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Suter re-signing in Nashville seems like a long shot

May 8, 2012, 6:12 PM EDT

Ryan Suter Getty Images

“We’ve never had a timeline or deadline. We’re just focusing on winning. Everything else will take care of itself…I don’t see it being a benefit by hurrying up and trying to get something done. I’m a Nashville Predator until July. I will focus on making my team better.” – Ryan Suter (Jan. 27, 2012)

“Right now I am kind of disappointed about how tonight went and I haven’t really thought about [my future].” – Suter (May 7, 2012)

But he’ll have to think about it soon. It’s not long until he’s set to become an unrestricted free agent (July 1), and they’re already salivating at the thought of landing the star defenseman in Detroit.

No surprise there — the Red Wings have piles of cap space and Nicklas Lidstrom can’t play forever.

Oh, and considering Suter was born in Wisconsin, played for the National Team Development Program in Ann Arbor, and spent a season with the Badgers in Madison, it’s impossible not to wonder if he’d prefer living closer to home.

How much the Predators’ failure to advance past the second round will factor into his decision is unknown. Maybe he’s already made up his mind. But if he only wants to play where he can compete for a Stanley Cup, it probably didn’t help the club’s chances of convincing him to stay.

Nor can it be assumed a huge contract offer will sell the 27-year-old on signing long-term in Nashville. Wherever he signs, Suter will get paid.

Besides, who’s to say the Predators won’t be back to pinching pennies in a few years? Nashville’s ownership group showed the money to Pekka Rinne and let GM David Poile load up on contracts for a playoff run, but the Preds aren’t among the leaders in generating revenue, and probably won’t ever be.

We already mentioned Detroit as a potential landing spot, but it’s far from the only one.

The Flyers would undoubtedly make room for Suter, given Chris Pronger might never play again and Kimmo Timonen just turned 37.

The Bruins would love to have Suter quarterbacking their troublesome power play. If they have to ship out a guy like Dennis Seidenberg, so be it.

It’s not often all-star defensemen hit the open market, especially at 27 years old. Where Suter plays next season is up to him, and unfortunately for Preds fans, there’s good reason to believe it’ll be somewhere other than Nashville.

Not that all hope is lost.

“You look around at some of the players that maybe have unrestricted free agency,” Poile said today, as per The Tennessean. (There are) some players that may not want to come back, and we may not want them. But having said that, I hope the core wants to stay here and that we can retain them because we have a core that can compete with anybody.”

  1. ray2013 - May 8, 2012 at 6:21 PM

    How many teams have a good cap situation to make a significant offer to Suter, or other potential free agents?

    • lordfletcher - May 8, 2012 at 11:33 PM

      is that an honest question? Check out capgeek… I would say about 10-15 teams will be looking to make offers at Suter and Parise

      • ray2013 - May 10, 2012 at 3:28 AM

        It was an honest question; I forgot about capgeek when I was writing that comment.Thanks for the non-snarky comment lordfletcher.

    • norseman81 - May 9, 2012 at 12:15 AM

      Minnesota Wild! His wife is from Bloomington, Mn and it is only 4 hours from Madison! My bet is he gets 7.5 per from Minny for 7 years and signs with Minny. Otherwise he goes to Detroit

      • lordfletcher - May 9, 2012 at 12:22 AM

        As a Wild fan myself… I doubt Suter comes here. It’s more likely we trade for Weber if contract talks go badly before the draft.

        I think Detroit fans are overrating their chances a bit because you can sense that the magic in that town is slowly fading…. In no way is that a knock on the Wings, trust me I am very jealous of your teams success over the past 20 years!!!!!!!

        Suter will have plenty of options, as of now, it’s just too soon to gauge where he will be going. I would put the Wild and Wings in the top 5, if that makes any sense after my ramble.

      • norseman81 - May 10, 2012 at 11:16 AM

        My theory on this stems from meeting and speaking with his mother on April 1st in Madison. She made it very clear that she would like to have him closer and without saying anything, if the Wild paid him enough money, that is where he would be playing next Fall. Again his wife is from Minnesota and his mother is too. I don’t think the immediate chances of winning a cup are the highest priority. With the Wild’s prospects coming up, the future is bright and I believe that will only be icing on the cake for him to sign with Minnesota for 7.5 Mill per for 7 or 8 years

      • lordfletcher - May 9, 2012 at 12:25 AM

        also you must live closer to the WI border than I do. As a resident of Eden Prairie, it’s more like a 5 hour drive to Madison ;)

        Here is to hoping Suter comes to Minny

  2. blueblood86 - May 8, 2012 at 6:25 PM

    He’s going to be a bust.
    Bank on it.

