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Instant Analysis: Gill Signing

Thursday, 06.28.2012 / 4:03 PM CT / Features
By Jay Levin  - Nashville Predators
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Instant Analysis: Gill Signing
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Hal Gill’s two-year contract to return to the Preds provides a major piece to the framework of the team’s defensive corps for next season. With Gill back in the fold, the pairings for next season appear to have significantly more clarity. Shea Weber and Ryan Suter – GM David Poile has made it clear that while he anticipates a favorable decision from Suter, the Preds have other targets identified for top-pairing minutes if Suter exercises his option to play elsewhere – at the top of the depth chart. Roman Josi appears in line for second-pairing minutes, either matched with Kevin Klein or Gill; both combinations had significant success for key stretches last season and both combinations are likely to get looks over the course of the 2012-13 season. The other of Klein/Gill is likely to serve as a veteran mentor to one of Nashville’s young talented defensemen --- with Jon Blum, Ryan Ellis, and Mattias Ekholm the three most likely candidates to win NHL spots out of camp, but don’t discount Finnish free agent signee Joonas Jarvinen, a more physical defensive presence.

But having Klein and Gill as a veteran presence for the second and third pairings – plus stability on the penalty kill and in late-game pressure situations – gives the Preds a calming influence heading into 2012-13.

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WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 51 24 7 228 221 109
2 y - STL 82 51 24 7 239 197 109
3 x - NSH 82 47 25 10 226 202 104
4 x - CHI 82 48 28 6 220 186 102
5 x - VAN 82 48 29 5 236 220 101
6 x - MIN 82 46 28 8 227 198 100
7 x - WPG 82 43 26 13 223 204 99
8 x - CGY 82 45 30 7 237 213 97
9 LAK 82 40 27 15 218 197 95
10 DAL 82 41 31 10 257 257 92
11 COL 82 39 31 12 209 223 90
12 SJS 82 40 33 9 224 226 89
13 EDM 82 24 44 14 193 276 62
14 ARI 82 24 50 8 165 267 56

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
F. Forsberg 82 26 37 15 63
M. Ribeiro 82 15 47 11 62
R. Josi 81 15 40 15 55
S. Weber 78 15 30 15 45
C. Smith 82 23 21 11 44
C. Wilson 77 20 22 19 42
M. Fisher 59 19 20 4 39
J. Neal 67 23 14 12 37
R. Ellis 58 9 18 8 27
S. Jones 82 8 19 3 27
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Rinne 41 17 6 .923 2.18
C. Hutton 6 7 4 .902 2.61