Preds hope for boost with Gaustad’s return
The Nashville Predators are hoping that Paul Gaustad will help the team’s defensively and on the penalty kill after missing three games with an upper-body injury, the Tennessean reports.
“He’s a big body,” Predators coach Barry Trotz said. “He’s a very detailed guy and at 6-foot-5, he’s a guy who has some reach and a guy who has some strength.”
If any team appreciates what the large 30-year-old brings to the ice, it’s the Predators. They sent a first-round pick to Buffalo in exchange for Gaustad and a fourth-rounder during the 2012 trade deadline.
The center’s faceoff efficiency counts as one of his strong suits - he’s not a guy who piles up points - but that size definitely stands out to Trotz. He explained how having big players like Gaustad, Hal Gill and Pekka Rinne can improve a PK.
“All of a sudden you don’t see a lot of lanes,” Trotz said.
They’ll need all the help they can get shutting down a powerful Anaheim Ducks lineup on Saturday night, too.