Mikael Granlund is returning to the Predators on a four-year, $20 million contract.
— Adam Vingan (@AdamVingan) July 28, 2021
Nashville Predators Have Re-Signed Mikael Granlund
Mikael Granlund re-ups with the Predators organization having already spent parts of three seasons in Smashville. General manager David Poile originally acquired him in a trade with the Minnesota Wild during the 2018-19 season, who, in return, got Kevin Fiala.; it was a rare one-for-one transaction. A first-round pick (9th overall) back in 2010, Granlund has scored 124 goals and 379 points during his nine-year NHL career.
Since John Hynes has come in, Granlund has proven himself as a versatile player within the Predators’ top-six. He is a hardworking grinder with a decent shot and complements highly skilled forwards and goalscorers alike. What’s more, the 29-year old had a productive season offensively in 2020-21; he tied for first in goals in all situations (13), ranked second in powerplay goals (five) and finished fourth on the team in primary assists per 60.
What’s clear is that Granlund has the trust of the head coach. This season, he has played the most minutes of any Predators forward. He’s averaged over a minute more ice time per night (19:27) than even Filip Forsberg (18:17), who’s in second place.
What This Means Going Forward
The Predators have locked up an important part of their top six for next year. Granlund’s signing ensures certain stability within the roster which provides scope for further opportunities for younger prospects.
In terms of roster construction, John Hynes will likely have Granlund on the second line again, partnering with Luke Kunin. When on the ice together last season, this line combination outscored opponents 16-7 at five on five.
Ultimately, this team, under its current construction does not have the ability to mount a serious challenge on the Central Division. But veteran players like Granlund will aid Nashville’s soft reset and keep them competitive in the process. All in all, this is a net-win for Predators fans.
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