Summer Skate: Nashville Predators

Losing core players will make repeating last season's success difficult for Predators

Updated: September 9, 2011, 2:39 PM ET
By Rob Vollman and Corey Pronman | Hockey Prospectus

Using the VUKOTA projection system of Hockey Prospectus, Insider takes the temperature of key players on every NHL team, continuing with Nashville. For a detailed explanation of Prospectus' proprietary GVT value metric, read more here.

Summer Skate -- Nashville Predators

The Nashville Predators had a great season, finishing second in the tough Central division with 99 points and advancing out of the first round of the playoffs for the first time in franchise history.

Unfortunately they just don't have the funds to keep their key players, let alone attract the ones required to follow up on last year's success.

This offseason the Predators bled players like Steve Sullivan, Marcel Goc, Joel Ward, Cody Franson, Matthew Lombardi, J.P. Dumont and Shane O'Brien.

Nashville's fate is in the hands of star goalie Pekka Rinne and top defensive pairing Shea Weber and Ryan Suter.

Corey Pronman is ESPN's NHL Draft and Prospects analyst. He provides analysis on the top draft-eligible players, prospects drafted by NHL teams and all other relevant prospect information. He lives in New York.