In an interesting twist, the Nashville Predators decided to sign free agent forward Cody Bass to a one-year two-way contract. This happens not too long after the Chicago Blackhawks picked up Mike Liambas. The two will effectively be switching sides next season in the AHL when the Milwaukee Admirals play against the Rockford IceHogs.
Press Release via Nashville Predators:
Nashville, Tenn. (July 4, 2015) – Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced Saturday that the club has signed free-agent forward Cody Bass to a one-year, two-way contract worth $575,000 at the NHL level and $125,000 at the AHL level.
Bass, 28 (1/7/87), has appeared in 49 NHL contests with Ottawa and Columbus since 2007-08, posting five points (2g-3a) and 71 penalty minutes. The 6-0, 202-pound center has spent the majority of the past eight seasons with Binghamton, Springfield and Rockford of the American Hockey League, posting 89 points (37g-52a) and 710 penalty minutes, including 14 points (6g-8a) and 165 penalty minutes in 61 games with the IceHogs in 2014-15. The Owen Sound, Ont., native has served as an alternate captain in four of the past five seasons, and won the 2011 Yanick Dupre Memorial Award as presented annually to the AHL’s man of the year for service to his local community. He also helped Binghamton win the 2011 Calder Cup.
Ottawa’s third choice, 95th overall (fourth round), in the 2005 Entry Draft, Bass logged 247 Ontario Hockey League games with Mississauga and Saginaw from 2003-07, amassing 124 points (40g-84a) and 371 penalty minutes.
It’s not just about the fighting side of things for Bass. That’s just one element to his physical style of play. He does also have the capacity to get on the scoresheet and these past two AHL seasons have been among the best in his career. Last season with Rockford he scored 14 points (6 goals, 8 assists) in 61 games with 165 penalty minutes and a plus/minus rating of +4. Prior to that he was with the Springfield Falcons where he had a new career high as a pro with 18 points (8 goals, 10 assists) during the 2013-14 season.
I actually see Bass for Liambas as a clean trade off and possibly even better off on the Admirals side of things. Bass is a bigger body player but also carriers the weight of 49 games of NHL experience when he was a member of the Ottawa Senators and Columbus Blue Jackets. Considering the youthful roster the Admirals will be carrying next season having someone who has been to that level is a great boost and can provide excellent on and off ice leadership. Speaking of which, Bass has been an alternate captain with three different AHL teams in four seasons. He’s a very respected player in the locker room and, good news to the Admirals front office and their outreach programs, also gets involved in his local community and won the 2010-11 Yanick Dupré Memorial Award.
It might still be sad to see a personality such as Liambas leave only to join the enemies down in Rockford. It also was tough seeing players like Joe Piskula and Magnus Hellberg leave. But you know what? There are a ton of pieces being brought in that make last year’s squad a whole lot better: Max Görtz, Kristian Näkyvä, Brandon Whitney, Juuse Saros, Max Reinhart, Conor Allen, and now Bass. That’s not even mentioning the return of a 100% healthy Miikka Salomäki and Félix Girard. What if Vladislav Kamenev joins? The 2015-16 Milwaukee Admirals are a stacked team with lots of potential.
What do you make of the Milwaukee Admirals roster right now? Are you a fan of the Cody Bass signing? Do you feel that the role of the enforcer is dead to the game of hockey?