Nashville GM David Poile has locked up one of his top free agent prizes: veteran center Mike Ribeiro.
According to TSN’s Aaron Ward, Nashville has re-signed Ribeiro to a two-year deal worth $7 million.
The re-signing comes following a big year for Ribeiro in which he signed a one-year, $1.05 million deal with the Predators to prove he still had something left in the tank.
During last year’s off-season, the Arizona Coyotes had bought out Ribeiro just one season into a four-year deal. Following the buyout, Nashville inked Ribeiro to a one-year deal that was low-risk, high reward: if Ribeiro failed, it wasn’t a deal that broke the bank for the Predators and it wouldn’t damage their salary cap; if he played well, they had found a steal.
At 35, not only did Ribeiro show he could still play, he excelled and was a big reason for Nashville’s success, spending much of the season as the Predators top-line center. With the Predators, Ribeiro registered 15 goals and 62 points, the best point total of his career in the past three seasons. During the regular season, Ribeiro skated nearly 18:45 per game.
In six playoff games, Ribeiro also added one goal and five points while averaging more than 23 minutes per game.
Now, with him under contract, the Predators have the ability to put the line of Ribeiro, James Neal and Filip Forsberg back together. As a trio, the line was one of the most effective in the NHL and a big part of Nashville's resurgence.