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Predators defenceman Tyson Barrie again to face outdated pals on Oilers after final yr's commerce

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Whereas all people wished to speak to Mattias Ekholm about his “closure” as he will get able to play in opposition to his long-time Predators’ group in Nashville Tuesday, the primary time for the reason that Feb. 28 commerce, how about Tyson Barrie?

The previous Oilers defenceman had a number of outdated teammates — Connor McDavid, Zach Hyman, Darnell Nurse, Evan Bouchard, Kyle Turris and Mike Smith — at his July marriage ceremony to Emma in Victoria, B.C., this previous July, which tells you about his affinity for his Oiler friends.

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He’ll even be taking part in his first sport in opposition to his former membership after nearly three seasons right here.

“Wanting ahead to it? Hmm … it’s at all times fascinating once you’re taking part in 97 (McDavid) and 29 (Leon Drasaitl). It’ll be a enjoyable one. I’ve performed just a few of those video games previously, in opposition to Colorado (Nate MacKinnon) and Toronto (Mitch Marner). At all times one thing a bit additional particular,” stated Barrie, who suited up for190 Oilers regular-season video games (132 factors) and one other 20 playoff video games whereas working the NHL’s all-time-best energy play.

Barrie was sacrificed on the commerce deadline to get a distinct kind of defender in Ekholm.

The Oilers needed to dump cash so as to add Ekholm’s $6.25 million (he has three years left on his deal), in order that they moved Barrie and his $4.5 million together with 2022 first-round decide Reid Schaefer and a 2023 first-rounder (the Preds took Saskatoon Blades defenceman Tanner Molendyk, who’s again within the WHL). Schaefer is taking part in on Predators’ Milwaukee AHL farm group.

Barrie has been traded earlier than, from Colorado to Toronto in 2019, with Alexander Kerfoot for Nazem Kadri and different items. However, that was extra anticipated as a result of the Avs had a surplus of D-men.

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The Oilers transfer caught him off-guard.

“Positively stunned me. Mike Smith despatched me a display screen shot that stated we obtained Ekholm and possibly he can be my D associate or one thing,” Barrie stated.

“I stated, ‘who did we quit?’ Subsequent factor I knew my telephone was ringing.”

Tyson Barrie
The Edmonton Oilers’ Zach Hyman (18), Ryan Murray (28) and Tyson Barrie (22) have a good time a purpose in opposition to the New York Islanders throughout first interval NHL motion at Rogers Place, in Edmonton Thursday Jan. 5, 2023. Picture by David Bloom /Postmedia

“I had signed in Edmonton (as a free agent for 3 years) with the intention I might play out my contract and win there, however it’s a enterprise and issues come at you rapidly. They made the choice to try to make their group higher and had me going the opposite method.

“I made quite a lot of good pals and had quite a lot of good reminiscences in Edmonton and I’ll at all times look again fondly at that. However that’s the attractive a part of our sport. You make pals and transfer on. Simply since you’re in a distinct metropolis, it doesn’t imply you’re not protecting in contact. I’m grateful for the time in Edmonton”

The July marriage ceremony was a terrific catch-up, a weekend blast.

“You simply decide up the place you left off, that’s the hockey tradition. Bought to mingle with quite a lot of my outdated teammates,” stated Barrie, who additionally had Sidney Crosby on the marriage ceremony.

Barrie has moved so much in his NHL time, 4 groups now. However, he’s transportable.

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“It’s an adjustment in Nashville, it’s a distinct a part of the world, totally different tradition, totally different group. However they’ve welcomed us with open arms. Nashville’s a fantastic place to land,” stated Barrie, who was used to all of the nation bars (Tootsie’s and others) alongside the principle Broadway drag, outdoors Bridgestone Enviornment, as a visiting participant.

Now, it’s the place he lives.

“I’m not an enormous country-and-western man anyway. I’m looking for my scene,” he stated with amusing. “It may be a bit overwhelming, plenty of individuals. We (Predators) attempt to keep off it. It’s a little bit of a mini-Vegas. You discover your spots right here, however most are off the strip.”

Barrie has been taking part in on the purpose on the Predators’ PP, paired with former Norris trophy winner and captain Roman Josi in a two-pronged blueline assault, whereas additionally on his personal on the second PP.

“Our energy play hasn’t clicked to start out the season so we’re making an attempt various things. We’re making an attempt totally different items,” Barrie stated. “Since I’ve been within the league (771 video games), groups have just about run one D man on the facility play, however the previous two video games with me and Josi, I feel we’re about 0-for-12. Simply not moving into. However when you could have a man like Roman Josi, he’s a little bit of a rover (D-man/ahead). He might be wherever (on the facility play).

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“Josi is a such a candy man, nice chief. He jogs my memory of among the nice guys I’ve performed with (elsewhere) the place they attempt to be one of the best variations of themselves every single day. He’s a particular expertise,” he added.

Barrie was grateful for his time on the Oilers PP with McDavid, Draisaitl, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and both Zach Hyman or Evander Kane as net-front. He match with them seamlessly.

“Each time the official’s (referee) arm went up, you have been over the boards,” Barrie stated.

“At all times felt such as you had an opportunity to attain one (a sport) they usually have been usually some fairly good ones. I realized so much from the blokes there, their dedication to being one of the best. The behind-the-scenes work (with PP coach Glen Gulutzan), too. The video. They have been one of the best within the league for a motive.”

So, no penalties on Tuesday?

“I feel that’s circled on each group within the league’s (white) board. We’ll attempt to keep out of the field and they need to too. We’re due (energy play),” Barrie stated.

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The Predators, who nearly made the playoffs final spring after the Ekholm/Barrie commerce are 1-2 this season with a Juuse Saros shutout over Seattle and two shut losses to Tampa and Boston. They moved on from veterans Matt Duchene and Ryan Johansen however, as Barrie says “it’s not a rebuild, extra like a retool.”

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Barrie’s associate 5-on-5 has been Jeremy Lauzon.

“Large No. 3, heavy on the physique,” Barrie stated.

Barrie’s contract is up after this season and he could possibly be one other trade-deadline pickup for a contender in March if the Predators are out of the playoff image. Is he nervous about getting dealt once more?

“That’s at all times a priority. I’ve had some good chats with Trotzie (new Predators GM Barry Trotz, who changed the retired David Poile),” he stated. “We’ll see how it’s for each side (new contract). There’s been a bit chat, however nothing loopy. If I’ve realized something over my profession, it’s that groups do what’s greatest for them (trades), and I’ll do what’s greatest for me and my household (two-year-old boy Leo and spouse Emma).”

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