Detroit Red Wings Villains: 2015 Nashville Predators


Over the next 30 days, Octopus Thrower profiles every Detroit Red Wings “villain” in the NHL. Today we take a closer look at the Nashville Predators.

*Warning: The author of this blog is a Detroit hockey fan who lives in Nashville. There will be snark.

Team Name:

Nashville Predators



FanSided Foe:


Games Against Them:

Home: December 5th, Away: December 26th

Last Year’s Results:

Detroit won both games against Nashville.

Head Coach:

Peter Laviolette

Watch out for these guys:

  • Filip Forsberg: This talented youngster led the Predators in both points and goals last season and is quickly becoming a rising NHL star. The sky is the limit for this talented young Swede.
  • Shea Weber: One of the most talented and elite defenceman in the NHL. He’s a big blue-liner with a heavy/accurate slap shot. Any team would love to have him on their roster.
  • Mike Riberio: The once (and possibly still) troubled Riberio has had a career resurgence in Nashville. He led the team in assists last season and has found a home playing alongside Filip Forsberg and James Neal.
  • James Neal: The former Pittsburgh Penguin continues to put up solid numbers in Nashville and is always a threat with the puck. He’s also not afraid to get under the skin of opposing players.
  • Roman Josi: This young defenceman put up 15 goals and 40 assists last season playing alongside Shea Weber. The pair is one the NHL best blue-line pairings.
  • Pekka Rinne: The 6’5″ Rinne is an elite NHL goalie. When he’s hot and on his game, Pekka can be brick wall between the pipes for the Preds.

Farmhands worth Noting:

  • Kevin Fiala: Fiala is the top-prospect in the Predators’ organization. He is strong, speedy and talented skater who can be hard to catch when he hits full-stride. He is a flashy dangler who loves to display his slick puck-handling skills.


Pekka Rinne

Sieve or Savior?

Savior. Rinne is one of the top goalies in the entire NHL and can be a tough egg to crack. The fans in Nashville love Pekka Rinne and you don’t have to look hard to find a #35 Rinne jersey in Bridgestone Arena. Despite suffering some lower-body injuries over the last couple seasons Pekka has still been able to maintain a decent level of success.

8 Quick Thoughts about the Predators

4 Things We Respect About You:

  1. Your games and fans are loud.
  2. You basically got Filip Forsberg in exchange for Martin Erat.
  3. You have one of the best and most-talented back-end rosters in the NHL.
  4. You were able to survive and thrive in a non-traditional hockey-market.

4 (Or 8 ) Things We Hate About You:

  1.  Your ridiculously childish and disrespectful crowd chants.
  2. “Fang Fingers” – Please. Stop. This.
  3. When Shea Weber smashed Zetterberg’s head into the glass and you all cheered.
  4.   Your unoriginal tradition of throwing catfish onto the ice.
  5. The fact that you think Carrie Underwood is actually a hockey fan.
  6. Your pre-school tactics in regards to ticket policies that attempt to limit the amount of opposing hockey fans.
  7. Alexander Radulov.
  8. Your “Get The Red Out” campaigns against the Red Wings.

Playoff Threat Level (1-10, 1 being minimal)

I am not afraid to give credit where credit is due, and the Nashville Predators are a very well-rounded hockey team. The Preds possess all of the right tools and talent to compete in a very strong and competitive division/conference. Although the team has never made it past the second-round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, they may be on the verge of doing so. I would respectfully give Nashville a playoff threat rating of 8, my highest score yet.

Final Thoughts

As a die-hard Detroit Red Wings fan/blogger who has lived in Nashville for the last 8 years, I have developed a strong love and hate relationship with the Predators. Mainly that I love to hate them. But hate is a strong word, and despite my snarkiness and disagreement with some of the organization’s policies and practices, I do respect the Nashville Predators.

I have had the opportunity to meet most of the Predators’ roster and they have all been professional and courteous. The team does a lot of good and positive things in the Nashville community while simultaneously stimulating the growth of hockey in a non-traditional market. Preds games are loud, exciting and in your face. It’s a tough arena to lose in for opposing fans.

Nashville will definitely be a force to be reckoned with in the Western Conference during the 2015-2016 NHL season and I look forward to watching them battle it out with the Red Wings in December.

Next: OctoPulse: Who is trending up and down?

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