Nashville, Tenn. (February 24, 2020) - Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/GM David Poile announced Monday that the team has signed forward Rocco Grimaldi to a two-year, $4 million contract that will see him earn $2 million in both the 2020-21 and 2021-22 seasons.
Grimaldi, 27 (2/8/93), is in the midst of the best statistical season of his NHL career, having already established careers highs in goals (10), assists (20), points (30) and games played (58). His 30 points are the seventh-most on the Predators and the fifth-most among team forwards this season, his second with the franchise. He's posted five multi-point outings in 2019-20, including a career-best three-point (3a) performance on Oct. 29 versus Chicago, as well as two separate three-game point streaks. The 5-foot-6, 180-pound winger is averaging a career-high 12:46 of ice time, and in the 20 games with John Hynes as Nashville head coach, he has seen his average rise to 13:21 to go along with eight points (2g-6a). This season, it took Grimaldi just 25 games to break his previous career high of 13 points (5g-8a), which he set with the Predators during the 2018-19 campaign.
Originally drafted by the Panthers in the second round (33rd overall) of the 2011 NHL Draft, Grimaldi has played in 148 career NHL games with Nashville, Colorado and Florida, recording 53 points (20g-33a). He's competed in seven career Stanley Cup Playoff contests - five of which came with the Predators in 2019 - where he led the team in goals with three in its first-round series against Dallas. He's also a veteran of 247 career AHL games, recording 172 points (80g-92a) across parts of five seasons with Milwaukee, San Antonio and Portland. Prior to enrolling at the University of North Dakota, the Anaheim, Calif., native starred for the U.S. National Team Development Program from 2009-11, where upon graduating from the program sat ninth all-time in points with 136 (60g-76a) and won four gold medals, including the 2013 World Junior Championship in Russia. Grimaldi's three seasons at North Dakota came from 2011-14, where he posted 77 points (31g-46a) in 86 games. He led North Dakota in points with 39 (17g-22a) during his third and final season with the school.