Sunday's game at Columbus, Trotz indicated that the healthy forwards that didn't play on Saturday will play on Sunday. "We've got a lot of players that are sort of nicked up and we are reevaluating. We really don't have any spare bodies up front."

Known scratches for Sunday include Steve Sullivan, Joel Ward, and Wade Belak. Newcomer, Francis Bouillon is scheduled to make his debut.

So what is Barry Trotz looking for on Sunday, "I want to finish strong. This will be the last chance for some of the guys, for lack of a better tern, to make the team. There are some guys not playing as well as they should and that may force them down to Milwaukee."

The Predators travel to Columbus for a 4 p.m. Central game with the Blue Jackets. That will conclude the pre-season schedule for the Predators. The roster for the season opener will be finalized soon after the game is reviewed and evaluated.

New Goal Song... Creating the most discussion at the Sommet on Saturday was a substitute goal song. Tim McGraw's "I Like It, I Love It" was replaced by Pennywise's "Bro Hymn" which has become a staple goal song at several NHL arenas. We have no idea if this is a permanent change or merely a pre-season experiment.

POTG on the 303:30... Jeremy and Codey at Section 303 hosted a Predator Blogger Roundtable on Saturday and we were able to participate along with Dirk Hoag, the Forechecker, Rachel Raines from What The Puck and Hockey Buzz's Brandon Felder. So much was covered that there may be more to come in the future. To find out which Pred's player inadvertantly got the nickname "sprinkles", you will have to coax one of the participants into telling the story becasue it is currenly laying on the cutting room floor.

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Neil Bristow Interviews Pekka Rinne

Our friend Neil Bristow, from Edmonton, recently completed an extensive interview with Predators goaltender, Pekka Rinne. We thank Neil for giving us permission to publish the interview in it's entirety.

Neil has written extensively for several media outlets over the years and is currently posting his new stuff and the best of older interviews at TheNeilShow. This is a good site to add to your reading list.

ThEnEiLsHoW: Neil Bristow sits down and talks to Nashville Predators Goalie Pekka Rinne.

Neil Bristow - First off, I would like to congratulate you on an amazing first season with the Nashville Predators (52GP, 29 wins, 15 losses 2.38 G.A.A 9.17 SV %). Having a great rookie year in the goaltender position is not typically seen at this level. Can you talk a little bit about your
biggest highlights in your first full season in the net in the Music City?

Pekka Rinne - Thanks. I think the biggest highlight for me was playing many games and winning most of them. Obviously my first shutout was something I remember for the rest of my life. Also the youngstars game in Montreal was a great experience. Just playing first full season in the NHL was a highlight itself.

Neil Bristow - What is the best part about playing in a city like Nashville? Is it a fun city to play in, and what's it like living in Tennessee?

Pekka Rinne - It`s a great city. People are so nice and friendly. Nashville is really laid back and easygoing city, it was really easy to fit in and feel comfortable on and off the ice.

Neil Bristow - During the offseason what training and preparation do you do to get ready for the upcoming season? Do you train with any other NHLers or Preds in the summer?

Pekka Rinne - After the season I normally take 3 weeks off and just enjoy being back home in Finland. During the months of June and July I do only off ice training that consists weight training, running, explosive training (jumps, plyos, etc.) In the end of july we go on the ice and start preparing for the upcoming season. I train with couple NHL players from my hometown, Oulu and with my old team Karpat Oulu.

Neil Bristow - Who is your closest teammate on the Preds? Also, who is your closest friend in the NHL?

Pekka Rinne - I have many close friends on the Preds. My closest friend in the NHL is Rich Peverley (Atlanta) and Mika Pyorala (Philadelphia).

Neil Bristow - What aspects of the game would you like to work on to bring the Preds to the playoffs once again? What areas, in your opinion, do you think the Predators need to improve on to make it to the playoffs?

Pekka Rinne - I think if we can play full season at the level we finished last season, we are in playoffs. This year we need to have good start and go from there. I`m still learning and that never ends...I can be better in every aspect of the game of a goalie.

