“Shea meant everything to this franchise.”
– Predators GM David Poile
After 11 seasons in Smashville, Shea Weber will get take on the Predators as a visiting player for the first time
Weber played 763 games for the Predators, scoring 443 points and serving as captain for five seasons. He was unquestionably the face of the franchise for the majority of his time in Nashville, and his profound impact on the community will not soon be forgotten. In that respect, last June’s blockbuster is similar for both sides: P.K. Subban and Weber both were top pairing defensemen who donated much of their time and money to their adopted city before being traded in an actual hockey trade.
While Subban will not play for the Predators, he spoke with the media on Tuesday morning and said that he’s “seeing progress every day” on his injury, which he says is a new issue. The two superstar defensemen will face off for the first time on March 2 in Montreal, when a hopefully-healthy Subban makes his return to la belle province.
Weber’s return will be emotional for both players and fans. Pekka Rinne and Ryan Ellis both expressed respect and admiration for Weber and the way he helped welcome younger players into the NHL. Predators season-ticket holder Biff Collins also told Sportsnet’s Eric Engels that Weber’s return is “kind of heartbreaking, but he’s going to get a very warm response tomorrow. You might be surprised at how much we’re going to cheer, it’s going to be awesome.”
Weber is on pace for a career-high in goals and points, as the Canadiens are tops in the Atlantic Division. The Predators are still recovering from the trade, and are two points out of the Western Conference Wildcard.