Originally posted on Inside Smashville  |  Last updated 5/9/12

Ryan Suter fought back tears as he talked to the media outside the Predators locker room on Wednesday night.

“Wherever I sign, I want to be there for the rest of my career. That affects my family, my wife, my kid, if we have more kids, everything goes into it,” Suter said.

The U.S. Olympian is set to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1, 2012. General Manager David Poile has previously made it clear that Nashville wants to re-sign the defenseman to a long-term contract.

The Predators were at Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday to clean out their lockers and have their end-of-season physicals.

While most players lurked around the hallways, signing team memorabilia, and doing interviews with the media, there was no sign of Suter until many members of the media had already left the building.

“Right away, after [Game 5] someone asked me [about the contract]. It kind of made me mad, and that is why I have been avoiding you guys,” Suter explained. “After the game a guy asked it, and I got caught off guard. You are in playoff mode, and you lose, and you don’t think about it. Now, all of a sudden, it is brought up. I didn’t have time to sit back, and talk to my family, and figure out what we want to do.”

On Wednesday, Suter met with Poile and the two are expected to meet again in a couple of weeks to make a decision on the situation.

Suter gave no definitive answer on his intentions for the future, though he did say his partnership with Shea Weber on defense is not something he has given any thought to – yet.

“Obviously, he is a great player,” Suter said. “I have enjoyed playing with him, and I would love to play with him, wherever that might be. But I think we are in different situations, too, with how the [Collective Bargaining Agreement] works. I haven’t really thought about it—just thinking out loud there.”

Weber remains a restricted free agent on July 1st.

A mainstay on the blue line since the 2005-06 season, the 7th overall draft pick from 2003 has 38 goals and 200 assists in 542 regular-season games for the Predators.

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