Neil Bristow - This upcoming season the Preds are going to rely on you even more for your solid goaltending. The so-called scouting report on you by "hockey experts" said one flaw in your game is that you can wear down if you are over- worked. What are your thoughts on those reports?

Pekka Rinne - I enjoy games where I have to work hard and make many saves. I think playing lot of games in the AHL helped me a lot. You just have to be in the best physical shape you can.

Neil Bristow - Who, in your opinion, is the most under- rated Predators player? What do they bring to the team that deserves more recognition?

Pekka Rinne - Joel Ward had a great first season in the NHL. He showed he can be put in to any situation on the ice and he`s still effective. I think he deserves more recognition.

Neil Bristow - The focus of recent sports new has been the on-going steroids problem in Major League Baseball. Do you think the NHL does sufficient Performance- Enhancing drug testing to make sure the same problem doesn't happen in hockey?

Pekka Rinne - Yes, I think so. We were tested many times last season. I think they are doing a really good job.

Neil Bristow - Can you share with us what the NHL’s drug-testing procedures are like? Is the testing random or scheduled, and how many times a year are you guys tested?

Pekka Rinne : It is random testing and they test every player individually, you can`t leave the rink until you are done testing.

Neil Bristow - Former NHLer, and St.Louis Blues, Tony Twist has said that there were PED'S in the NHL when he was playing. Would you be surprised if a player, current or retired, was caught using Performance Enhancing drugs?

Pekka Rinne - I would be very surprised if somebody would be caught using PED`s.

Neil Bristow - Your contract with the Nashville Predators expires in the 2010 season. Would it put you at ease to work out a new contract soon, or are you happy going into the final season of your deal?

Pekka Rinne - It`s something you are obviously aware of, but I`m not going to stress about it. I think if you keep doing the right things and work hard, everything`s going to work out eventually. Biggest thing is getting back to game form and getting better as a team.

Neil Bristow - Your teammate Steve Sullivan just finished re-signing with the Preds this summer. What does a player like Steve Sullivan bring to your club on and off the ice?

Pekka Rinne - It`s a huge confidence boost for our team and our fans. He`s an elite player and great person. It tells a lot about him, when he came back last year after missing two seasons, the level he performed since that was unbelievable. He`s one of our leaders on and off the ice.

Neil Bristow -You had an unbelievable World Championship IIHF for Finland with a .926 save percentage and a 1.93 GAA, with a shutout. What was your most memorable moment of that tournament and can you tell us a little bit about that experience?

Pekka Rinne - Most memorable moment was the first game against Norway, it was my first national team game and we won the game 5-0. Also, beating Canada was other highlight. Tournament was a great experience, it was honor to play for my country. We had a really good team and we played against some great teams. Unfortunately, we lost quarterfinal game against USA.

Neil Bristow - After playing in the World Championships this spring, do you see yourself competing for a spot with Finland in the upcoming Olympics in Vancouver?

Pekka Rinne - There many great Finnish goalies in the league right now, but yes, I feel that I have a chance make the Olympic roster. My goal is to have a good start to the season and be in the mix when they make the decision.

Neil Bristow -I was rather disappointed with the NHL not naming you as a finalist for the Calder trophy during the NHL Awards. In my opinion, starting out in the NHL as a goalie has to be the hardest position to have a break-out season. Were you a little shocked or disappointed at not being named a finalist?

Pekka Rinne - No I weren`t. I didn`t even think about the whole thing until at the end of the season a reporter asked my opinion about it. I think Steve Mason was a right choice.

Neil Bristow -Fans are often curious about what an off-season consists of for NHL players. What do you like to do when you’re away from the hockey rink? How did you spend your summer? Did you do any travelling, etc. this off-season?

Pekka Rinne - I did some traveling. I went to Croatia for a week, which was great. Also, I went to Paris, France for a five days. Other than traveling I did couple fishing trips around northern Finland and Sweden. During the off-season I try to spend time with my family and friends as much as possible.

Neil Bristow -Can you tell me what music you are into right now or your favorite song at this moment?

