Losing often breeds change. For the Predators, a disastrous 2013 season means some stalwarts who are free agents could be in for difficult contract negotiations this summer.

Last year, Nashville opted to keep pending unrestricted free agent forward Brandon Yip, a waiver-wire pickup who became a solid depth player up front. This year, Yip is unrestricted again, but he’s not as much of a slam-dunk to return.

Nashville kept forwards Matt Halischuk and Nick Spaling when they were restricted free agents two years ago. After mediocre seasons, the duo might be unworthy of qualifying offers.

With starting goaltender Pekka Rinne coming off of hip surgery, should experienced backup Chris Mason be retained, or should Magnus Hellberg be promoted from the minors?

These conundrums are vastly different from those in the franchise’s recent past.

A year ago it was quite obvious that the Predators wanted to re-sign their unrestricted free agents including forward Paul Gaustad as well as defensemen Hal Gill and Ryan Suter. It was also clear that they would make minimal effort to hold on to forwards Alexander Radulov (restricted free agent) and Andrei Kostitsyn (unrestricted).

Nashville kept Gill and Gaustad, lost out on Suter, and saw Radulov and Kostitsyn head off to the Kontinental Hockey League.

Two years ago, the Predators let forwards Joel Ward, Steve Sullivan and Marcel Goc walk, while keeping their younger restricted free agents as replacements as part of a quasi-rebuild.