clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

3 Questions with On the Forecheck

New, comments

Even more questions and answers with On the Forecheck

Mike Strasinger-USA TODAY Sports

As a daily double of questions and answers about the Nashville Predators (we really want you to know about them), we talked to our friends at On the Forecheck. They have a great blog over there so check 'em out throughout the year to keep track of our old friend James Neal.

#1: A couple games in what is the feeling on James Neal? Still as giddy to have him as when the trade was announced?

I was probably the most giddy when the trade was announced, and speaking to you immediately after his hat trick against Chicago, I'm sure I have some company. He's the type of player we just haven't seen to much here in Nashville...a legit scorer who can put the puck in the net from just about anywhere on the ice. Everybody here loves Patric Hornqvist. His start for the Pens really shows the type of player he can be, but he never would've put up those numbers here because last time I checked we don't have Sidney Crosby. So it's looking like a win-win trade so far. And I may or may not have a legit plan to obtain as many as 5 James Neal bobble heads on Saturday. Quietly clearing some wedding photos off the mantle to make room was a little tricky but I think I pulled it off. My wife isn't going to read this right? Probably not.

#2: Nashville under Barry Trotz was a defensive machine but had trouble scoring consistently. How has the transition to Peter Laviolette gone and do you think the Predators have the roster to compete for a playoff spot in a very tough division?

As the president of the Fire Trotz Club, I couldn't be happier with the coaching change. Frankly, he should've been fired 2 years ago. To say that the most recent Trotz teams had trouble scoring is an understatement of epic proportions. The last couple of seasons, being down a goal in the second was just about a guaranteed loss. Very difficult to watch. Coupled with his bizarre statements and roster decisions, it was finally time to go. The Laviolette era has started pretty well. He's a proven winner and he talks about offense a lot, which people seem to like. Whether the Preds have enough to make the playoffs is an open question, but right now I like their odds. The division is tough, but everyone has their questions. If we're still in the upper tier of the Western Conference standings in December I'll feel better about it.

#3: The Preds seemingly have a lot of young talent about to breakout and become solid NHL players. Who are some of the young players you are most excited about?

Filip Forsberg is the clear leader here. Coming into the season, we weren't sure if he'd even make the team. Now he's playing (and thriving) on the top line, tied for the lead among rookies with 7 points and the leader in assists and +/-. Among the next tier, Calle Jarnkrok is a guy we really like. He's been overshadowed a bit by Forsberg's start, but he's going to be a very solid NHL player. The AHL affiliate in Milwaukee is stacked (and 4-0-0 as of Friday), and our first round draft pick last year, Kevin Fiala, is lighting it up over in Sweden right now. With everybody here seemingly on 1-year deals, some of these guys will see some action pretty soon. The future is bright.

I was probably the most giddy when the trade was announced, and speaking to you immediately after his hat trick against Chicago, I'm sure I have some company. He's the type of player we just haven't seen to much here in Nashville...a legit scorer who can put the puck in the net from just about anywhere on the ice. Everybody here loves Patric Hornqvist. His start for the Pens really shows the type of player he can be, but he never would've put up those numbers here because last time I checked we don't have Sidney Crosby. So it's looking like a win-win trade so far. And I may or may not have a legit plan to obtain as many as 5 James Neal bobble heads on Saturday. Quietly clearing some wedding photos off the mantle to make room was a little tricky but I think I pulled it off. My wife isn't going to read this right? Probably not.