Pekka Rinne - I like rock music. But I`m starting to get into country music as well. My favorite song would be something from Neil Young.

Neil Bristow -Outside of Hockey, do you follow any other sports (football, soccer, baseball) If so, what teams do you follow? Who is your favorite athlete, and why?

Pekka Rinne - I follow soccer, especially the English Premier League. I cheer for Liverpool. My favorite athlete is Roger Federer, he is amazing athlete and the way he carries himself on and off the court is something I really admire.

Neil Bristow -I personally would like to thank you for giving me the time once again to do this with you. Do you have a message for Preds fans for the upcoming season?

Pekka Rinne - Thank you, Neil. Preds fans keep cheering us, you are our 7th man on the ice. I believe we`ll have many great moments this season!

I would like to say “thank you” to Pekka Rinne for giving me the time, once again, to interview him. I have done a lot of interviews in the last 4 years and I must say Pekka Rinne is one of my favorites.

He is a professional at so many levels and one of the nicest players I have had the chance to know. I wish Pekka Rinne, and his teammates, nothing but the best of luck and much success this upcoming season for the Nashville Predators. The city of Nashville and their fans have a truly great talent in between the pipes and I think you will see the rewards very soon. Good Luck Pekka!

I have started a “blog” type page to let everyone see my interviews. You can find the Pekka Rinne interview, and I will be putting up my old interviews from the last few seasons for you guys and gals to read. Please stop by and check out The Neil Show Blog.

Neil Bristow for PredsOnTheGlass

Predator's Roster Shakedown

Rainy (arc like) Weekends being what they are, caused me to sleep for an extended period this morning so today's update will be brief.

I'm headed over to the 303:30 studios in a few minutes to participate in a Predator Blogger Roundtable with the other Pred guys and girls that will be up later today.

After that, it will be time to get ready for tonight's last Predator pre-season game against the Carolina Hurricanes. It will be gut check time for a few youngsters that are trying to make final impressions on the Pred staff as to who will stay with the team.

For those keeping score on the roster, after yesterday's reduction, there are thirty players left in camp of which 22 or 23 will remain with the team for opening night.

I took a look at the remaining players and see 18 that are virtual locks at this point which would include Arnott, Goc, Legwand, Smithson, Jones, Sullivan, Belak, Dumont, Erat, Hornqvist, Tootoo, Ward, Hamhuis, Klein, Weber, Suter, Rinne and Ellis.

That leaves 12 players looking for four or five slots. Two more players that are close to being a lock are lock are Mike Santorelli for his improved play during the preseason and Alexander Sulzer primarily for his one way contract status as well as decent play in the preseason.

The Goalies are obviously set as there are only two left on the roster.

Francis Bouillon is in a class by himself as much of whether he makes the team revolves around his health and whether he is able to play at full speed to start the season. If not, he could start on injured reserve or receive a release.

So with that in mind, the three defensemen left in camp with a chance at one or two slots depending on Bouillon's fate are Laasko, Franson and Yonkman. Trotz has said that he may only carry six D-men so it will be critical to watch and see if these three play in this weekend's games and how they play.

So on the offensive side of the puck, from the above calculations I have 13 slots filled which leaves the possibility of one or two open positions.

Triston Grant is a special situation. He remains in camp primarily because Wade Belak may not be able to go in this weekend's games and the Preds will need somewhat of a pugilistic presence heading back into Columbus Sunday afternoon. He will be on the plane to Milwaukee early Monday.

That leaves Guite, Olvecky, Wilson, O'Reilly, and Spalling to choose from. Guite and Olvecky may have the inside track as there may not be enough ice time for the three youngsters to keep them around. Trotz has said that that may be the deciding factor of keeping an older player instead of a young guy in the final cut.

Again keep an eye on what happens this weekend. O'Reilly started slow in camp and has come on in the last week. A strong couple of games this weekend could put him in the mix again.

All this being said, additional injuries, a trade or a waiver pick-up could change the mix considerably. So for those of you scoring at home, this is the best guess as it stands today. Thoughts and flames on my analysis are welcomed.

