Preds Flashback: Feb. 25, 2004 - Nashville Nets Rinne
/ Nashville Predators
On February 25, 2004, Preds GM David Poile made a trade that barely registered any attention locally, let alone across the league. Today, however, that trade is a big reason why the Preds are in the middle of the Western Conference playoff race.
Nashville sent minor league defenseman Timo Helbling to the Tampa Bay Lightning for a eighth-round draft pick. Four months later the Preds used that same draft pick to select little-known goaltending prospect Pekka Rinne of Finland.
Fast forward five years and Rinne has established himself as one of the top young goaltenders in the NHL, ranking among the league leaders in Goals Against Average, Save Percentage, and Shutouts this season. The 26-year old was the winning goaltender in this year’s YoungStars Game at All-Star Weekend after earning two All-Star Game appearances at the AHL level.