Former Predators captain Greg Johnson dies at 48

Greg Johnson, who played with four teams in 12 NHL seasons and served six years as a Predators captain, died Monday at age 48.

The Chronicle-Journal in Ontario, near Johnson’s hometown of Thunder Bay, was first to report the news. No cause of death was given.

Selected by the Flyers with the 33rd pick in the 1989 NHL Entry Draft, the center toiled in the minors for several years before making his NHL debut with the Red Wings during the 1993-94 campaign. After three-plus seasons there, he joined the Penguins for a couple of seasons before going to the Blackhawks for one year.

The Predators grabbed Johnson with the 23rd pick in the 1998 NHL Expansion Draft, and he served as the team’s alternate captain for three seasons before becoming team captain for his final three years in the league before his retirement in 2006.

After signing a one-year deal to return to the Red Wings, Johnson retired before the 2006-07 season when a preseason physical revealed abnormal EKG results.

Johnson enjoyed his best season in the Predators’ inaugural campaign, finishing second on the team with 50 points (16 goals, 34 assists).

Johnson remained a fan favorite in Nashville years after his retirement.

In 785 career games, Johnson scored 369 points (145 assists, 224 points).

Johnson’s younger brother, Ryan, played 15 seasons in the NHL and is now an executive with the Canucks.