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

Friday, September 25, 2009

Preds Whittle Roster Down By Four

As expected, the Nashville Predators made another round of cuts this morning as they move closer to the final 22 or 23 players that will be with the team on opening day. We expected something official from the Predators but John Glennon reports that Mark Dekanich, Jonathon Blum, Ben Eaves, and Andreas Thuresson have been sent to Milwaukee.

With several injuries the list of players remaining in camp is a bit larger than was originally intended. With games tomorrow and Sunday, the Preds need enough healthy bodies to fill out the game roster.

The players that were sent to Milwaukee will see immediate action as the Ads have games against Chicago tonight in Milwaukee and tomorrow night in Chicago.

With Francis Bouillon still not 100% and several other young defensemen yet to show consistency that the coaches would like to see, do not rule out the Predators cherry picking the waiver wire over the next week for another defenseman.

Likewise, if a forward that would be a good fit is waived, the Preds will not hesitate to make an addition to add additional scoring and depth. As it stands now, Mike Santorelli appears to have locked down the sixth forward position but the Preds could use another experienced player or two if the right ones become available at a good price.

By the process of elimination, here are the players that remain in camp with the Predators.

19 Jason Arnott
9 Marcel Goc
24 Ben Guite
11 David Legwand
48 Cal O'Reilly
53 Mike Santorelli
25 Jerred Smithson
33 Colin Wilson

21 Triston Grant
28 Ryan Jones
38 Peter Olvecky
13 Nick Spaling
26 Steve Sullivan

3 Wade Belak
71 J.P. Dumont
10 Martin Erat
27 Patric Hornqvist
22 Jordin Tootoo
29 Joel Ward

32 Cody Franson
2 Dan Hamhuis
8 Kevin Klein
4 Teemu Laakso
52 Alexander Sulzer
20 Ryan Suter
6 Shea Weber
34 Nolan Yonkman
Francis Bouillon

39 Dan Ellis
35 Pekka Rinne

More Later...

Buddy Oakes

TGIF and More

Good Friday Morning!

We have almost made it to the end of another week and have hockey on the agenda tomorrow night as the Predators will play the Hurricanes at 7 p.m. at the Sommet Center in their last home pre-season game.

The Predators return to camp at Centennial this morning at 11:00 and should have considerably fewer bodies on the ice. Barry Trotz indicated that there would be a round of cuts after the Team Building Day and that they would be down to close to the final roster before this weekend's games.

Additionally, The Admirals play their two exhibition games tonight and tomorrow so there will be some fast regrouping in Milwaukee as they get ready for their season.

I expect to see a release early this morning with ten to twelve additional cuts. I would imagine that the players that are leaving are already in transit or preparing to be as I write. Due to the injury situation with several regulars, a couple of extra players may hang on through this weekend's games for one final chance to make an impression.

Keep an eye on this space or Twitter as the morning progresses for the information on the next round of cuts.

In Pred Nation...

Forechecker has a rumor of possible trade talks between the Preds and Edmonton with his Breakfast Links. Dirk also has his 2009-10 Predators Preview, hot off the presses (or something like that). Further, Dirk takes a look at the Predators that are an option in fantasy leagues this season.

John Glennon has a good story about newcomer Ben Guite who recently completed his MBA degree. He takes a look at Pekka's unimpressive preseason numbers at Inside Predators.

Buried in a story that I saw Wednesday night was a note that Ryan Ellis was headed back to Windsor for last night's game against Erie where they raised the banner for their Memorial Cup season last year. I was mistaken in that I thought he was on the travel squad to Atlanta. The official announcement of his departure came mid-day yesterday.

Jim Diamond has the update on Ryan Ellis in his first game back in Juniors. He had two assists and was +3.

The City Paper has a story about young Predators that may make it past the cuts expected later today.

Rachel at What the Puck makes funny comments on a picture of a bus full of Preds going to Ft Campbell. Cheap Seat Queen gushes over another picture from yesterday's activities.

