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Josi’s Deal All About Potential

Tuesday, 06.11.2013 / 2:53 PM CT / Features
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Josi\u2019s Deal All About Potential

By Jonathan Rawson

On Monday, Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced that the organization has signed defenseman Roman Josi to a seven-year, $28 million contract. Since being selected by the Predators 38th overall in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, Josi has shown marked improvement in his ever increasing role.

Poile raved about the young defenseman, “Last year, we saw the growth in Roman almost like no other player we have had. Probably the best comparison I can come up with is Shea Weber and Ryan Suter. The irony of that, of course, is that Roman fit in very nicely into Ryan’s position last year.”

In search of a replacement for departed All-Star blueliner Ryan Suter, the Predators turned to the young Swiss product. He gelled seamlessly with defensive partner Shea Weber, registering 18 points (5g-13a) while appearing in all 48 of Nashville’s games during the truncated 2013 season.

“It’s a natural situation with how well they (Josi and Weber) played together last year,” Poile said, “Both of them are guys who can take huge minutes… I think it presents lots of options. With Josi and Weber on the blue line, you have two top players.”

Building off the 2013 NHL season, Josi had a fantastic showing at last month’s IIHF World Championships. He was voted Tournament MVP, Best Defenseman, and a member of the tournament All-Star Team. He recorded nine points (4g-5a) in 10 tournament games and led Switzerland to a silver medal, the nation’s first medal at the Championships in 60 years.

At just 23, Josi has posted 34 points (10g-24a) while suiting up in only 100 NHL games. Signing a young player like Josi to a long-term deal seems risky to some. However, both Josi and Poile are confident in both the direction of the franchise and Josi’s career.

“Just turning 23 last week, the potential is certainly there for Roman to be one of the best defensemen in the National Hockey League,” Poile asserted, “Obviously, signing him to seven years ensures that we will have our top defensive pairing intact for a number of years.”

“Nashville is a great organization and they do everything to win,” Josi said, “We had a bad season last year, but I think the year before we had a pretty good season. I think we are close to making it really far. I know Nashville is going to do everything to get back on that track and that is why I signed a long term deal.”

Josi’s deal is worth $28 million over seven years. Josi will make $2.5 million in 2013-14, $3 million in 2014-15, $4 million in 2015-16, $4.25 million in 2016-17, $5 million in 2017-18, $5.25 million in 2018-19 and $4 million in 2019-20.

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STANDINGS
 

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 CHI 56 36 16 4 158 128 76
2 DAL 53 33 15 5 170 142 71
3 STL 55 30 17 8 132 129 68
4 LAK 51 31 17 3 135 117 65
5 SJS 51 27 20 4 147 138 58
6 NSH 53 25 20 8 136 139 58
7 COL 55 27 24 4 148 152 58
8 ANA 51 25 19 7 113 121 57
9 MIN 52 23 20 9 127 126 55
10 ARI 52 24 22 6 138 161 54
11 VAN 52 20 20 12 120 142 52
12 CGY 51 23 25 3 134 148 49
13 WPG 52 23 26 3 136 150 49
14 EDM 54 21 28 5 132 164 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Josi 53 10 27 -2 37
S. Weber 53 14 21 -4 35
F. Forsberg 53 15 18 -6 33
M. Ribeiro 53 6 27 3 33
J. Neal 53 19 13 18 32
M. Ekholm 53 6 16 3 22
R. Ellis 52 6 15 2 21
C. Smith 53 11 6 -1 17
C. Jarnkrok 52 9 7 0 16
C. Wilson 36 4 12 0 16
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Rinne 20 17 7 .904 2.50
C. Hutton 5 2 1 .916 2.36