Since coming into the NHL in 1998, as an expansion team, the Nashville Predators have never been to a Western Conference Final. On May 7th, that all changed. Nashville won their second round series against the St. Louis Blues 4 games to 2. This is coming after a sweep of the Chicago Blackhawks in the first round. The Predators have looked dominant so far in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. They have an 8-2 record through two rounds.
So what can be credited with this massive turnaround from losing in the first round (2015) to losing in the second round (2016) and moving on to the Conference Final? Two words……David Poile. Poile has been the General Manager of the Nashville Predators since they came into the league. He has been responsible for every player drafted, every trade, and every signed free agent. Over the last couple of years, Poile has made some big and risky trades. In April 2013, Poile traded Martin Erat and Michael Latta to the Washington Capitals in exchange for winger Filip Forsberg. Forsberg has 8 points in 10 games and is averaging 20:37 in ice time. In January 2016, he traded away Seth Jones for Ryan Johansen. Jones was the 4th overall pick in the 2013 draft. Johansen has been no slouch and has added much-needed depth at the Center position. On Sunday, he scored the game-winning goal to send them to the Conference Final. In June of 2016, he pulled off a blockbuster trade with the Montreal Canadiens send defenseman Shea Weber for P.K. Subban. All three of these trades have come as a shock to the NHL and with all of them, he is batting 1.000.
If the Predators do not advance past the Conference Finals, what moves will we see Poile make this upcoming offseason?