Steve Sullivan spoke on Twitter of the fine day the players had yesterday. @Sully26: "Would like to thank all the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment in Fort Campbell for all you did for us today. We had a great day!"

Admirals Shorts Shifts has the lowdown on Day 2 of the Milwaukee camp. Until the Preds make another round of cuts today, it will be difficult for them to get much accomplished other than looking at some of the younger guys. The Ads will play their first of two exhibition games tonight against the Chicago Wolves at Wilson Park Ice Arena at 7:00. Eric Kent (and possibly John Glennon) will appear on Admirals Center Ice Radio this week.

Around the NHL...

Drama of a different kind in Phoenix yesterday as Wayne Gretzky officially resigned as head coach. With the paychecks slated to end next week was it really a surprise? Here is the official text of the announcement from Wayne's own Blog.

Puck Daddy had the best spin of the day on Gretzky @wyshynski: "If you're a Gretzky fan, today is a great day. No one remembers Ted Williams as a shitty coach. Leave the bench, reclaim the legacy". Travis Hair has a good perspective piece at Five for Howling.

Craig Custance found a story on "The Great One" from the archives when Wayne was 16 years old.

The Coyotes already had a replacement in hand before the announcement on Gretzky was made. Dave Tippett was introduced as the new coach at a 3 p.m. presser yesterday. He is a good choice to try to take the young players and create some wins on the ice. Travis also shows his excitment about the hiring.

Off the ice, the NHL accused Jim Ballsillie latest offer of being "inaccurate and misleading". His company, RIM took a 15% hit on Wall Street due to poor earnings according to Sports By Brooks (7:13 PM Entry).

Fans of NHL Home Ice may have missed the announcement on Thursday morning on XM204 of the new roster of players in their daily line up. Morning man Scott Laughlin is switching places with Mike Ross who has been on in the afternoons. Peter Berce is also moving to mornings and will also join Mick Kern in the War Room as Dan Blakeley has left the crew. With Scott now on In The Slot in the afternoon, the show is going remote and moving permanently to Wayne Gretzky's Restaurant. Here is the complete audio of the announcements.

From The Hockey News comes their Western Conference picks and they have the Preds buried in 13th place in their predictions. Thank goodness for Colorado and Phoenix or they would have the Preds in last place. I don't know if it's snobbery or what, but THN never gives the Preds a break at all on anything. Here's their picks from the East.

(Parental Advisory) From Fanhouse comes a story about the most tasteless depiction of a death that I have ever heard of. While Steve McNair's situation was nothing to be proud of, it did not deserve this! I'm glad someone with a little judgment stepped in.

How long will this keep you occupied?

Finally, here is something sent by our friend @Karpo these are pretty funny: Awesomely BAD engagement photos

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Ellis "Officially" Sent Back to Windsor

What was written in the Windsor Star last night has now been made official by the Predators. Ryan Ellis has been returned to the Windsor Spitfires in time to play in tonight's game against Erie. In pregame ceremonies, the team will raise the banner for last year's Memoral Cup title and Ryan will be on hand to participate.

Here's the complete text of the release from the Predators...


-2009 First Round pick heads back to the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires -

Nashville, Tenn. (September 24, 2009) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has reassigned defenseman Ryan Ellis to his junior team, the Windsor Spitfires (OHL).

Ellis, Nashville’s first choice, 11th overall, in the 2009 Entry Draft, suited up for one preseason game during 2009 Training Camp. Nashville’s camp roster now sits at 34 players (3 goaltenders, 10 defensemen, 21 forwards).

The Predators close out the home portion of their 2009 preseason schedule on Saturday when they take on the Carolina Hurricanes at 7 p.m. at the Sommet Center. Tickets for this game, in addition to all 2009-10 regular season games can be purchased at Tickets are also available at the Sommet Center Box Office, by calling (615) 770-PUCK, or at all Ticketmaster outlets.

