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Shea Weber gets $7.5 million in arbitration

The Predators defenseman asked for $8.5 million, while Nashville submitted a $4.85 million offer. Arbitrators have historically split the difference, but this time Weber won -- which isn't such a stretch, given that he made $4.5 million last season and led the Preds to their first-ever playoff series win.

What does this mean going forward? Well, Weber will still be a restricted free agent next summer, so he can't get to the open market for a giant payday before a new CBA is implemented on Sept. 1.

But it's possible he'll be traded, since another trip to arbitration after a strong season could put him over the $10 million mark, which seems too rich for Nashville's taste.

And that begs a question: If the Predators can't or won't lay out the dough for their only bona fide star and they trade him, what else is there for the Predators?

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