Junio 22, 2017

Golden Knights Ask Fans for Input on Which Blackhawks Player to Pick

19 Junio 2017, 10:02 | Gerardo Tarin

Vegas' plans keep foes guessing

New York Rangers defenseman Dan Girardi gets set during a faceoff in the first period of an NHL hockey game against the Arizona Coyotes in Glendale Ariz. The Rangers will buy out the remaining three years

The NHL froze its rosters at 12 p.m. today and two hours later teams submitted their protection lists to the NHL Central Registry for review. So there are definitely some great goalies available.

I got a call from the guys after (the protected lists were released) and they were like, "I wonder if I'm going to get picked" and they did get picked ... and those guys went and really enjoyed their other teams. "We were able to acquire a player that we do not have to protect and it gives us a little more clarity there". Zach Werenski, who was the leading scorer among Blue Jackets defensemen this season, is protected from the expansion draft itself due to this past season being his rookie season. But teams could only protect one goalie, and there was no way The King - even at age 35 - was going to be exposed.

That would mean Stempniak and forward Joakim Nordstrom would be available to the Golden Knights, and Stempniak could be the choice. "We expect to put a good, entertaining club on the ice". He has already declared giving the no-movement clause in his contract with the Pittsburgh Penguins, which clearly makes him up for grabs. At 25, he could be a Top Six forward with the Knights, carrying a team friendly cap hit of just $640,000 United States before his deal runs out in 2018.

Vatanen was the odd-man out in being left unprotected from a deep and talented group of Ducks defensemen.

Now that the lists have been revealed, Vegas has the opportunity to conduct talks with free agents, restricted and unrestricted. Wennberg has almost doubled his point total each season with the Blue Jackets and has the second longest average ice time of any forward, only coming behind Nick Foligno. Any player signed in this manor will count as the Expansion Draft pick from that team.

What's uncertain is how many trades the Golden Knights will reach with teams to influence which player Vegas selects or avoids in exchange for draft picks, something McPhee hopes to stockpile.

"We've got lots of things lined up, but until we see everything, we don't have anything", McPhee told reporters.

While teams have two options for the number of players they can protect, the Wild will nearly surely go with the option that allows them to protect seven forwards, three defensemen and one goaltender. Side deals - with offers of picks or players to avoid certain selections - are allowed.

Thornton had a cap hit of $6.8 million and Marleau $6.7 million in the last of three-year deals.

The Vegas Golden Knights expansion draft will be Wednesday, and many high-profile National Hockey League players are up for grabs.

Nick Shore, center: Possible trade bait in the days leading up to the expansion draft? Remember regular trading can resume Thursday, Jun. 22 at 8 a.m. ET and the free agency period begins Jul. 1.

The Panthers left Jonathan Marchessault out there after he broke through last season by leading Florida with 30 goals. The 28-year-old Raanta (2.26 GAA, .922 save mark over 30 games) proved he could handle the No. 1 job and his salary is just $1 million.

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