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Nashville Predators

Predators Make Big Free Agent Splash, Land Stamkos, Marchessault And Skjei



Photo of Steven Stamkos by John Russell/Nashville Predators

The Nashville Predators and general manager Barry Trotz made several splashes to open the new league year in the NHL.

The Predators agreed to terms with three of the top unrestricted free agents available on Monday. Here’s a breakdown of the signings.

Predators, Stamkos Agree To Terms

The Nashville Predators and forward Steven Stamkos agreed to terms on a four-year contract to open free agency Monday, per TSN’s Pierre LeBrun.

The deal is reportedly worth $8 million annually.

Stamkos, 34, has spent his entire 16-year career in Tampa Bay, but he became an unrestricted free agent this offseason.

A former No. 1 overall pick in the 2008 draft, Stamkos has been one of the league’s top centers throughout his career,  tallying seven 40-plus goal seasons including 40 in the 2023-24 campaign.

Stamkos is a seven-time NHL All-Star who averages more than a point-per-game in his career. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion with Tampa. His arrival immediately bolsters Nashville’s top-six. He figures to slot into the Predators’ top line alongside Filip Forsberg and other newcomer Jonathan Marchessault.

Predators, Marchessault Agree To Terms

The Nashville Predators and forward Jonathan Marchessault agreed on a five-year contract Monday, per LeBrun.

The deal is reportedly worth $5.5 million annually.

Marchessault, 33, was an unrestricted free agent after seven seasons with the Vegas Golden Knights.

Marchessault is coming off his best season as a pro, tallying 42 goals and 27 assists while playing in all 82 regular season games. He won the Conn Smythe Trophy for his play in the 2023 postseason, boosting the Golden Knights to the Stanley Cup.

Marchessault figures to slot in to Nashville’s top line alongside Stamkos and Filip Forsberg. That potential line would boast three 40-goal scorers for the first time in franchise history.

Predators, Skjei Agree To Terms

The Nashville Predators continued their busy day of free agency, agreeing to terms with defenseman Brady Skjei, per LeBrun.

The deal is reportedly worth $7 million annually for seven years.

Skjei, 30, was originally a first-round pick by the New York Rangers. He played in New York for five seasons before being traded to Carolina in 2020. Skjei is coming off back-to-back double-digit goal seasons for the first time in his career.

In 609 career games he has tallied 247 points with a plus-21 rating. He notched 12 points on the power play in the 2023-24 season.

Skjei appears to be the replacement for Ryan McDonagh on Nashville’s blue line. He bolsters a group that features Roman Josi, Luke Schenn and Alex Carrier.

The Predators entered the day with over $26 million in available cap space. It is unclear what other moves, if any, the organization will make as it pursues its first Stanley Cup.

Stay tuned to Nashville Hockey Now for more breaking free agency news.