The Nashville Tennessean reflects on how at the end of an informal player-run practice Tuesday at Centennial Sportsplex, Predators defensemen Shea Weber and Roman Josi fed each other one-timer slap shots on an empty net. It marked the first on-ice chemistry-development session between the two since Weber’s longtime defensive partner, Ryan Suter, signed with the Minnesota Wild this summer.
How quickly Weber and Josi figure out each other likely will be one of the challenges the Predators face as they enter the 2012-13 season — whenever it starts.
“Every chance you get to get on the ice with each other, you try to build some chemistry,” Weber said. “In the past, Ryan and I didn’t have chemistry as soon we started playing together, so it will take a little bit of time.”
Predators coach Barry Trotz often compared Josi to Suter at the same age.
“He’s a good enough skater. He’s smart enough that he sees the game. He’ll be fine,” Weber said. “He’ll do well.”
During the summer, the two started the process of forming a pair by exchanging photos of their homes. Josi sent Weber pictures of himself on a motor scooter in his home country of Switzerland, and Weber messaged Josi photos of his home in western Canada.
“We talked a couple of times,” Josi said. “We didn’t talk about hockey, more how his summer is going. He sent me some pictures of his hometown. Maybe we’ll get back together here in Nashville and talk about hockey more.”