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Predators pairing up Weber, Jones

Sep 6, 2013, 10:36 AM EDT

SheaWeber

Looks as though Nashville captain Shea Weber will have a new defensive partner to start the season — the club’s most ballyhood draftee in recent years, Seth Jones.

“In your long-term vision you’d like to see that, both of them at some point playing together,” head coach Barry Trotz told The Tennessean. “You’re going to see that in the preseason, and some of the scrimmages.

“I’ll do that on purpose to let them rub shoulders a little bit.”

Both Weber and Jones are right-handed defensemen, but Trotz revealed during rookie camp that Jones had been working on the left side over the summer.

It’ll be interesting to see how long the experiment lasts.

Weber clicked with Roman Josi on the club’s top defensive pairing last season, and Josi is a natural lefty. That said, having Jones get on-ice tutorials from one of the game’s top all-round blueliners could be enough to push Josi onto his own pairing, perhaps with Kevin Klein (who is a righty).

However it shakes out, Jones says he’s excited for the opportunity.

“Over the years, I’ve had the pleasure of watching [Weber],” he explained. “He’s a fantastic player and done a lot of great things here.”

  1. themagicman1223 - Sep 6, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    Not sure Jones is ready for top pairing minutes, Josi did very well last year. Jones is a special talent, I hope he’s going to do well.

  2. awstafki - Sep 6, 2013 at 11:26 AM

    Pairing Jones with Weber makes sense in that Jones will learn from one of the best defensemen in the NHL, but is it really smart to start Jones’ career off facing the opposing teams top line every single night? Probably not.

    I’m sure they are hoping that these two will turn into a Suter-Brodin type of pairing. The only problem is that Brodin was a complete anomaly due to his insane defensive skill set. Jones is the better prospect, but he shouldn’t be expected to pull off top pairing minutes while trying to develop the defensive side of his game. Give him a year and then revisit the idea.

    • goodolejr - Sep 6, 2013 at 11:35 AM

      Shouldn’t Jones be in that class with Brodin since he’s thought of as a “generational talent?” If he does start on the top pairing with Weber and plays poorly at first, someone with his talent should be able to adjust. I don’t see it being an issue at all.

      • ThatGuy - Sep 6, 2013 at 12:03 PM

        Not really, Jones is an elite physical speciman, but his hockey IQ still needs to develop to an elite level.

        Brodin is an average physical speciman, but has two elite qualities. Hockey IQ and skating. He is as smooth of a skater as they come, and with his extermely high hockey sense was always in the exact right position. And that was why he was so succesful playing huge minutes at 19. Add that with playing against men in the SEL and World Championships already, he was ready to play top pairing minutes.

        As Jones get experience and learns how to mentally play the NHL game, his physical talents should allow him to become a top pairing, franchise type defender. But its not going to happen over night. The mental side of the game is very important for young NHL defenders.

  3. jpelle82 - Sep 6, 2013 at 12:01 PM

    i dont know how well he will do this year, i guess we will just have to see. he seems so lanky still (6’4″ 204 lbs is downright skinny), i am anxious to see him a couple years from now with some man weight on him and a couple years of experience under his belt.

  4. icelovinbrotha215 - Sep 6, 2013 at 6:17 PM

    What a pair these 2 can be in a couple years. NSH should be excited.

  5. canucks30 - Sep 7, 2013 at 5:58 AM

    Imagine if they still had Ryan Suter, Dan Hamhuis, Kimmo Timmonen, and Cody Franson to go along with Shea Weber, Seth Jones, Roman Josi, and Kevin Klein.

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