Nashville Predators general manager David Poile, in addition to his work as a Bud Selig doppelgänger, has done a remarkable job with his hockey club in recent years. In spite of the ‘not a traditional hockey market’ set, and running a hockey team on a budget, the Predators have made the playoffs in six of the last seven seasons. The Predators won their first ever playoff series this past spring in knocking off the Anaheim Ducks, thanks largely in part to players that Poile had drafted during his never-ending tenure in Music City, cost efficient free agent acquisitions such as Joel Ward, shrewd trade acquisitions like Sergei Kostitsyn, and faith in his head coach Barry Trotz.
It’s safe to say that Poile has run a tight ship in Nashville, at least it was safe to say that before rumblings of an investigation into several qualifying offers extended to RFAs came down on Wednesday.
Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos brought back memories of Dale Tallon’s qualifying offer botching of two seasons ago when he tweeted the following: “Big #NHL news as some question #Predators missing qualifying offers on RFA’s O’Reilly, Spaling, Halischuk and Kostitsyn. Stay tuned…”
Dirk Hoag at OnTheForecheck did some investigating, here’s what he turned up:
I have received confirmation from the NHLPA that they are reviewing the matter. At issue is whether the players received the offers by the stipulated deadline.
In order to prevent an RFA from heading to UFA status, qualifying offers would have had to been in place for the aforementioned players by Monday’s 5 PM deadline. The problem that the Chicago Blackhawks and Tallon ran into a couple of years ago revolved around several players recieving their QOs after the stipulated deadline… in the mail… where as they must be sent via fax or delivered by hand.
Josh Cooper at the Tennesean spoke to Poile at the Predators development camp, where the GM reportedly didn’t appear to be sweating the issue:
Currently at development camp, and David Poile does not have the disposition of someone who is stressed by this possible issue.
We shall see how this plays out, but it could prove costly for the Predators if they’re found to be in violation of the CBA here. Plans for retaining Kostitsyn, who finished tied for the team lead in scoring with 50-points last season, may end up proving to be much more expensive than planned.
We’ll keep you posted on any developments in this story…