BREAKING: NHL & NHLPA come to Agreement with IIHF & Olympics


It’s official: NHL players will be allowed to participate in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, thanks to an agreement between the NHL & NHLPA and the IIHF & Olympic committee. The NHL will have an Olympic break between February 9th – 25th, with Team USA opening against Team Slovakia on Thursday, February 13th at 6:30AM. Team Canada will face off with Team Norway the same day at 11AM. This is the fifth consecutive Olympics the NHL has participated in since 1998 – so what’s the big deal on their agreement?

Well, the fact that it took them a bit longer than it should have and now they can finally release the 2013-14 regular season schedule! We will have it up for you once it’s available!

Nick Spaling files for Salary Arbitration

Image Source: Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

Per his agent and the NHLPA’s website, Nick Spaling has filed for salary arbitration.
What does this mean?
NHL salary arbitration is a tool available to settle contract disputes. The player & team each propose a salary for the coming season, and argue their cases at a hearing if there is a dispute. The arbitrator, a neutral third party, then sets the player’s salary. A decision must be made within 48 hours of the hearing and when the decision is announced, the team has the right to decline, or “walk away” from the award. If the team exercises this right, the player can declare himself an unrestricted free agent.
Hearings will be held from July 22 to August 6th.

Uh oh. Apparently, Nick Spaling was not happy with his proposed salary. Will this be the last of Nick Spaling with the Preds?

Schedule Excitement & a Marty Party

Just a few more days… Can you handle the anticipation?

Last night was a big one for NHL fans – the much anticipated schedule was released, thus sending a bunch of us into a calendar blowout, cramming the newly slated games into our already busy schedules. But we must say, what a relief! With the schedule officially released, it’s starting to feel as if the season really is about to start (ahem, finally).

We promptly posted the schedule in our schedule section last night, in case you missed it. It’s there in its entirety for your viewing pleasure (though we believe you have already run your feasting eyes across it elsewhere).

What games have you circled (and circled, and circled) on your calendar? The Predators will host the first two games at home against the Columbus Blue Jackets on January 19th, followed by the St. Louis Blues on January 21st. Then it’s off on a seven-game road trip across the Western Conference. Some key games most fans and analysts are interested in are the games against both the Detroit Red Wings and the Minnesota Wild. Any Preds fan will tell you why; Jordin Tootoo and Ryan Suter. The Predators will face Suter and the Wild on January 22nd in Minnesota, but Preds fans will have their shot at the runaway on March 9th. Jordin Tootoo will be visiting Smashville on February 19th, though I don’t believe many fans will be blowing their Tootoo whistles. The Predators will then travel to the Motor City on April 25th. On a personal note, one particular Lady Pred is excited about April 2nd, when the Colorado Avalanche come marching into Music City (we miss you, Shane O’Brien! ahem).

To be officially official, the actual Lockout ended last night after it was confirmed that the Memorandum of Understanding was completed. Who cares… NHL HOCKEY IS BACK NOW!

NHL training camps opened today, but the Predators stuck to their normal “preseason” routine of training off-ice to start out. However, tomorrow begins the on-ice practice at Centennial Sportsplex which, good news for fans, is open to the public. The practice will run Monday through Friday, 10AM to 11:30AM. Though we’ll be at work, we’ll try to slip in an early lunch break to come soak in the fact NHL hockey is truly back in Nashville.

Martin Erat was named the new Alternate Captain today, stepping up into Ryan Suter’s once shoes. Shea Weber is, of course, still Captain, along with Mike Fisher as the other Alternate. Pekka Rinne has also been given a leadership role this season, which is not surprising by any means. And yes, David Legwand is still the alternate Alternate Captain.

Tickets for the first two home games are on sale now via TicketMaster, while the rest of the regular season will go on sale Friday, January 18th at 10AM.

Have you gotten your tickets for Saturday night? We hope to see you there!

CBA Voting, GM Firing & Red Line Designs


The wait is OVER!! … Umm.. Schedule, please?

