In the last 24 hours, the Nashville Predators continued to piece together the puzzle that will be the final product that will hit the ice in October.
Since Hal Gil signed last week, the Predators have added Paul Gaustad, Brian McGrattan, Chris Mason, and minor leaguer, Kevin Henderson.
The one piece that remains an unknown is that of Ryan Suter. David Poile met with the media late Sunday and sounded like he was becoming increasingly impatient with Suter's indecision. A video of the discussion can be found here.
The re-signing of Gaustad is significant as it brings back the game's best face-off specialist and adds stability to the penalty kill team that was the leagues best last season.
The retutn of Chris Mason will make every Predator fan smile. Chris played parts of six seasons in Nashville and was a favorite among fans, coaches and teammates and will be the perfect complement to Prkka Rinne in goal. He had his best years under goalie coach Mitch Korn and he should returtn to that form again.
McGrattan's re-signing insures that the smash will remain in Smashville. His play down the stretch last year was limited due to injury and the competitiveness of the playoff race. The big guy is the best enforcer that the Preds have ever had and fans will be thrilled to see him in action once again.
Make the jump for all of the releases from the Predators on the signings...
NASHVILLE PREDATORS SIGN PAUL GAUSTAD TO A FOUR-YEAR CONTRACT
Nashville, Tenn. (July 1, 2012) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has signed forward Paul Gaustad to a four-year, $13 million contract.
Gaustad, 30 (2/3/82), has finished no lower than seventh in the NHL in face-off efficiency in each of the past three seasons, and ranked ninth among League forwards in average shorthanded time on ice in 2011-12 (2:45). Acquired from Buffalo along with a fourth-round pick in the 2013 Entry Draft from Buffalo for a first-round pick in the 2012 Entry Draft on Feb. 27, 2012, the 6-5, 212-pound center posted four assists in 14 regular-season games for the Predators, completing his seventh NHL campaign with 21 points (7g-14a) and 76 penalty minutes in 70 regular-season games between Buffalo and Nashville. The Portland, Ore., native also appeared in all 10 of Nashville’s postseason games, posting a pair of points (1g-1a) – including its first goal of the postseason – in addition to ranking seventh in postseason face-off efficiency (60.1 percent).
Buffalo’s sixth selection, 220th overall (seventh round) in the 2000 Entry Draft has appeared in 493 career regular-season games, amassing 185 points (71g-114a) and 591 penalty minutes and 48 playoff contests, posting 10 points (1g-9a) and 42 penalty minutes.
NASHVILLE PREDATORS AGREE TO TERMS WITH CHRIS MASON ON A ONE-YEAR CONTRACT
- Inaugural season Predator returns to Nashville -
Nashville, Tenn. (July 1, 2012) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has agreed to terms with goaltender Chris Mason on a one-year contract worth $1.25 million and $250,000 in potential bonuses for a cap hit of $1.5 million.
Mason, 36 (4/20/76), returns to Predators’ organization where he spent eight seasons from 1998-2002 and 2003-08. The Red Dear, Alta., native posted a 58-43-12 record with a 2.61 goals-against average a .913 save percentage in 135 games with the Predators in addition to playing 173 games for the team’s primary developmental affiliate, the Milwaukee Admirals. Since his most recent departure from Nashville, he has played two seasons for St. Louis (2008-10) and two seasons for Atlanta/Winnipeg (2010-12), most recently posting an 8-7-1 mark with a 2.59 goals-against average and a .898 save percentage and a pair of shutouts in 20 games for the Jets in 2011-12.
New Jersey’s seventh selection, 122nd overall (fifth round), in the 1995 Entry Draft has appeared in 306 career NHL games notching a 136-106-31 record, a 2.63 goals-against average, a .910 save percentage and 23 shutouts.
NASHVILLE PREDATORS AGREE TO TERMS WITH BRIAN MCGRATTAN
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (July 1, 2012) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has agreed to terms with forward Brian McGrattan on a one-year contract worth $600,000.
McGrattan, 30 (9/2/81), appeared in 30 games with the Predators in 2011-12, posting two assists and 61 penalty minutes. Claimed on waivers from Anaheim on Oct. 11, 2011, the 6-4, 235-pound winger has 13 points (3g-13a) and 456 penalty minutes in 212 NHL contests with Ottawa, Phoenix, Calgary and Nashville since 2005-06.
McGrattan was selected 104th overall (fourth round) by the Los Angeles Kings in the 1999 NHL Entry Draft.
NASHVILLE PREDATORS SIGN HENDERSON TO A ONE-YEAR CONTRACT
Nashville, Tenn. (July 1, 2012) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has signed free agent forward Kevin Henderson to a one-year, two-way contract worth $550,000 at the NHL level and $50,000 at the AHL level.
Henderson, 25 (12/3/86), signed with the Predators’ ECHL affiliate, the Cincinnati Cyclones, on Feb. 1, 2012, but played just two games with the Cyclones before being loaned to Milwaukee (AHL) for the remainder of the 2011-12 season where he posted 11 points (4g-7a) in 30 regular-season games and dressed for all three of the Admirals 2012 Calder Cup Playoff contests. The 6-3, 210-pound left wing began his professional career – and played the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons – in the San Jose Sharks organization.
A native of Toronto, Henderson helped the University of New Brunswick win the 2009 CIS National Championship and received 2008-09 CIS All-Canadian Honorable Mention after tying for fifth in the nation in points (19g-31a-50pts) and goals, and ranked fourth in assists and plus/minus (+31). He was teammates with current Predators Nick Spaling (2005-07) and Matt Halischuk (2006-07) with the Kitchener Rangers, tying Halischuk for the Rangers goal lead in 2006-07 (33).
Buddy Oakes for PredsOnTheGlass