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Friday afternoon notes: Poile's productive penny pinching

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When there's a lack of top-line acquisitions by a team like the Predators, it's only natural to look for hope in the proverbial diamonds in the rough that David Poile and his scouting department continue to find, which have allowed the team to punch above its weight in the NHL for several years now.

So while we'll set aside the question of whether that model can truly move the team forward as opposed to just treading water, spend some time reading your afternoon hockey notes, which build on that theme of finding the next Joel Ward, Anders Lindback, Dan Ellis, Sergei Kostitsyn, etc...

Nashville Predators News

Woe No More? A Powerplay Knight in Shining Armor Rides In… | The Predatorial
Forget all the players coming up from Milwaukee, or a splashy free agent, might new assistant coach Lane Lambert offer some help on the PP? Really good stuff from Kris here.

Driving Play: On The Non-Linearity Of Contracts And The Fallacy Of The Known Quantity
An argument in favor of Jack Hillen being another savvy pickup by David Poile.

Recent history tells you who will lead the Preds in scoring this year… | Section 303
Will another bargain-bin beauty lead the Predators this year?

Smashville 24/7: Preds cannot let ‘big three’ situation become a distraction
You can bet this will be a major focus for the coaching staff and team leadership this fall, but until this situation gets resolved, it will be asked about in every NHL city the Preds visit.

Paul McCann - KC and some Randoms
Paul wonders if Kansas City will ever get an NHL team to fill their new arena, or whether they'll simply continue as a threat that helps teams in existing markets (like the Islanders) get new buildings themselves.

And lastly, here's a new video the team put up on YouTube, featuring lots of celebrities who make it out to Bridgestone Arena for Preds games:

Around the NHL

Hockey Guilty Pleasures: Wil Wheaton, actor and celebrity puckhead - Puck Daddy
Ensign Crusher, hockey fan. 

Who is the King of Hockey reporting on Twitter? | Edmonton Journal
David Staples updates his list of top Twitter followings in the hockey writing world. TSN's Bob McKenzie still rules the roost, and you can find my listing (@Forechecker) a ways down there.

Matthew Lombardi signing could pay off for Maple Leafs -
An encouraging update on the health of Matthew Lombardi, but I haven't seen whether or not he's exercising or skating yet, right? So it's a little early to bemoan the "Lombardi & Franson for the right to pay Brett Lebda not to play here" trade as a total loss.

Report: New Coyotes ownership candidate could want an 'out clause' - The Globe and Mail
Not exactly a shocking development here...

Understanding Advanced Stats, Part Three: NHLE and PDO - Matchsticks and Gasoline
A quick intro to two of the more esoteric advanced stats tools. The one word I'd caution about PDO is that if a team has an elite goaltender (and the jury's still out as to whether Pekka qualifies there), that could result in a sustainable above-average PDO figure.

Weekend Thread: Parent or Sulzer? - Nucks Misconduct
Which former Predators defenseman has the best chance of playing for Vancouver?

Poll & Debate: The 2013-14 Islanders, Two Key Players from Cup Contention? - Lighthouse Hockey
To dream... the impossible dream...

NHL - Highlights of my time at ESPN - ESPN
Hockey writer Gare Joyce moves on from ESPN to Sportsnet (found at Kukla's Korner).

Tyler Bleszinski - Founder of SB Nation - IdeaMensch
Did you know that the founder of SB Nation has a background in hockey journalism?

The Sheet: Dropping the gloves on 'respect' -
Jeff Marek takes a run at the notion that players respected each other more in the old days.

Brophy on NHL salaries: Out of whack -
Mike Brophy starts off on the wrong foot (saying the Preds next season will "scrape their way into the playoffs and then lose in the first round, like they always do") then moves on with a sky-is-falling-under-this-CBA diatribe that ignores the reality of how the NHL player market works. 

B.C. sues police chief, 30 others for beaten former NHLer - TSN
Brutal, brutal stuff here as a former NHL player was beaten severely in a barroom brawl a few years ago, and now the province of B.C. is suing the police chief for botching the investigation. Thanks to @stackiii on Twitter for sharing this.

Is a hockey helmet really "just a helmet"? | Hockey Gear HQ - news, reviews & deals
Players tend to be particular about various pieces of hockey equipment, but when it comes to helmets it seems that in general, puckheads aren't nearly so picky.