Keeping Hamhuis Gives Predators Excellent Blueline

Dirk Hoag at SBN's On the Forecheck examines the Predators decision to keep defenseman Dan Hamhuis at the trade deadline. General manager David Poile had to decide whether or not to keep Hamhuis for the playoff push or keep him and risk losing him for nothing, because he is a free agent following this season.

Here's Hoag:

Hamhuis has been an excellent defenseman for Nashville in his six seasons, a prime example of the Predators' reputation for drafting and developing quality blueliners (he was a 1st-round selection in 2001, 12th overall). Assuming he hits the free agent market this summer, he could get something around $4 million per season in his next contract. Hamhuis is probably glad to stay put, however, as his wife just delivered their second child recently.

This sets the Predators up with one of the deepest and most talented set of defensemen in the entire NHL as the playoff chase continues.

GM David Poile had stated that he wanted a player in return for Hamhuis that could help the team this year, and typically teams that pick up top defensemen are looking to make a playoff run of their own, and offer up prospects and draft picks in exchange. Several teams were mentioned as having made offers, but none apparently held enough current hockey value.

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