General Manager David Poile has made his first signing for the offseason, one guy they have apparently been targeting for the past week. The Nashville Predators have signed Viktor Stalberg to a four-year contract worth $12 million. According to the team's press release, Stalberg will make $2.5 million in the first two years of his contract and $3.5 million in the final two years.
Adding Stalberg is a major plus for the organization after losing out on star forwards Daniel Briere, Vincent Lecavalier and Tyler Seguin. Of all those players, Stalberg is definitely the best fit for the organization.
In 47 games last season with the Stanley-Cup winning Chicago Blackhawks team, Stalberg posted 23 points (9g, 14a) and had a +16 rating.
What Stalberg brings to the team is skill, speed, size, and physicality. The 6'3", 209lbs left winger was inserted into the struggling Blackhawks' lineup during their series against the Red Wings for speed. It ended up working because Chicago was able to come back, win the series and eventually win the Cup.
While in the Windy City, 'Hawks head coach Joel Quenneville had him as a third/fourth line guy on most nights. In Nashville, Barry Trotz will likely start him out on the second line and give him a shot to play top line minutes. That is probably the overall reason he decided to sign with the Preds because of playing time.
Take a look at some advanced stats.
Key: GPG-Goals per Game; APG-Assists Per Game; PPG-Points per Game; OPS-Offensive Point Shares; DPS-Defensive Points Shares
OPS and DPS are an estimated amount of points produced thanks to his offensive/defensive contribution.
Here is the full press release below.
Nashville, Tenn. (July 5, 2013) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has signed forward Viktor Stalberg to a four-year, $12 million contract. He will make $2.5 million in 2013-14 and 2014-15 and $3.5 million in 2015-16 and 2016-17.
Stalberg, 27 (1/17/86), posted 23 points (9g-14a) in 47 regular-season games and three assists in 19 playoff games for the Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks in 2012-13, his fourth NHL season. In his last full campaign with Chicago in 2011-12, the 6-3, 210-pound left wing amassed 22 goals and 43 points in 79 games, and was the only NHLer to register more than 25 points and 20 goals, despite zero coming on special teams. Since making his NHL debut with Toronto in 2009, Stalberg has 104 points (52g-52a) in 243 game.
Toronto's fifth choice, 161st overall (sixth round), in the 2006 Entry Draft played three seasons at the University of Vermont from 2006-09, totaling 84 points (41g-43a) in 117 games and being named an NCAA First-Team All-American in 2008-09. A native of Stockholm, Sweden, Stalberg represented Sweden at the 2012 World Championships, recording four points (3g-1a) and a +4 rating in eight games.
Stalberg is on Twitter @VStalberg.
(Photo by Getty Images)