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Top 10 Preds Moments of 2018

From the Presidents' Trophy to the Vezina Trophy and Everything In Between, Here Are the Best Moments of the Past Year

by Brooks Bratten @brooksbratten / Senior Communications & Content Coordinator

From trophies to contracts, banners and disguises, 2018 had a little bit of everything.

Mike Fisher went for one last skate, Ryan Ellis committed to Nashville, Pekka Rinne had his best year ever and Nick Bonino played the ultimate prank.

It was quite a year in Smashville, so before we turn the calendar to 2019 to usher in the next 12 months of memories, take a look back at the Top 10 moments of 2018.

Jan. 31, 2018: Mike Fisher Announces Return to Play for Preds

After retiring following the conclusion of the 2017-18 season, former Preds Captain Mike Fisher thought his playing days were over. But, as the calendar flipped to 2018, he began to think otherwise.

Fisher did what only a handful of others have ever done and came out of retirement, returning to play 16 games for the Preds in 2018. He even scored in his first game back in the lineup.

Feb. 22, 2018: Pekka Rinne Records 300th Career Win

When all is said and done, 2018 might go down as Pekka Rinne's best year of his career, and the first milestone came in February as he collected his 300th career victory, all with the Predators.

Rinne took his spot as the seventh active goaltender to attain the feat, becoming the third Finnish netminder to ever collect 300 NHL wins, and just the 34th goaltender in NHL history to hit the mark.

March 1, 2018: David Poile Becomes Winningest General Manager in NHL History

The year will also go down as one of the best for Preds GM David Poile. At the beginning of March, with a 4-2 win in Edmonton, Poile collected his 1,320th career victory as an NHL general manager, surpassing Glen Sather for the all-time mark.

April 5, 2018: Preds Clinch First Central Division Title and Presidents' Trophy on Same Night

The Preds' 4-3 victory over Washington gave Nashville their first Central Division title in franchise history. The two points also bestowed a regular-season Western Conference crown on the Predators.

The final horn at Capital One Arena didn't sound the end of the tension, however, as the team then ran to the locker room to view the closing moments of the Boston Bruins and Florida Panthers game on their phones. A Jared McCann goal with 5:37 left was just what the Panthers and Preds needed; the Panthers' 3-2 triumph clinching one more banner for the Predators, this time the League's regular-season crown as Presidents' Trophy winners.

June 20, 2018: Pekka Rinne Wins First Vezina Trophy

At the 2018 NHL Awards in Las Vegas, Rinne became the first player in Predators franchise history to take home a performance-based trophy.

Nominated for the Vezina Trophy - given annually to the League's best goaltender - on four occasions across his NHL career, it was the NHL's 31 general managers who cast 22 first-place votes to ensure Rinne would earn the hardware this time.

Aug. 14, 2018: Ryan Ellis Signs Eight-Year Contract

Just the next core player to commit to Nashville long term, Associate Captain Ryan Ellis signed an eight-year deal to remain with the Preds through the 2026-27 season.

Said Ellis after the deal was signed: "I'm getting paid more than enough to play hockey. It was just about coming across a fair deal that would work for both sides. We have other guys that need to be re-upped and need to be signed in the future, and I had to do my part to keep this thing going in the right direction."

Video: Bonino dresses up as a fan to trick his teammates

Sep. 28, 2018: Nick Bonino Goes Undercover at Preds Fest

Perhaps the best lighthearted moment of the year came prior to the puck dropping on the 2018-19 season. Armed with a wig, glasses and just the right amount of personality, Preds centerman Nick Bonino went undercover to trick his teammates at PredsFest, and the results were quite hilarious.

Oct. 9, 2018: Preds Raise Banners on Opening Night

For the second consecutive season, Nashville's home schedule began with a banner-raising ceremony at Bridgestone Arena to commemorate the past campaign's success.

Nov. 3, 2018: Rinne Signs Contract, Shuts Out Bruins on His Birthday

Rinne's banner year continued on his birthday. After signing a two-year deal that morning to remain in Nashville through the 2020-21 season, the goaltender shut out the Boston Bruins, 1-0, to complete the celebration.

"It was a pretty cool day," Rinne said following the victory. "I came in this morning and signed a two-year extension, it's my birthday and we got a huge win. I'm very happy, and so proud that I can stay with this organization. They gave me a chance a long time ago, and I'm very fortunate to still be able to chase my dreams."

Dec. 13, 2018: David Poile Inducted Into U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame

An honored member of the class of 2018 - along with Gordon "Red" Berenson, Natalie Darwitz, Leland "Hago" Harrington and Paul Stewart - Poile was inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame, during a ceremony held in Nashville, of all places.

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