    • bcisleman - May 8, 2012 at 6:32 PM

      11th in points 22nd in +/- among NHL defensemen…no, not so much.

  3. bcisleman - May 8, 2012 at 6:34 PM

    Poile is a pretty bright guy. If anybody can figure out how to keep Weber and Suter, he can. Don’t know how the Radulov-Kostitsyn episode affected them. Cannot have helped.

    • biasedhomer - May 8, 2012 at 7:45 PM

      If he is smart, he will trade Suters rights. There’s no way he should be paying his 1st Dline pairing about 15M. Plus they do have high rated defensive prospects.

      • lordfletcher - May 8, 2012 at 11:37 PM

        it’s going to be hard to trade him… Every GM would rather get him for free unless Nashville is marketing Suter for cheap.

        I would say paying big via trade would make more sense for Weber than Suter.

        —— Wild fan dreaming of getting Suter DREAMING!

      • biasedhomer - May 9, 2012 at 10:10 AM

        No it will not be too hard to trade him, there will be a team wiling to offer at east a 3rd+prospects.

        Remember the last big name FA Dman to leave the Preds? Kimmo Timonen, he was the best defenseman available on the market.

        The Flyers traded Nashville’s 1st round pick (acquired from trade Peter Forsberg to the Preds) to Nashville for the rights of unristricted free agents Timonen and Scott Hartnell.

  4. bowens3181 - May 8, 2012 at 6:39 PM

    I would honestly be surprised if Suter wasn’t a Flyer next season.

  5. hines86for6 - May 8, 2012 at 6:51 PM

    How do the wings have abundant cap space with guys like lidstrom, zetterberg, datsyuk, franzen, white and stuart?

    • biasedhomer - May 8, 2012 at 8:03 PM

      isnt Stuart a FA? They would replace him.

  6. ravenscaps48 - May 8, 2012 at 7:01 PM

    Detroit or DC

  7. capsfan19 - May 8, 2012 at 7:07 PM

    Ha ha come on man suter is not going to the caps. I mean shoot lets ship out wideman and green and have suter. Then we can bring up orlov. It’ll never happen tho

    • ravenscaps48 - May 8, 2012 at 8:04 PM

      Wideman and Schultz are guaranteed to not be on the squad next season

  8. pone27 - May 8, 2012 at 7:58 PM

    Lidstroms contract (6.2mil) is finished, he will be a UFA.
    Hudler (2.875) Holmstrom (1.875) Helm (912k-RFA) Abdelkader (787k-RFA) All will be FAs
    On D, Stuart (3.75) and Quincey (3.125) are off the books as well.

    If Detroit was smart, they would do their best to focus on Hudler Helm and Abdelkader first, then attack Suter. You lose those 3 guys, and you lose a TON of depth.

    Being a Hawks fan, I hope everyone leaves :)

    • hines86for6 - May 8, 2012 at 8:54 PM

      Thanks for digging up those numbers.

      If losing suter frees up money to resign Gill, Colin Wilson, and Radulov (if he truly wants to be in Nash or the country for that matter), I’m all for it.

      A Kostitsyn, Gaustad, and Tootoo are the only other UFA and they’re all most likely gone.

      • hines86for6 - May 8, 2012 at 8:56 PM

        Rads and Colin Wilson ( 22 yr old 14 goal scorer while not sniffing the power play) are both RFAs.

  9. thehighcountrybear - May 8, 2012 at 10:22 PM

    I don’t get all the fuss and hot wind? Since when do second rate teams and franchises who’s chief accomplishments are rare playoff starts and brief, boring and remarkably ordinary playoff displays become hot properties to be mined for talent? Me, I’d be looking at teams with a bit of systemic team success under-pinned by real talent! In a team as bland as are Predators, it’s easy to understand where a few dim bulbs might appear brighter than others…move them onto teams with a glittering array of real talent, their dim lights will become all the dimmer!

    • hines86for6 - May 9, 2012 at 2:16 AM

      When their GMs draft well.

      All the Wings players have let go of this season I’m sure. Why can’t you?

  10. caps247 - May 8, 2012 at 10:23 PM

    Suter would look real nice in a Caps uniform. I’d ship out Wideman and Shultz anytime, an opportunity like this doesn’t come every day. The Caps need a better D especially with Hunter’s system, we need D men who can help with the PP and defend better.

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