Braden & Fitz had USA Today’s Kevin Allen on ESPN 102.5 The Game this morning to discuss forward Viktor Arvidsson and the new contract he signed with the Nashville Predators, which keeps him in the Music City through 2023.
The seven-year contract will pay Arvidsson $4.25 million a year, a tidy deal considering the 24-year-old’s breakout season last year. Allen praised the Predators for the sensibility of the deal, and thinks that Arvidsson brings something important to Nashville.
“I think the Predators feel pretty comfortable about knowing what kind of player Arvidsson is,” Allen said. “He has a speed element, he’s got some aggressiveness to him. He’s really had an impact on changing this team and giving a little spice up front. ”
As for why Arvidsson accepted the deal, Allen cited the length of the contract and the mutual understanding on both the team’s and player’s ends, but also thinks that the Swedish forward could’ve held out for more money.
“I think Arvidsson liked the long-term security and the big-number total,” Allen said. “Even though if he had played it closer, if he had taken a shorter deal he could’ve maybe ended up being a six-or-seven million dollar player.”
Arvidsson totaled 31 goals this past season (his first year breaking the 30-goal mark) while also adding 30 assists. He added three more goals and 11 assists during the Preds playoff run, but this past regular season is likely what propelled him to this new contract.
Allen also commented that the Predators did well considering that Arvidsson looks like he can replicate his exceptional form this past season.
“He’s got all the attributes of a top scorer,” Allen said. “He has the skating ability, he has the hands, and, more importantly, he has the drive. That’s the one thing that everyone has noted with him is the intensity of his game. He pushes to the limit.”
Another key point of the conversation was how that it shows the Preds are continuing to have a healthy, beneficial relationship with their players. Being able to work out a deal that financially makes sense for both parties is crucial, and Nashville has done just that.
“These situations always come to the player and the management of how his salary is going to fit within the big picture,” Allen said. “I think the player has to be aware of the impact of his contract and I think that’s what the Predators have done.”
For the full interview, listen here: