Tuesday, 21 August, 2018

Penguins' Fleury left available for Vegas expansion draft

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Frederick Owens | 28 June, 2017, 04:52

Key among those rumors and assumptions was that the Anaheim Ducks and Golden Knights have a deal in place that involves Sami Vatanen.

Eric Staal of the Minnesota Wild, Dustin Brown of the Los Angeles Kings and Tomas Plekanec of the Montreal Canadiens were among other forwards left unprotected. Sunday morning the National Hockey League made public all the players saved by teams along with players who are available for the draft.

As one example, the Blue Jackets are expected to send their first-round pick (24th overall) to Vegas in order for the team to not select players Columbus hopes to keep. It's hard to say for certain but the outlook seems to be that McPhee has a ton of control of this situation and that he alone will set the market for teams making these sorts of deals. "We really like what we're looking at right now". "Every team is this league has a chance to protect their roster". What better way to do that than flipping one of their most valued draft assets to a group of teams willing to compete to acquire him? The lockout threw things off a little, but six years after stockpiling picks at their expansion draft, Atlanta iced 90-point teams in two straight seasons. Rules of that nature will make it easier for the team to collect a cache of draft picks before they ever play a single game.

But Vegas general manager George McPhee has a simple solution for those teams that don't want to part with their star players.

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General manager George McPhee can start contemplating that for real after available players to the NHL's 31st franchise were released on Sunday morning. They also have to reach at least 60 percent of last year's $73 million salary cap ($43.8 million) and have at least 20 players under contract for next season.

The list of players protected from Wednesday's draft to stock the expansion Vegas Golden Knights is out, and conversely-and most importantly-the list of unprotected players. "Having the ability to have a spot to protect someone, if all the other boxes were checked, there certainly was an advantage". All of these players are unprotected for the expansion draft. The San Jose Sharks got second- and fourth-round picks for Mirco Mueller and a fifth-rounder, a safeguard against losing a 22-year-old defenseman for nothing.

His appeal: Turns out Staal still might have more to give as a top-two National Hockey League centre - rebounding from a meek finish in Carolina with 28 goals and 65 points in his first season for the Wild. That puts those teams and the Anaheim Ducks in position to work out a deal with Vegas, which could prove costly. "You had a number of teams that had expansion issues that they were trying to deal with". They needed only three seasons to make it to the 1996 final, only to be swept by the Colorado Avalanche. Marchessault is a free agent after this coming season.

By the time the initial Vegas roster is revealed in a live, made-for-TV show Wednesday night, he might be smiling even bigger than he was Sunday when he saw the options in front of him. The most notable players the Capitals could lose are defenseman Nate Schmidt and goaltender Philipp Grubauer.

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