In what I'm guessing is the first (and last) time I'll need to link to People Magazine on this site, we have word this morning that country music star Carrie Underwood has publicly announced her engagement to Ottawa Senators center Mike Fisher.
So here's the question for Predators fans; might she be able to lure him to Nashville at some point in the future? We've seen hockey wives exert influence in the past over where their husbands play (as Edmonton Oilers fans know all too well with Chris Pronger and Wayne Gretzky), so what are the chances that Mike Fisher might someday don a Predators jersey?
First off, Fisher is a terrific hockey player; not necessarily a 1st-line center, but as a 3-time 20 goal scorer, well on his way to a 4th with 15 goals already, there's little doubt that he'd make a fine addition in Nashville. He does get dinged up quite a bit, but that comes with the up-tempo, energetic game he plays. As a center, he could fit in between Dumont & Hornqvist in the short term, and might make a long-term replacement once Jason Arnott hangs up the skates, whenever that happens.
Of course, that talent comes at a price. He makes $4 million during this and the next two seasons, along with $3 million in 2012-13. That level of pay, while significant, isn't out of line with the core group that the Predators rely upon. Right now there are a host of players making between $3 million and $5.25 million. Since Jason Arnott, J.P. Dumont, David Legwand and Martin Erat are all covered by no-trade clauses in their contracts, you can bet that none of those players would be likely to head the other way in a theoretical deal.
Granted, this isn't to say that anything will (or even should) happen this season on this front; but it's an idea to keep in mind each summer, as that's when it's most reasonable for teams to make deals for players under long-term contracts like his.
And if Ms. Underwood ends up being viewed as a villain in Ottawa for swiping away one of their top young stars - well, that's just part of being a good Preds fan, Carrie. You do what it takes to help the team!
Lastly, I'll leave you with an interview from last month in which Carrie talks about Mike:
Do you think Mike Fisher might end up playing for the Nashville Predators once he's married to Carrie Underwood?
No (359 votes)
Yes (166 votes)
525 total votes