Predators Becoming Less Likely To Deal Ryan Suter?

By Randy Holt

The trade deadline is getting closer and closer by the day, meaning trade rumors are picking up.

Since the season began, one of the more intriguing names out on the market has been Nashville’s star defenseman Ryan Suter. Suter, next to Shea Weber makes up, arguably, the best defensive pairing in the National Hockey League.

Suter has turned in another impressive year, with 30 points on the season so far. That’s a total that could lead to him touching his career high, of 45, to go along with his plus-12 for the year.

There’s no question that Suter is among the NHL’s best defensive talents. Put him next to Weber and good luck finding a forward that wants to try and skate past that duo. Yet, his name has been one to come up throughout the season in trade rumors.

The Predators have never been a team known to spend much. They signed Pekka Rinne to a new contract at the very beginning of the season, but still have to deal with the impending free agent status of both Weber and Suter. It’s been considered likely that the Preds are only going to be able to sign one this offseason, with that one becoming Weber.

That’s left Suter’s name floating out on the rumor mill, especially to a team like the Philadelphia Flyers, who are very much in the market for a defenseman. But with Nashville turning it on of late, do they really plan to deal Ryan Suter?

The Preds currently sit in fifth in the Western Conference and are rising. They’ve won seven of their last 10, with Suter obviously being a big part of that. Even though he’s an unrestricted free agent at the end of this season, is dealing him really the right move?

They might not have the offensive chops to take home a Stanley Cup, but the Preds could definitely be considered something of a contender in the Western Conference, if their recent run is any indication. But that’s a lineup with Suter in it. Dealing him could end up hurting them in the race for the playoffs.

It’s becoming more and more likely that the Predators are going to hang on to Ryan Suter through the trade deadline. Though Suter has said he won’t sign an extension before the deadline, the two could work out a deal in the summer. Or they could trade his rights elsewhere before the signing period starts up.

Either way, I think it’s more likely than not that Ryan Suter is in a Preds sweater when playoff time rolls around.

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