Earlier today, the NHL’s trade freeze arrived and now the entire league waits for the expansion draft and the first blush Vegas Golden Knights. There was a lot of speculation on Friday night surrounding Jordan Eberle but dawn Saturday arrived and the cooling had begun. I remain uncertain the open market value for No. 14 is enough to get a second pairing RHD. In today’s NHL, even a righty center like Derek Stepan might not get you that asset. We wait for the freeze to be over and look forward to the expansion draft.
ASSUMED PROTECTED LIST
- Goal: Cam Talbot
- Defense: Andrej Sekera, Adam Larsson, Oscar Klefbom
- Forwards: Leon Draisaitl, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Milan Lucic, Jordan Eberle, Patrick Maroon, Zack Kassian, Mark Letestu
This is the universally accepted list, I would put Jujhar Khaira on it but we should expect this to be the published list tomorrow. Mark Spector mentioned today that he could see Jordan Eberle not making this list, but that seems a distant bell.
- Not Available: Connor McDavid, Darnell Nurse, Matt Benning, Jesse Puljujarvi, Anton Slepyshev, Drake Caggiula, Nick Ellis.
Edmonton got very lucky with the timing of the expansion draft, their list and Toronto’s will easily be the most valuable in the NHL. Two years from now? Edmonton would be reeling at the thought of an expansion draft.
- G Laurent Brossoit, D Mark Fayne, D Kris Russell (ufa), D Griffin Reinhart (rfa), D Jordan Oesterle (ufa), D Dillon Simpson (rfa), D David Musil (rfa), C Jujhar Khaira, C David Desharnais (ufa), L Benoit Pouliot, R Tyler Pitlick (ufa), R Iiro Pakarinen.
My bet is Griffin Reinhart, but the Golden Knights may end up with a plethora of LHD and could choose Benoit Pouliot, Laurent Brossoit or Jujhar Khaira instead.
Lots of conversations about trade options and tomorrow morning when we see the final lists there may be an opportunity to make a trade that includes LV taking on a big contract. That aside, Edmonton is in pretty good position heading into this expansion draft. The trade prices for sellers today were severe and that’s putting it lightly, best to keep your powder dry and maybe tomorrow brings a change in the weather.
Note: The protected lists are leaking (WSH, LAK) and if the Oilers list comes out tonight I’ll update this post.