The Nashville Predators have signed another depth forward to an extension, inking Tommy Novak to a new one-year deal for next season. The contract comes with a salary of $800K, a nice reward for a player who has been in the organization for several years.
Novak, 25, was a third-round pick of the Predators back in 2015, but didn’t make his NHL debut until last season. This year, after lighting up the minor leagues (again), he was given a chance to play meaningful minutes and has scored four goals and 11 points in 20 games.
A contract like this doesn’t guarantee his spot in the lineup moving forward, but does serve as a bit of financial security for the depth forward. This will be his first one-way deal, and keeps him away from Group VI unrestricted free agency, which he would have qualified for this summer.
The Predators have now inked two depth pieces this week, after signing Cole Smith on Monday. These bargain-basement contracts will help them spend elsewhere on the roster, though they likely won’t have a huge impact on the scoreboard.
Given that he will be a UFA when this contract does expire, Novak will certainly be motivated to put up even bigger offensive numbers. Whether he’s given that opportunity remains to be seen.
Between Novak and Smith, the fans won’t even remember who Eeli Tolvanen was. :/
Tolvanen is loving the Pacific Northwest, Perhaps Poile dropped the ball on this one.