What a good afternoon it was for the fans of the National Hockey League as the NHL Board of Governors approved the new CBA deal with a vote of 30 to 0, thus allowing the fact that the season really is set to start within the next week.

However, the players must also ratify the the new deal, which isn’t set to happen until Friday. The voting will be electronically over a two-day process, with the deal needing the majority of the vote in support of the CBA (there are give-or-take about 740 union members…). If all goes to plan (fingers crossed), training camps should begin on Saturday, with a 48-game season beginning January 19th.

Rumor has it that the Predators could possibly be opening the season at home against the Columbus Blue Jackets on the 19th. We’ve run across this snippet a few times, but we aren’t promising anything. We’ll know as soon as you know… When the schedule’s released.


In bizarre news, Toronto Maple Leafs General Manager Brian Burke was fired today, but kept on as a corporate advisor, with no authority over Hockey Operations. The details over his step down is not fully known at this time, but due to the Leafs disappointing performance under his leadership could have played a deciding factor. Dave Norris will take on both GM and VP responsibilities from this point forward.


New for 2013, a few leagues have found their creative, inner designer bug and have set forth to make a few tweaks on the ice. Enter, the new center ice red line designs, each unique for its prospective team. Here are a few teams that have dipped into their creative side:


Calagary Flames


Winnipeg Jets


Dallas Stars


St. Louis Blues


Nashville Predators

Well how about that! Even the Predators have tried out the new center line. Now, you might be saying to yourself, “Wait a minute – I saw this last season!” Test run, folks; test run. The debut was set for the beginning of this season, but it looks like January was the right time (thanks, lockout). The other teams trying out the new look include the Tampa Bay Lightning, the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Anaheim Ducks, the Columbus Blue Jackets, the Carolina Hurricanes, the L.A. Kings, the Montreal Canadiens, the Phoenix Coyotes, and the Ottawa Senators.

We are so close to a season, we can almost taste it! We will keep you updated as news is released regarding CBA voting, scheduling, and everything in between. Follow us at @lady_preds on Twitter and our Facebook page.

The Lockout is Over


After 113 days… it’s time.


At 4:40 this morning, the two sides came to an agreement concerning the CBA Talks, making a formal statement to the media at around 6AM. Yea, we’re a few hours behind, but we don’t see 6AM on the weekends.

“Don Fehr and I are here to tell you that we have reached an agreement on the framework of a new Collective Bargaining Agreement, the details of which need to be put to paper,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said. “We have to dot a lot of I’s and cross a lot of T’s. There is still a lot of work to be done, but the basic framework has been agreed upon. We have to go through a ratification process and the Board of Governors has to approve it from the League side and, obviously, the players have to approve it as well. We are not in a position to give you information right now about schedule, when we are starting. It’s early in the morning and we have been at this all day and all night, obviously. But, we will be back to you very shortly, hopefully, later today with more information in that regard.”

The schedule has yet to be announced, but we will update you once it is posted. We do know, however, that a 50-game schedule will begin on January 15th, and a 48-game schedule will start January 19th.

After 113 days, it feels like Christmas morning all over again. We are just relieved both the NHL and NHLPA have come to an agreement before the season was completely lost (though it shouldn’t have gotten to this point).

CBA Talks Continue: Progress, Methinks


Rest In Peace, Winter Classic.

After a Christmas hiatus, we are back and… no good news or bad news really to report. A lot has happened, though and we will cover it all in one sugarcoated nutshell.

Let’s start with what we know:

  • Commissioner Gary Bettman has set a date for hockey doomsday: January 11th. If both the NHL and NHLPA have not come to an agreement in CBA talks by that date, the 2012– err, 2013 season will be kaput. 
  • The league proposed a new bargain last Thursday, basically consisting of 10-year CBA with a mutual opt-out after eight years, no contractual rollbacks on players’ salaries, 50-50 split of hockey-related revenue, $300 million towards the “Make Whole” provision, max-limits on free agent contracts, and one compliance buyout before the 2013-14 season. Phew – that’s a lot to throw on the table at once.
  • Late Tuesday night, the player’s association presented the league with a counter-proposal, but not too much has leaked to the media regarding what exactly the proposal entails. However, it has been noted that the NHLPA is not happy with the league’s pension offer, which is an entire argument in itself.
  • The NHLPA has a two hour (midnight EST) deadline to decide if they want to go ahead with the Disclaimer of Interest.

