Long rumored to be on the market, Subban has been a lightning rod for speculation over the past few weeks. While many thought a young crop of prospects might have been the return for the former Norris trophy winner, instead it’s the three-time 20 goal scoring defenseman Weber headed to Montreal.
By all accounts, this is a shocking trade that doesn’t seem to improve Montreal much in the short or long term. While Subban is owed $9MM per season for the next six, Weber is due $7.8MM for the next ten years, after Nashville matched an offer sheet signed by the Philadelphia Flyers in 2012. Weber is also about to turn 31 and has seen a steep decline in both possession numbers and his overall play in recent years.
Subban, almost four years Weber’s junior, heads to a club coming off a deep playoff run and will probably pair up with the responsible and Norris-nominated Roman Josi to form one of the best pairings in the league. Even while in a ’down year’, Subban put up 51 points and is still considered an elite offensive defenseman.
After dealing away Seth Jones for Ryan Johansen last season, Nashville was criticized for giving up their future on the blueline, while Weber was stagnating in the top pairing. This deal fixes that, and gives the Predators the best top-4 in the league: Subban, Josi, Mattias Ekholm and Ryan Ellis.