Predators coach Barry Trotz hadn't seen Craig Smith play in person since May.

In Smith's first practice with the Predators since the 113-day lockout ended, Trotz had one obvious thought as he watched the fleet-footed, second-year center participate in drills Saturday at Bridgestone Arena.

"He just glides across the ice," said Trotz, who could only watch because the coaching staff was still under lockout rules and prohibited from leading practice.

The Predators believe Smith, 23, can turn into an offensive weapon in the shortened season. Or at least that's what they're banking on.

"He's got that extra gear," Trotz said. "I think Craig, his second year, you want more from him."