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

Preds Lose to Thrashers and More

All the thoughts of an undefeated preseason came crashing to an end last night as the out manned Nashville Predators fell to the Atlanta Thrashers by a 5-4 score. The Thrashers were led in scoring with two goals by ex-Pred Josh Gratton who is known more for punching faces rather than pucks into nets.

Marty Erat led the Preds in scoring with two goals but still finished -2 on the night. Other goals came from Peter Olvecky and Mike Santorelli who is really making his case for the sixth forward position. David Legwand and Patric Hornqvist each had two assists. The Preds out shot Atlanta 37-21.

The stats sheet makes it appear that neither Pekka Rinne (5 of 8 shots stopped) or Dan Ellis (11 of 13) was very effective in goal.

On Defense, both Ryan Suter and Shea Weber were +3 while the young guys looked to take a beating with Laaks0 and Sulzer each going -3. Francis Bouillon needs to make a quick recovery or the Preds may need to give Chris Chelios a call before he signs with the AHL Chicago Wolves.

After four exhibition games, I am somewhat disturbed with what we are looking at on the blue line. Paul McCann suggested that Ryan Ellis might play a couple of games before heading back to Juniors even though he sat last night. I could see that as being a good thing. You never know. He could stick.

The Predators head to Fort Campbell today for team building exercises before playing the final two preseason games this weekend. After meeting the Carolina Hurricanes Saturday at 7 p.m. at the Sommet Center, the Preds will travel to Columbus for a game Sunday afternoon to wrap up the pre-season.

I would expect several more cuts after today's outing as the Predators will try to use the last two games to get work for as many healthy regulars as possible. Expect Rinne and Ellis to each play a full game over the weekend.

In Pred Nation...

Jim Diamond used the stats sheet to try to get some ideas from last nights game. Here is his analysis. The Tennessean has the AP story. Here is the homer story from the AJC. has a lengthy analysis of the Predators team a week before league play opens. Here's a second post about specifics.

Mark Willoughby is checking out his new part-time gig at Hockey Independent with a discussion about the Jordin Tootoo- Tom Sestito fight last Saturday. Mark writes that it was a "staged" fight. Everyone who was aware of the circumstances knew Tootoo would be willingly lured into a fight. I was Tweeting about match-ups before the game.

I've got a post coming on the fight too with different issues to discuss. Rest assured, neither Mark nor I are "no fighting" type folks, but there are points that need to be dealt with in the physical part of the game.

Forechecker Dirk Hoag, Tom Callahan, Paul Nicholson and Derek Perez have been chosen to sit on a panel at Social Media Club Nashville on October 6 from 6 to 8 p.m.. This will be a conflict with the Predator's Meet the Team Party. Hopefully the Social Media Club will switch dates so that more can attend.

Forechecker was also a guest on Chris Wassel's The Program Podcast last night. Click here to hear our man Dirk in action.

Admirals Short Shifts has a complete summary from the Ads first day in camp yesterday. With so many of this year's eventual Admiral regulars still in Nashville, there are a lot of new faces in camp. Coach Lane Lambert comments on the battle for the second goalie slot between Chet Pickard and Jeremy Smith. There's good video coverage at the Ad's web site.

According to CSN Philly, the Flyers sent prospect Patrik Hersley to the Preds in exchange for "future considerations". The 6-3, 205 pound blue liner has played sparingly in North America the last two seasons, splitting time between the AHL and ECHL. Hersley was originally drafted in the fifth round, 139 overall, by the L. A. Kings. There is no apparent reason for the Pred's interest in the 23 year old Swedish native other than possibly organizational depth.

Dan Ellis makes the list of Top Ten Backup goalies at THN. That should not be a surprise to anyone.

The Montreal Gazette has more on Bouillon's potential return.

Around the NHL...

It was another crazy day in the Phoenix courtroom yesterday as Jim Ballsillie has basically dropped all his demands that the team move anytime before next June and appears to be making offers on the fly to do just about anything to win the courts favor. Judge Baum did not make any rulings on the proposed mediation and did not tip his hat on a time frame for any rulings.

David Shoalts from the Globe has his latest take on the Coyote's fiasco. The Toronto Star relied on the AP story.

