Preds make it official: sign Spaling to one-year deal

Photo Credit: Paul Nicholson

The Nashville Predators have finally made it official. Restricted free agent Nick Spaling has signed a one-year deal worth $1.5 million in order to avoid arbitration. His arbitration date was set for today.

Spaling, a four-season NHL vet, is an important piece to Nashville’s penalty kill unit. And, with the departure of Hal Gill, they’re going to need all the help they can get on the penalty kill. The question, however, is where does he fit in?

The Predators have 15 NHL-caliber forwards on the roster right now and can only dress 12 each night. Before the season starts, Nashville will have to make some moves in order to get under the NHL roster limit of 23.

The official press release is below.

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Nashville, Tenn. (July 25, 2013) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that the club has signed forward Nick Spaling to a one-year, $1.5 million contract.

Spaling, 24 (9/19/88), tied for fourth on the team in goals (9) in 47 games in 2012-13, just one shy of his career high set in 77 games during the 2011-12 season. He also set personal bests in average ice time (15:51) and shooting percentage (15.7) a season ago. The 6-1, 198-pound native of Drayton, Ont., has appeared in 226 games for the Predators since the 2009-10 season, amassing 52 points (27g-25a). The Predators are 20-4-1 when he scores a goal and 34-9-3 when he records a point all time.

Nashville’s third choice, 58th overall (second round), in the 2007 Entry Draft has played in the third-most games from his draft class among non first-rounders. Prior to turning pro in 2008-09, Spaling helped the Kitchener Rangers win the 2008 OHL Championship and reach the Memorial Cup Finals, tying for second in assists (6) and for third in points (8) at the 2008 Memorial Cup, while ranking  third in 2008 OHL playoffs in goals (14) and fifth in points (30).