A busy day of signings continues today. The Nashville Predators announced they’ve extended defenseman Jeremy Lauzon to a four-year contract worth $8MM in total, carrying an average annual value of $2MM.
Nashville acquired Lauzon at the Trade Deadline this season from the Seattle Kraken in exchange for a second-round pick (49th overall in the 2022 draft). He was Seattle’s expansion draft selection from the Boston Bruins.
Strictly a bottom-of-the-lineup player, Lauzon tallied two goals and seven points in 66 games combined between Seattle and Nashville this season. While he was in the lineup more consistently in Nashville, he often found himself as a healthy scratch with the Kraken. He averaged 17:40 of ice time per game this season, only a few seconds above his career average.
The veteran of 142 NHL games has some serious career stability now. He is decent defensively at even strength but has struggled on the penalty kill when used there, making more an ideal complementary player to a more high-end, offensively-inclined defenseman. If all goes well, he could end up being a good, cheap solution to partner with Roman Josi, but that’s assuming he maintains his solid defensive play post-trade. He’s known to be inconsistent at times, which raises a few red flags around the four-year term for this deal.
However, Lauzon is still just 25, and will still likely be in his prime at age 29 when the deal expires in 2026. It’s somewhat of a risky deal since the $2MM isn’t fully buriable in the minors, but it could just as well work out just fine. Lauzon was slated to become a restricted free agent with arbitration rights this offseason, and he’ll be an unrestricted free agent at the contract’s end.