One of the top remaining free agents is now off the board.
After a relatively quiet stretch to start the week, the Nashville Predators re-ignited the NHL's free-agent market with a big splash of their own on Thursday morning, agreeing to terms with forward Nino Niederreiter on a two-year contract worth an average annual value of $4 million.
The details of the deal, which now ties Niederreiter to Nashville through the 2025-26 season, such as its salary structure and the inclusion of any trade protection have yet to be released.
And just like that, the Predators are going for it.
After prying Ryan McDonaugh from the Lightning for practically no cost in early July and then locking up Filip Forsberg to a massive eight-year extension soon after, the Predators are taking another step to fortify their supporting cast for next season with Niederreiter, adding a consistent 20-to-25-goal-scorer to a forward corps that already boasts some intriguing talent.
For a Predators team that lacked offensive depth for nearly its entire existence up to this point, it's a refreshing change of pace, showing just how committed the club is to finally invest in reinforcements up front.
Niederreiter fits that bill perfectly. The Swiss native is the consumate secondary scorer in the modern NHL. producing somewhere in the ballpark of 18-25 goals and 40-55 points whenever he's stayed healthy for a full season while looking equally capable when slotted onto any of his team's top three lines.
In Nashville, Niederreiter will serve that exact same role, lining up alongside the likes of Matt Duchene, Ryan Johansen, or Mikael Granlund in the Predators' top nine.
For the price of a $4 million AAV, that's roughly market value for a player of Niederreiter's ilk, equating to a deal that seems to suit the needs of both sides.