Predators' Austin Watson charged with domestic violence

Nashville Predators forward Austin Watson has been charged with domestic assault, the Franklin (Tennessee) Police Department confirmed to ESPN on Wednesday.

Watson, 26, was arrested at 7:20 p.m. Saturday in Franklin. He is free on a $4,500 bond and is due in court June 28. The police department says the incident report is not a public record due to pending criminal action.

The team on Wednesday issued a statement saying it was aware of the incident.

"We are still gathering facts and it is not appropriate for us to comment further at this time, but this is a matter that we are taking very seriously and will cooperate fully with the investigation by law enforcement," the statement said. "The Nashville Predators have and will continue to stand side by side with AMEND in the fight to end violence against women."

The AMEND Together initiative (formerly called MEND) is a program of YWCA Nashville and Middle Tennessee, dedicated to ending violence against women through education. In 2017, Watson joined teammates Ryan Ellis, Mike Fisher and PK Subban as part of a public awareness campaign titled "Unsilence the Violence." In conjunction, the Nashville Predators Foundation pledged $500,000 to MEND.

Watson, selected by the Predators with the 18th overall pick in the 2010 draft, set a career-high in goals (14) and points (19) last season as Nashville won the Presidents' Trophy for the league's best record.

He scored eight points in 13 playoff games. Nashville was eliminated in the second round by the Winnipeg Jets.

Watson signed a three-year, $3.3 million contract last July.