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Nashville Predators Extend Affiliation Agreement with the AHL's Milwaukee Admirals

Preds’ top affiliate has reached playoffs in 13 of 14 seasons; have won four division titles in the last eight years

Thursday, 05.8.2014 / 10:00 AM CT / News
By Press Release  - Nashville Predators
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Nashville Predators Extend Affiliation Agreement with the AHL\'s Milwaukee Admirals
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Nashville, Tenn. – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has extended its affiliation agreement with the Milwaukee Admirals of the American Hockey League through the 2016-17 season.

“Our organization has been philosophically committed to an affiliation in which the road to Nashville goes through Milwaukee,” Poile said. “Our current roster supports this philosophy. The Milwaukee Admirals have cultivated a winning tradition, as evidenced by their 12 consecutive trips to the playoffs – including a Calder Cup Championship in 2004 and another appearance in the Calder Cup Finals in 2006. Led by Harris Turer, the Milwaukee ownership group has assembled a bright and dedicated staff headed by President Jon Greenberg, that has created a major league environment for our prospects.

“With the Milwaukee organization working together with ours, led by Paul Fenton [Milwaukee’s general manager and Nashville’s assistant GM], this has been and will continue to be a partnership that rewards both teams, and most importantly, the hockey fans in both cities.”

The Predators and Admirals have functioned as affiliates since Nashville’s inception in 1998-99, and more than 140 players have played at least one game for both teams in the past 16 seasons. Additionally, six of Milwaukee’s head or assistant coaches have graduated to the NHL level, including Predators Assistant Coach Lane Lambert, who manned the Admirals helm for four seasons from 2007-11, and current Columbus Blue Jackets Head Coach Todd Richards, who was an assistant with Milwaukee from 2002-06.

Many of Nashville’s core players spent time with the Admirals, including four of their top five point-getters in 2013-14. Two-time Olympic Gold Medalist, three-time Norris Trophy finalist and Predators captain Shea Weber started his pro career with Milwaukee in 2005-06; Patric Hornqvist started his North American career with Milwaukee in 2008-09 before putting up more than 20 goals in four consecutive full seasons for Nashville from 2009-14; Craig Smith spent time in his home state of Wisconsin during the 2012-13 campaign and Roman Josi notched 40 points (6g-34a) for the Ads in 2010-11 before bursting onto the NHL scene. Two-time Vezina Trophy finalist Pekka Rinne spent his first three seasons in North America with the Ads from 2005-08 and was with them on a conditioning stint from Feb. 28-March 2, 2014, while roster mainstays Colin Wilson, Nick Spaling, Gabriel Bourque, Ryan Ellis, Mattias Ekholm and Victor Bartley all spent time developing in Milwaukee before becoming full-time players in Nashville.

In 2013-14 alone, forwards Calle Jarnkrok, Filip Forsberg, Colton Sissons, Simon Moser, Mark Van Guilder, Taylor Beck; defenseman Joe Piskula; and goaltenders Rinne, Marek Mazanec and Magnus Hellberg appeared in games for both franchises.

The Admirals are one of only two teams to make it to the Calder Cup Playoffs in each of the last 12 seasons, with late-season surges the past three seasons helping to extend the streak. They went 16-5-1 in their final 22 games of the 2013-14 regular season to claim the Western Conference’s sixth seed, and in both 2011-12 and 2012-13, they claimed the Western Conference’s eighth and final playoff spot with wins on the final day of the campaign. The Admirals have accumulated the second-most points in the AHL since joining in 2001-02 after 24 seasons in the International Hockey League.

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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