Super Agent Alan Walsh thinks Ballsillie made big points @walsha: "Offering to keep team in Phx for 09-10, $25mil nonrefundable to Glendale + allow for search for local owner, he now makes compelling case".

Meanwhile as you can see from the poster, The Coyotes dropped the price of opening night tickets to $25 for the lower bowl and $15 elsewhere for the opening night game. If you act before 9:00 this morning you can beat the crowd.

Pierre LeBrun puts a cap on the Islander to Kansas City discussion with a post at ESPN.

Craig Custance has a store on veterans trying to make teams and has a Preds angle included.

Matt Reitz has more on the role of enforcers in the game.

Ryan at the RLD is down to a two team race for the cup. See who is left.

Olie Kolzig officially retired yesterday and the Washington Times talked to David Poile about him. Poile was the GM that officially made Olie a first round pick in 1989.

Hip Check Heaven has a Central Division preview and buries the Preds in the basement with some typical negative comments.

More Later...

Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Preds At Atlanta Tonight and More

Today will be a big day for the Predator youngsters who are still trying to make their impressions on the coaching staff. The Preds play tonight in Atlanta in what may be a final shot to impress or at least an effort to live through the next round of cuts which may come after tomorrow's Team Building Day at Fort Campbell.

Barry Trotz said on Tuedsay that those who did not practice will not make the trip today. The list included Wade Belak, Ben Eaves, Steve Sullivan, Joel Ward, Cody Franson, Colin Wilson, as well as the Pred's new man, Francis Bouillon. That will give plenty of opportunity on the offensive side to players like Mike Santorelli, Cal O'Reilly, Nick Spalling, and Andreas Thuresson.

It will be interesting to see who travels with the team on Defense as the final spot or two is sorted out. Tonight game will be at 6:00 Central at Phillips Arena in Atlanta and can be heard on 104.5 radio.

PM Update from John Glennon... Click here for travel squad. Atlanta squad listed here (H/T to Forechecker) Quotes from Atlanta's Morning skate.

We are still getting feedback from Monday's POTG Podcast. The show surpassed our previous highest rating both live and on podcast.

Our guests on Monday's POTG had a big day yesterday. Psycho Puck Lady's Tuesday Top Ten was another masterpiece with a look-alike list that included Wayne Gretzky and Princess Di. Who was the look-alike for a turd sandwich? . Go here for an answer to that and eight more and send her your thoughts for additions to the list. Parros and Borat is always one of my favorites on the jumbotron.

Nick Giglia spent the day tweeting from the Lighthouse Zoning hearing that turned into a big mess with the few opposing voices getting more than equal time than did the supporters. Chris Botta live blogged, most of which is posted here. B.D. Gallof has more. Kansas City is looking less like an option if the Isles were to move as explained here.

PM Addition... Nick Giglia's writeup of yesterday's event.

Michelle Kenneth gave a wrap-up of her thoughts on her visit to the show as well.

In Preds Nation...

John Glennon has a story today about pressure on the rookies at Preds Camp. Colin Wilson's injury is lessening his chance of making the final cut next week. Also, the presence of Francis Bouillon is putting added pressure on the young defenders as cuts are pondered.

Speaking of Bouillon, what seemed so with the rumors on Monday were not as they appeared. Bouillon apparently is of questionable health and the Predators have changed the terms of the leaked $750,000 contract into a professional tryout situation as Glennon reports. Lets give Chris Chelios a call too, and bring him in for a day or two to look at him while we are evaluating the health of veterans!

Jeremy at Section 303 has all the highlights of Tuesday's activity at the Predators camp. He has been a real lifeline during the entire camp, attending and reporting every day.

Rachel at What the Puck has a story about the "Cube" throwing a wrench into things.

Forechecker asked the question yesterday about Theo Fleury. If he gets cut loose by the Flames should the Preds give him a look? Dirk will appear on Chris Wassel's The Program tonight between 7:00 and 9:00 Central. If you have never listened to Chris's show this would be your chance. The Program is a close relative to POTG Radio as Chris and I support each other and appear on each others show on a regular basis. Here is Dirk's update for today as well as another question on Ryan Ellis and where he should play.

