Are the Predators gearing up to take a big-time run at trading for Mitch Marner?

Photo credit:John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports
Nick Alberga
30 days ago
If the Nashville Predators are trying to be subtle about their interest in dealing for Mitch Marner, they’re not doing a very good job of it.
Adding fuel to the building fire, they dealt veteran rearguard Ryan McDonagh back to the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday afternoon.
There was no salary retention in the deal. For what it’s worth, according to multiple reports, the 34-year-old quietly requested a trade in his exit meeting with the Predators a few weeks ago. They obliged. McDonagh’s very well respected around the league.
And so, suddenly, Nashville has a tick over $26 million in cap space entering what is expected to be a crazy and chaotic offseason league wide. Naturally, just like every other team, they have some in-house business to tend to, but there’s question they have the cap space to make a deal of sizable magnitude.
On paper, from the onset, Nashville has made a lot of sense as a potential landing spot for Marner —provided he’s open to a change of scenery this summer. On top of that, with Tennessee being one of a handful states in the U.S. that doesn’t levy a state income tax, it’s the perfect type of destination for the 27-year-old to get the best bang for his buck on his next contract. Money’s always been important for the Marner camp, and without question, he can strike gold in Nashville. It’s a very good match.
Furthermore, Predators general manager Barry Trotz was asked straight-up about the potential of trading for the winger on Tuesday during his post-McDonagh trade scrum. To the surprise of absolutely no one, the future Hall-of-Famer was very mum on the topic. “They haven’t talked to us,” disclosed Trotz. “I read the same stuff as you, that’s just rumours.”
Needless to say, it would be wise to take anything a league executive says this time of year with a grain of salt. If a player of Marner’s ilk were to be made available, there’s no question that the line for his services would be the length of the Gardiner Expressway.
Memo to Nashville: We see you.

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