President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced Wednesday that the club has signed forward Marcel Goc
to a one-year contract worth $775,000.
Goc, 26, has already set a career high with 10 goals in 49 games this season, and with 19 points, he's just three points shy of the personal-best in points he attained during 2005-06, his rookie season. The 6-1, 202-pound center is tops on the Predators in faceoff winning percentage (51.5 percent) while playing 14:08 per game. He has has 16 points (8 goals, 8 assists) in his last 25 games.
"When we signed Marcel this summer our hopes were he could be a replacement for a Scott Nichol
or Vern Fiddler -- play third or fourth line and kill penalties. I think it's safe to say he's well-exceeded our expectations," Poile said. "He's played higher in the lineup than we had anticipated. He has produced more offensively than he has ever done before, and he's been one of our top penalty-killers and one of our most consistent guys on faceoffs."
Named to his third straight German Olympic Team on Dec. 30, Goc is the highest German ever selected in the NHL Draft (No. 20 in 2001 by San Jose). He has played 314 career games with Nashville and San Jose since 2005-06, scoring 29 goals and adding 44 assists for 73 points with and 84 penalty minutes. Goc has 3 goals and 5 assists for 8 points in 37 Stanley Cup Playoff games.
"It's hard to believe he's only 26 years of age, seeing how long he's been around the NHL," Poile said. "Everybody starts developing or reaching their full potential at different ages, and we just got Marcel at the right time. It seems like it's been a good fit for Marcel and it's been a good fit for us.
"I think it's important to remember that he was a first-round pick. Your expectations as a first-round pick are pretty high. Coming over from Europe, things early on were probably a little different for him. But I think he's feeling good about himself, and I see his star rising."