    Alrighty, got all that? A sense of false optimism has us biting our nails; we just can’t help ourselves. Progress is being make ever-so-surely, as the two sides are still meeting as we post this. As stated above, the NHLPA still has until the stroke of midnight to go with the DoI, but this is no Cinderella story – if the players’ association passes, they can always vote again in favor of it at a later date.

    We probably missed something, but that is what’s going on in the world of CBA talks at this time. Not good news, not bad news. Progress, methinks.

12/12/12 proves Newsworthy for the Predators


Day 88 of the NHL Lockout produced little insight on the CBA talks, but there was plenty of news on the home front for the Nashville Predators. Okay, so it was both good news and bad news…

Let’s begin with the bad news, shall we?

– Word out of Minsk, Belarus today was a bit disheartening. Though details haven’t made their way to us yet, it looks like Pekka Rinne suffered a groin injury, which has him sidelined for a while. Rinne, as you know, is currently goaltending it up for Dinamo Minsk in the KHL whilst the lockout continues to ruin the NHL as an organization. As we stated, not much more has been released, but if the lockout were to end relatively soon, it looks like Chris Mason would be taking the reins.

While you lick your wounds from that punch in the gut, we will go ahead and let you know that’s the only bad news from today. So let’s bring on the good news:

– Continuing with Pekka Rinne, although he is injured, he is still leading the goaltenders in the KHL’s ballot for their All-Star Game. Although Peks hasn’t exactly had the best luck in the KHL, he is obviously doing something right to get the fans of Dinamo Minsk to vote for him.

– Like Rinne, Sergei Kostitsyn is leading the ballots in the forward category. Yes, we said Sergei Kostitsyn. He’s been on fire since joining up with Avangard Omsk, putting up points in just about all of his games. It’s no wonder he’s been vocal about hoping the lockout continues; he’s the star he’s always wanted to be without ever leaving home (err… sort of). When you’re beating out more notable forwards such as Alexander Ovechkin, Pavel Datsyuk, and Evgeni Malkin, it’s completely understandable why you’d want to stay in the KHL.

– Patric Hörnqvist is leading a ballot of his own; one that consists of frequent flier miles. Horny has joined up with the Swiss club Fribourg-Gotteron during the Spengler Cup. This is Hörnqvist’s third club since the lockout began (if you do not include his minor stint with Tre Kronor) and his second Swiss team. Horny first joined Switzerland’s Martigny Red Ice before changing over to a familiar Swedish team, Djurgardens. Can’t quite get his bearings or does he just miss Nashville and the NHL that much?

So, although not much progress was made during today’s CBA talks (surprise, surprise), it was an eventful news day regarding the Predators. If you are interested in following the KHL All-Star standings – seeing as how our dreams are dashed – check out the site here.

Here’s to hoping Peks heals quickly and holds his lead in the ballots, to Sergei remembering the NHL is better, and to the airline points Horny has accumulated during the lockout.

NHL: Slow Dancing in a Burning Room


With no surprise, the NHL announced today that all games schedule until December 30th have been canceled. It’s hard to believe, after 86 days of lockout, there are fans that still give a hoot.

We’ll be the first to admit; it has been very difficult to continue to show optimism amongst such disappointment. However, we understand our frustrations do not come from the franchises themselves, but from those who run the organization as a whole. If and/or when the season begins, we will return to the Bridgestone Arena to support the sport we have come to love.

We asked on our Facebook page yesterday if Season Ticket Holders have already or would be canceling their season tickets due to the dragging lockout. Most fans said they have already canceled them, unable to take the uncertainty of a possible season and the fact the money could go towards more important needs. Others said the thought has crossed their minds, but the perks that the Predators have offered for hanging on to the tickets have kept them for now. But a few hopefuls have made it known that they will hang on to their season tickets, not swayed by the unpredictable future that the lockout holds.