PM Update... Also on the Program will be Russ Cohen, author of 100 Ranger Greats

Mark at The View from 111 has another great perspective piece on unrest in all of pro sports. He also touched on the Predators Foundation in a separate post.

From the AJC comes this story about Ondrej Pavelec who will be in goal when the Thrashers face the Preds tonight. Will the Thrashers be whipped into a frenzy by this morning's special guest at practice. From @BenThrashers: "Special guest at morning skate today- AJC arranged for Evander Holyfield to come out and meet Evander Kane. Video later". Here's a pic that Ben Twitpiced of Holyfield and Evander Kane.

In less than a week's time AJ from Nashville has turned into a great part of the Pred's Blogger team. Combining wit and wisdom, he puts a great perspective on the events of the day. Today's post made me smile as I read it.

We'll give another shout out to the Pred's Face Off Luncheon that we wrote about yesterday. It will be on October 1 and every Preds player and coach will be there to hob nob with the attendees. If you are in need of getting an autograph for your Tootoo whistle, this could be the place.

Several potential future Preds that are assigned to the Preds's ECHL affiliate Cincinnati, have been sent to the Admirals camp in Milwaukee.

Also from Milwaukee, Ryan Miller thinks that Cody Franson should stick with the Preds.

In Milwaukee, today is the first day of on ice drills leading up to a preseason game on Friday.

Addicted comes up to speed on the Preds with a new post as does Confessions of a Predator Fanatic. It is wonderful to have such a variety of folks writing about the Preds.

If you speak the language, this is probably a great article about Patric Hornqvist. (I finally got Google to work on this, here is the English link) About Nashville he says "It's a really beautiful city with plenty of Western influences." Is he talking cowboy hats or what?

Around the NHL...

More signs of desperation in the desert last night when former Coyotes owner Jerry Moyes went to the Glendale City Council meeting to plead with them to accept Jim Ballsillie's offer. Heather McWhorter of Save the Coyotes was able to rally the troops and have a presence at the meeting. Since Moyes wasn't on the agenda, he was only able to speak for 2 1/2 minutes at the end of the session.

PM Update from AZ Republic... Ballsille concedes Coyotes will play full season in AZ regardless of what happens.

PM Update... From @reporterchris: Lower bowl tickets for #coyotes Oct. 10 opener being sold for $25. Upper bowl $15.

John Grigg at The Hockey News has a perspective piece about the financial troubles of Cleveland and Minnesota in the late 70's and the pressure exerted by the World Hockey Association and compares it to the NHL situation today. This could be an addendum to Chris Wassel's and my NHL Apocalypse stories from the summer.

From @nhlpanewmedia: "Veteran goalie Olaf Kolzig retires today following stellar 14-year career"

Ryan at the RLD has a list of breakout players for this season. Which Pred gets an honorable mention?

Puck Report has mention of a milestone 17 years ago today when Manon Rheaume played with Tampa Bay against St. Louis.

There has always been speculation about what drives Eklund to do what it is he does. He released a "manifesto" of sorts yesterday with his own explanation. Interesting.

Slam Sports has a story that is a few days old about the NBA monitoring it's player's Tweets after a few have gotten out of hand. With hockey players showing good judgment so far, can the NHL avoid this type of big brother activity?

Mirtle has some expert Fantasy Hockey advice at the Globe and Mail. Across town, XM 204's Rob Higgins is back with his Fantasy outlook at the Toronto Sun. Rob and Boomer will be on for two hours this PM from 3-5 Central with their fantasy preview show.

A pro franchise that may have a dimmer future than the Phoenix Coyotes is the Jacksonville Jaguars. Read this account and see for yourself. What wil the NHL do about it?

Finally, congrats to friend of POTG Sarah Connors who was chosen as the Hendrick's Hockey "Hockey Girl of the Week."

More Later...

Buddy Oakes