Unless the Nashville Predators can turn things around quickly, they’ll have to approach the trade deadline as sellers for the first time in a while. Which players should they trade?
The Nashville Predators came into the 2019-20 season as hopeful Stanley Cup contenders. After signing Matt Duchene in the offseason, many projected them to be the favorites to win the Central Division. However, after a strong start in October, things have gone south quickly for the Predators.
Since the start of November, the Predators have a .471% point percentage, which is the seventh-lowest mark in the NHL. After a 5-2 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs, Nashville sits six points out of the second wild-card spot in the Western Conference. Though they have games in hand, it means nothing if they keep playing the way they’ve been playing lately, as they have a 4-5-1 record over their last 10 games.
According to NHL.com, things aren’t going to be easy for the Predators. They have the third-toughest remaining schedule. Moreover, the Predators will have just 17 of their last 33 games at home. That’s not promising.
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In order to get to 97 points (which should be enough to barely squeeze into the playoffs), the Predators are going to have to pick up 46 points in their last 33 games. With just 66 points left for them to get, that means they’ll have to put up a point percentage of .696% point percentage. The Predators will have to be at worst a top-five team in the NHL from here on out to have a realistic shot of making the playoffs.
All of this adds up to a team that everyone expected to be buyers at this point in the season becoming sellers. The Predators haven’t been sellers at the trade deadline since 2014, so this is largely unfamiliar territory for them.
If and when the Predators decide to start listening to offers for their players, three players stand out. Each of them are unrestricted free agents after this season, so trading them makes all of the sense in the world. Let’s take a look at who the Predators should trade at the deadline.