Predators File for Arbitration with Weber


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The Predators recently filed for arbitration with Shea Weber the team’s captain. While I know I am a little late on the news, I wanted to get some thoughts in about the situation.

While some may see this as a breakdown in negotiations between the two sides, I see it as a brilliant move by Poile to insure Weber will be with the team for at least another year. Poile and Weber have both stated their wishes to sign a long term deal so that Weber can remain a Predator for a long time, and this gives Poile time to do that. The hearings cannot take place until after July 20th, so that gives Poile some extra time and teams cannot make an offer sheet to the Preds trying to poach Weber.

While I did not fully understand everything about arbitration I looked into it and from what I could find, when the team files for arbitration, they cannot walk away from the offer that is awarded to the player, and before the hearing the player decides whether he wants a one or two year deal with the team. That is significant for the Predators because we all know the unpredictability that goes with arbitration and sometimes players are awarded absurd salaries and that is the risk the Predators have taken. If a deal is not done Weber can ask for a two year deal so that when it expires he is an UFA and can make bank on July 1st. But the major risk is the offer he may get from arbitration, a player of Weber’s calibre if the Predators are unlucky could be awarded 8 million or up which would not allow the team to add any offence and would seriously handicap them for next year when some important players need a new contract.

While I don’t believe that will happen, I hope that Weber and the Predators come to a deal before that and sign long term at around 6.5 or 7 million a year for about 6 or 7 years. The team needs Weber more than they realize, and losing him could really hurt even with all our defence as a player like him doesn’t come around to often. Another scenario is that he signs a one year deal through arbitration and then uses next year to work out a long term deal.

Also as a side note, just before negotiations Weber switched agencies so that may be why Poile needed the extra time.

Greg Duley (@G_Duley)

5 Comments

Chuck Gaston Jr's picture

Weber was the best defenseman last season and has proved over the past few seasons how valuable he really is to this club. He is consistantly one of their highest point scorers, the rock on both the PK and PP, and can shut down anyone in the game. I hope he stays in Nashville, they have so much going for them right now with their recent playoff performance, it would be a shame to see him leave. He is also one of the most underrated Captains in the league.

Greg Duley's picture

I agree with you Chuck, even with all the publicity he gets, i think he is still slightly under ratted because he plays for Nashville. I would hate to seem him leave as both a fan and for the team as they are becoming an upper level team in the NHL and are headed in the right direction.

George Prax's picture

How can he be underrated if he's nominated for the Norris and getting all this attention? Tongue. If anything people are OVERRATING him a bit in the sense that they're attributing most of the Preds success to his contributions, and not their well-balanced line-up.

Greg Duley's picture
George Prax wrote:

How can he be underrated if he's nominated for the Norris and getting all this attention? Tongue. If anything people are OVERRATING him a bit in the sense that they're attributing most of the Preds success to his contributions, and not their well-balanced line-up.

What i meant was that for example if he played in the East or on another club, he would have already of gotten all this attention a couple of years ago and this wouldn't be new. But because of where he plays only now has his "coming out party" started ever since he played for Canada.
But now he is just too good to hide in Nashville and people are taking notice, especially after these past playoffs.

George Prax's picture

I think everyone's always known he's a great player. Maybe not the "casual" fans but then again they barely now anything that isn't Crosby of Ovechkin. The core definitely knows who he is. It's more of a matter of him coming into his own as a top 5 defenseman in the league. The guy's only 25.