Asked to evaluate Roman Josi near the end of the 2013 season, Predators coach Barry Trotz gushed about the second-year defenseman.

Josi’s skating, vision, overall awareness and confidence all had taken major steps from his rookie season, Trotz raved. Yet the coach also said the 6-foot-1, 192-pounder from Bern, Switzerland, lacked “man-strength.”

That’s why Josi has a simple philosophy for his offseason regimen.

“Get bigger and put some muscles on,” he said.

Though Josi, 22, took major steps this past season, scoring more points (18) than in his rookie season (16), and averaging more than five minutes more ice time per game, he knows he’s still not a complete player.

“His conditioning was better,” general manager David Poile said. “We talked about his nutrition, his strength. When you’re going to be playing big minutes like he did this year, you’re going to need that.”

Last summer, Josi worked on his nutrition. He cut out pasta and carbohydrates, and ate more vegetables. The results were visible, in his appearance and in his game.

His body fat dropped from 12.5 percent to 8.5 percent. He looked more assertive and handled the extra ice time with ease.

“Playing against top lines every game helps you to work on your defense game,” Josi said. “I think that was the biggest step I took. It gives you more comfort if you play a lot of minutes.”

Josi started the year with captain Shea Weber as a partner, only to be moved off the top defensive pairing briefly. Playing with Weber, a two-time Norris Trophy finalist, enabled Josi to develop at a faster pace and give him more confidence heading into the offseason.