Preds owners wanted to match Weber's offer from get-go; GM thinks he didn't want to go

By Brian Stubits | CBSSports.com

Shea Weber is slated to be with the Nashville Predators for the next 14 seasons after the Preds matched the offer sheet Weber signed with the Flyers. That's obviously great news for the Predators and GM David Poile believes it's great news for Weber, too.

Speaking at a press conference outside Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday alongside CEO Jeff Cogen and chairman Tom Cigarran, Poile explained it was pretty clear that Weber was comfortable with that.

"Shea knew, when he signed the offer sheet, that he was going to play the next 14 years in Philly or Nashville,” Poile explained. "You've never heard Weber say anything negative about Nashville. He's a top player, he wants to win."

Maybe Weber didn't say it but one of his agents, Jarrett Bousquet, certainly wasn't complimentary of the Predators. He said that Weber signed the offer sheet with Philly because he wanted to play in Philly and that Weber wasn't interested in another rebuilding effort.

Poile admitted that he heard those comments and said he didn't like them. He did concede that maybe you could bring up rebuilding if the Preds didn't match the offer to Weber, but they did.

"Rebuilding? I'm not thinking about that. I didn't like that word/phrase. That's not in our gameplay, the word 'rebuild.'"

As Poile said, rebuilding isn't really a word that fits their description now, not that the Predators' ownership group deliberated and came to one conclusion.

"The answer was always, 'Yes. Match.'" Cogen said.

Cigarran expanded on that, talking about the financial considerations they had to take into account.

"It wasn't a question of if we couldn't come up with the money over the first four years'" Cigarran said, explaining there was a number that would have been too high for them to pay, but this wasn't it. "We concluded that we can definitely be the team we want to be and pay Shea Weber's contract.

"We did what it took to keep him a Predator."

H/t to The Predatorial for the quotes

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