Wednesday: The team has officially announced the contract.
Tuesday: The Nashville Predators, home to arguably the deepest blue line in the NHL, nevertheless value having a wealth of options on defense and have agreed to terms to retain one of their many defensemen. TVA’s Renaud Lavoie reports that the team has re-signed AHL captain Jarred Tinordi to a two-year extension. It is a two-way deal for Tinordi that will pay him the minimum $700K at the NHL level but a comfortable $300K in the AHL.
Tinordi, 27, is coming off a career year in the minor leagues with the Predators’ AHL affiliate, the Milwaukee Admirals. Tinordi paced the Admirals defensemen with 75 games played and 85 penalty minutes and a dependable stay-at-home defender and physical force. The former first-round pick also set a career high offensively with eight goals and 22 points on the year. While many will only ever see Tinordi as a first-round bust – the 22nd overall pick by the Montreal Canadiens in 2010, Tinordi has six points in 53 NHL games – he has slowly but surely grown into a reliable depth defender. At 6’6″ and 230 lbs., Tinordi has always been a dominating presence, but his hockey IQ has caught up with his physical stature and he has become a more composed player on the ice and a leader in the dressing room for Milwaukee. Although he has not appeared at the top level since a brief stint with the Arizona Coyotes three years ago, it’s safe to say he has improved in that time.
With Tinordi signed, Nashville now has their top ten blue line options locked up through next season. Even if he resumes his strong play next season, Tinordi will very likely never see any NHL action. The Predators have ten defensemen on one-way contracts next year: top-four mainstays Roman Josi, P.K. Subban, Ryan Ellis, and Mattias Ekholm, reliable bottom pair Yannick Weber and Matt Irwin, veteran Dan Hamhuis, and rookie Dante Fabbro. Experienced AHLer Matt Donovan, who led all Admirals defenders in scoring last season, also acted as the team’s first man up on the back end and returns for the second of his own two-year, two-way deal. Barring a trade, Tinordi will likely be asked to again lead the Predators’ young prospects in Milwaukee and to be an emergency depth option, as Nashville is simply loaded on defense.