Nashville, Tenn. (WKRN)- The Nashville Predators wrapped up the preseason on Saturday with an overtime win in Carolina and now the real work begins.
The Preds only lost one game in the preseason and while that doesn’t mean much, there were plenty of encouraging things that happened over the last couple weeks of training camp.
The power play was a thorn in the Preds’ side last season, finishing at the bottom of the league at 12.9%, but with the hiring of Assistant Coach Dan Lambert, they’ll have to be much better.
There were certainly hints of improvement throughout training camp, and with the addition of Centerman Matt Duchene, the first power play unit seems to be in fine shape.
Duchene is as good as advertised, that’s what his new teammates are saying. He has a high skill set with the ability to shoot better than most and so far the Preds have utilized him successfully in front of the net. The power play might not rise to the top overnight, but improvement seems possible.
With P.K. Subban gone, it looks like the young Dante Fabbro is ready to take on a big boy role. His work ethic and mature approach to the game is impressive for a 21-year-old. The question now is, who will he pair up with this season? The answer is likely Mattias Ekholm on the second pair, behind Roman Josi and Ryan Ellis. We’ll just have to wait and see.
The depth of this Nashville team is also something to be happy about. There are plenty of forwards to go around and while Eeli Tolvanen, Rem Pitlick, Anthony Richard and Colin Blackwell have all been assigned to Milwaukee, it’s good to know they are all capable of coming up, if needed.
Getting off to a good start is something that never hurts, but like we saw last season, finishing strong is what really matters. The Predators being their regular season on Thursday when they host the Minnesota Wild at Bridgestone Arena.