We can see the reasoning behind all of these fans and their opinions on their season tickets. You wouldn’t waste that much money on season tickets if you did not truly love the game, but that money, being unused, could go to so much more. Items that are needed, not so much wants.

But what about those who depend on the games being played for their livelihoods?

We aren’t talking about the players, the owners, or the hierarchy of the individual franchises. We’re talking about the concession stand workers, the ticket takers, the businesses surrounding the arenas, and so on? How are their lives being affected by this, the 86th day of the NHL Lockout?

Here’s a how they are being affected in a nutshell:


Tough nutshell, isn’t it?
It’s hard to believe, with Tweets like these and other stories floating about, how the NHL and NHLPA can go on with this drama. Surely, they have seen examples like this; someone has to have shown them, right?
It’s almost sickening to read, honestly.

The sad reality with all of this is as the old adage goes: It’s easy to overlook those who are not directly in your daily life. Gary Bettman, Don Fehr, and the like have seen the devastation the lockout has incurred, but similar to the children of third world countries commercials go, it’s easier to sleep at night if you just change the channel. That’s essentially what the NHL and NHLPA are doing.

So, what can be done now to get this show on the road to a season?

Reporters speculate that the NHLPA will extend a ‘Disclaimer of Interest’ within the next week or so, essentially kicking Don Fehr to the curb, not allowing him to speak for the players any longer. This is also the route the NBA took when they, too entered a lockout last year. You can read up on the details of a ‘Disclaimer of Interest’ here.

Wether a DofI happens or not, the NHL is slow dancing in a burning room. Fans are turning their backs and employees are finding other means of work; businesses are cutting hours and closing up shop. Those low on the totem pole hold you in the sky, and the pegs are being chopped off left and right. Again, the NHL is slow dancing in a burning room.

Twitter post courtesy of @PredsNBolts

Players Speak Out against Lockout as Games continue to Cancel

Don Fehr back in September.


As you all know by now, the NHL has announced that it has canceled all games of the 2012-13 season through December 14th, along with the much anticipated All-Star weekend in Columbus.

That brings us up to 423 regular season games canceled thus far, including the Winter Classic between the Detroit Red Wings and the Toronto Maple Leafs. How much money has been lost thus far, too? Here are the status up to

Salary lost: $416,998,959.25
Days Lost in Regular Season: 45
Days since the Lockout: 71

By the time you read this, those numbers will probably have changed, which is absolutely unbelievable. However, with each day that passes, more and more players are becoming vocal about their opinions on the lockout at hand. The NHL and NHLPA will tell you that these players’ outbursts have nothing to do with the “progress” that the two sides have made, but it’s very clear that the players are getting just a frustrated as the fans at this point.

“(Bettman’s) the only guy in pro sports that likes lockouts. It’s ridiculous. The only people who have record revenue and try to cut everything from us are the owners. There needs to be a give-and-take. We’re willing to take less revenue. We’ll do a 50-50 split if they honor our contracts. That seems fair. When you sign a contract, you look the GM in the eye and you expect them to honor your contract.” – Jason Chimera, Washington Capitals

“I personally think (Gary Bettman’s) an idiot. Since he’s come in, he’s done nothing but damaged the game.” – Ian White, Detroit Red Wings

“It’s disappointing that the approach for Gary [Bettman] and the ownership group has been to make these hard dates and final offers and not budging and on and on. There’s no real answer to why except ‘We think we can lock you out and your careers are short and we can shake you down’. Not a good feeling.” – Mike Cammalleri, Calgary Flames

“The two sides are close enough to a deal that missing the bulk of a season is wrong and missing an entire season is not only insane, it is a blatant disregard for the sport, the fans and the culture we have grown over decades — just to satisfy egos, not the needs of either side.” – Ryan Miller, Buffalo Sabres

“But not to be able to play, and for the fans, too – they pay our salaries, anyway. It’s not fair for fans not to have hockey right now.” – Teemu Selanne, Anaheim Ducks

And, let’s not forget our very own Sergei Kostitsyn: “Let’s put it this way – it would be better [for the players] if the lockout continues. Players want a definite answer. If the NHL season is lost – let it be that way. I would then play in Russia for the whole season.”

