Three local NHLers made available for expansion draft

Paola Ditto
Giugno 20, 2017

Those were some of the more well-known names exposed by teams for the highly anticipated expansion draft, which will see the Las Vegas Golden Knights selected one player from each of the other 30 National Hockey League rosters.

Which is why he'd be a good choice for the Las Vegas Golden Knights in the expansion draft-Carrier is young, has Western Conference size, can skate, plays a north/south game and has upside.

Dorion, a GM of the year finalist, was en route to Vegas Monday night for the NHL Awards show, which is being held Wednesday.

The list of available players to the Knights suggests that might be the case.

On the defensive side, Carl Gunnarsson has been a productive player, and one with a reasonable salary that could fit the mold for Vegas.

Washington isn't the only team that might see a talented player plucked from its roster for nothing.

The Predators were put in a bind in exposing Neal once they elected to protect a fourth defenseman instead of the 10-time 20-goal-scorer. It's a good sign that the Golden Knights, even if they don't end up picking a bunch of great players, will at least end up with a stockpile of draft picks that'll hopefully turn into great players. On their protection list, which was submitted to the league Saturday, Washington included forwards Alex Ovechkin, Nick Backstrom, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Andre Burakovsky, Marcus Johansson, Lars Eller, Tom Wilson as well as defensemen John Carlson, Matt Niskanen and Dmitry Orlov and goaltender Braden Holtby. Anaheim wants to keep defensemen Sami Vatanen and Josh Manson, Columbus wants to keep goalie Joonas Korpisalo, forward Josh Anderson, and defenseman Jack Johnson, and NY wants to keep forwards Josh Bailey and Casey Cizikas.

The Islanders for one, reportedly have a deal in place that would send Vegas a first-round pick in order to pass on exposed forwards like Josh Bailey, Shane Prince, Brock Nelson and Ryan Strome.

The Sabres released their expansion draft protected list Sunday morning.

Now begins the jockeying regarding some of those top players. Sunday morning the National Hockey League made public all the players saved by teams along with players who are available for the draft.

McPhee said he has not completed any trades with teams looking to protect players, but he is now talking to several teams. The NHL's newest team will select one player from each organization to complete its first roster. It's clear that Blackhawks' general manager Stan Bowman is fairly high on Tomas Jurco, given the fact that he gave up a third round draft pick for him at the trade deadline. That suggests an understanding of the Knights' mediocrity in the early going and the need for as many potential draft picks and prospects as possible. Since defensemen are of the utmost importance they may choose to select two or there extra d-man for trade purposes. But that doesn't necessarily mean McPhee and his staff be drawn towards such prominent players, especially since the Knights GM has said his team will be built through the draft. "It's not so much an expansion draft for them as it is an accumulation of assets", Calgary General Manager Brad Treliving recently told Sportsnet 960 The Fan's "Boomer in the Morning". Even if the Golden Knights don't sign any unrestricted free agents by Wednesday night, this serves as a sort of first negotiating advantage for them before the first day of free agency on July 1. He did not say if that might be an option with McPhee and the Golden Knights.

Under the rules, Vegas must take at least three goalies, nine defencemen and 14 forwards - leaving four wild-card spots that can be used on any position.

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