Matt Duchene to the Nashville Predators

The Nashville Predators made a gutsy trade at the 2019 National Hockey League draft. In that trade, they ended up trading all-star defenseman P.K. Subban to the New Jersey Devils. In exchange for PK, they received young prospect Jeremy Davies, and defenseman Steven Santini. Not just that, but they also received a 2019 second round pick, and a 2020 second round pick. Then on July first the Nashville Predators officially announced the signing of all-star center Matt Duchene.

Nashville’s first taste of Duchene

Matt Duchene in the 2016 NHL all-star game held in Nashville

Nashville Predator fans had seen Duchene play for the Colorado Avalanche, but they didn’t know his love for country music and the city of Nashville. In 2015, Nashville hosted the 2016 NHL All-Star game where Predator fans fell in love with Duchene. In the skills competition, Duchene wore a cowboy hat while performing in the events. Then, later during the all-star break, he had the chance to go up on stage and perform with country music singer Lee Brice. These few events, along with performances with the Avalanche, started the long pursuit of Duchene by Predators fans.

A long few years for Predator fans

Craig Smith scores against Buffalo

Early into the 2017 NHL season, a three-way trade was made. The Colorado Avalanche traded Duchene to the Ottawa Senators. The Avalanche received  Andrew Hammond, the Senators first-round pick in the 2018 NHL Draft, and the Senators third-round pick in the 2019 NHL Draft, as well as forward Shane Bowers. Colorado also received from Nashville, a second-round pick in 2018, 19-year-old defenseman Samuel Girard, and forward Vladislav Kamenev. Nashville received star center Kyle Turris. This marked the first delay in Duchene’s trip to Nashville. Duchene then played a year and a half with the Sens before being traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets, after being linked with the Predators yet again.

Matt Duchene is finally a Nashville Predator

After a long few years Matt Duchene is now a Nashville Predator. I fully expect him to start on the second line with Mikael Granlund and Turris on each of their wings, respectively. Craig Smith could also be interchanged with Turris to provide a better defensive and scoring winger. Duchene brings a great scoring threat and even better playmaking ability, which will help improve the Predators power-play. Duchene will also help Nashville to be able to make a deep run into the Playoffs, and will hopefully help them win the cup.

Image Credits: Getty Images

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