We could continue to add and add all of the players that have spoken publicly about the lockout, but it would make for one long, drawn-out blog post. It’s clear the players aren’t ready for another lockout, with the last one (in 04-05) still fresh on everyone’s minds.

The real losers here are both the franchise and city of Columbus. With an already struggling hockey market, the All-Star weekend was going to boost both the city’s economy and possibly push some life into the Blue Jackets’ sinking organization. And, to top it off, with Columbus losing their hosting duties at an All-Star game, the chance of Nashville hosting one in the near future will be pushed back as well.

Fans have also expressed their opinions on the lockout, with even a Flyers fan jumping at Commissioner Gary Bettman while leaving a meeting on Wednesday. To be honest, we are surprised it hasn’t happened earlier. So, the question is, how long will fans continue to let both the NHL and NHLPA drag the knife wound through their backs? The optimism is slowly but surely dying off, leaving just a heap of diehards clinging to the dagger. Even we are having a hard time keeping interest, as you can see our posts have been few to none.

How long will the NHL and NHLPA continue to drag the “supposed” season until they finally call it off for good? What good is a season that will start mid-December? We’d be happy for any hockey, championship-worthy or not, but even if the lockout ends tomorrow, the NHL is still the worst-run professional organization in the world. Bettman will still be the commissioner; Fehr will still be the executive director of the NHLPA. Will they just disagree once again and throw the league into another lockout?

Again, the optimism is fading fast and we’re pulling the dagger out at an alarming rate. Time to take notice, NHL.

NHL & NHLPA: Out of Touch with Reality


After yesterday’s massive letdown, we couldn’t help but feel, not only bitter and defeated, but utterly dumbfounded by how out of touch with reality both the NHL and players truly are.

We will never fully understand what both sides are dealing with or what’s going on inside their heads, but from the outside looking in (the fans’ point-of-view), it’s nothing more than a bunch of indecisive businessmen who are controlled by the greed of money.

What happened to the love of the game? The reason they are in the positions they are now?

Downhearted from greed; that’s just one of the mixed emotions NHL fans are experiencing along this rocky, blind route we’d like to call the lockout.

Although it would be nearly impossible to have a fan presence during the meetings other than standing outside with picket signs, it would still be ideal that we have a voice in the situation. We are the ones who give you that money to fight over, right?

By our accusation of the league and players being “out of touch with reality”, we just can’t begin to fathom the idea of being that well off monetary wise and still have the nerve to fight over more.

What is that you need so badly that you are willing to put people (who don’t make nearly half of what you do) out of work while you negotiate splitting their hard-earned money? What can you not afford now that you want? I highly doubt it’s something you need because nothing materialistic is needed with the kind of money you are arguing about.

Maybe it is because we cannot justify blowing our money on five matching Land Rovers and a Lamborghini that matches our favorite shirt or maybe because we’ve never experienced such luxury. What we can tell you, and this goes for all professional sports entities, is that we hope we never get to the point in our lives/career where we forget about the people who got us to where we are.

This can’t be said for all professional athletes or owners, for most athletes have their own charities and are well-versed in the community. However, as a whole, the NHL and NHLPA have made themselves out to look like a bunch a money hungry jerks with nothing better to do.

So this post is more of a rant than factual based, but wether they truly care or not, both sides are not making friends with fans who don’t understand the ability to fight over revenue when they have enough money already to support themselves and about twenty of their closest friends and family. When you struggle to support yourself and family on one or more jobs, it’s pretty darn difficult to see eye-to-eye with both the players and owners.

This is how the NHL will lose more than just a few games. They are enviably going to lose strong and weak fan bases due to their lack of true connection with the fans that provide then with the revenue that they are currently fighting over.

The NHL is not the NFL or NBA. They do not have the fan base, the time and experience like these two organizations do and they never will if they continue to alienate the people who fund them.

It’s time to take off the rose colored glasses and end this before the fans do.