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How they were built: Preds Edition

GM Poile hasn’t been afraid to stick his neck out.

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Nashville Predators: Stanley Cup champions. How’s that sound? A little odd? Well… get used to it because in as little as two weeks time it could become a reality. So, how’d they get to this point? David Poile is the NHL’s longest tenured general manager has been with the Preds since the start. He, more than anyone else, is responsible for their success and will go down in history as the team’s architect and mastermind regardless of their finish.

Throughout the years Poile has done a masterful job of managing the NHL’s salary cap and his team’s self-imposed budget to ice a competitive team each and every year. This year, however, Poile went above and beyond and has compiled one of the deepest rosters in the league. Here’s how the team’s makeup, breaks down:

Drafted:

1. Pekka Rinne
2. Viktor Arvidsson
3. Mattias Ekholm
4. Ryan Ellis
5. Roman Josi
6. Kevin Fiala
7. Colin Wilson
8. Craig Smith
9. Colton Sissons
10. Pontus Aberg
11. Austin Watson
12. Miika Salomaki
13. Juusi Saros

Trade:

1. PK Subban
2. Filip Forsberg
3. Ryan Johansen
4. James Neal
5. Mike Fisher
6. Calle Jarnkrok
7. Vern Fiddler
8. Cody McLeod
9. PA Parenteau

Free Agency

1. Matt Irwin
2. Yannick Weber
3. Freddie Gaudreau
4. Harry Zolnierczyk

Notice anything interesting? Arguably the team’s top three players were all acquired by trade. This is almost unfathomable in today’s NHL where big blockbuster type trades are so few and far between. The popular sentiment that you have to draft and develop your top players seems to be lost on Poile. Sure, he drafts and develops good players, but when he sees a need he’s not afraid to pull the trigger on a trade.