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Expansion Draft Prediction Update - Part 1

Part 1 of our look at what has changed due to the trade deadline.

Las Vegas NHL Franchise Reveals Team Name And Logo Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Welcome back to our expansion draft prediction series. All of these articles are part of a story stream here, so if you scroll to the bottom of any of these, you can find links to every other article we’ve done.

Here’s what you’ll find in this article and in Part 2:

We will link to the original article for each team.

After that, we will have our predictions. In most cases, these will be the same as before. If something has changed, we will have the new player bolded, and the player being replaced in parentheses.

Luke Glendening, (Anthony Mantha)

Haha! That’s a joke! Where are you going?

We will have an update section to explain any changes or any other updates.

Since there are 30 teams, I’m sure that we will miss something. If you see something that you think we missed, please don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments (as if anyone would hesitate)

Our plan is for Mike and I to use our final protection predictions to each conduct a mock draft for a future article.

You will likely see more expansion draft coverage from WIIM as we get closer, but that’s what Mike and I have planned for our series.

Helpful tools

Capfriendly Expansion Tool: Here

Capfriendly Expansion FAQ: Here

Quick refresher

Teams can choose from two protection options. The first option is to protect 7 forwards, 3 defensemen, and 1 goalie. The second is 8 skaters and one goalie, which would be used if a team values a fourth defenseman over three forwards. Most teams will likely opt for the 7-3-1, but some teams should definitely use the 8-1 scheme.

Exposure requirements

This is where you really need to look at the Capfriendly Expansion Draft tool. Here are the requirements.

We wrote a lengthy primer on things like UFA and RFAs in our article on Detroit’s expansion protection, so if you need more information, go take a look.

Anaheim Ducks

Original article

Our Predictions

At forward: Corey Perry (NMC), Ryan Getzlaf (NMC), Ryan Kesler (NMC), Rickard Rakell, Jakub Silfverberg, Andrew Cogliano, Antoine Vermette

At defense: Kevin Bieksa (NMC), Sami Vatanen, Hampus Lindholm

In goal: John Gibson


Patrick Eaves was acquired from the Stars, but he is an impending UFA. It’s unlikely he will be protected unless Anaheim extends him prior to the draft. As we wrote about in the series, we don’t see players who will be UFAs after this season being protected, except in maybe a few scenarios.

It still seems likely Anaheim will try to do something to prevent losing Cam Fowler in the expansion draft.

Arizona Coyotes

Original article

Our Predictions

Forward: Alexander Burmistrov, Tobias Rieder, Anthony Duclair, Jordan Martinook, (Martin Hanzal)

Defense: Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Alex Goligoski (NMC), Connor Murphy, Luke Schenn

Goalie: Louis Domingue


Martin Hanzal was traded to the Wild, so scratch him off the list. They also traded Michael Stone, whom we discussed as a possible extension situation.

In our original article we said this:

The potential exception could be new waiver pickup Alexander Burmistrov. In 23 games played for Winnipeg this season, he has zero goals and two assists. The Coyotes seem to think that he will rebound. His career high is 28 points, so he has a long way to go before the team should consider protecting him.

He ended up with 5 goals and 9 assists in 26 games, and ended the season on their 2C. So, we’re replacing Hanzal with Burmistrov.

Another reason for Burmistrov is that he doesn’t have to be exposed to meet the exposure requirement like McGinn and Richardson do.

Boston Bruins

Original article

Our Predictions

Forward: David Krejci (NMC), Patrice Bergeron (NMC), David Backes (NMC), Brad Marchand, Ryan Spooner, David Pastrnak, Matt Beleskey

Defense: Zdeno Chara (NMC), Torey Krug, Colin Miller

Goal: Tuukka Rask


Boston acquired Drew Stafford, but he is an impending UFA. We are keeping these predictions the same.

Buffalo Sabres

Original article

Our Predictions

Forward: Ryan O’Reilly, Kyle Okposo (NMC), Evander Kane, Tyler Ennis, Marcus Foligno, Zemgus Girgensons, Johan Larsson

Defense: Rasmus Ristolainen, Jake McCabe, Zach Bogosian

Goalie: Robin Lehner



Calgary Flames

Original article

Our Predictions

Forward: Johnny Gaudreau, Sam Bennett, Sean Monahan, Mikael Backlund, Michael Frolik, Troy Brouwer, Alex Chiasson

Defense: Mark Giordano, Dougie Hamilton, TJ Brodie

Goalie: Chad Johnson


Elliott played better down the stretch, but Johnson still outperformed him this season. We don’t think they will make any changes from what we predicted.

Carolina Hurricanes

Original article

Our Predictions

Forward: Jordan Staal (NMC), Jeff Skinner, Victor Rask, Teuvo Teravainen, Lee Stempniak, Brock McGinn, Elias Lindholm

Defense: Justin Faulk, Ryan Murphy, Klas Dahlbeck

Goalie: Cam Ward


For this article, we are attempting to adhere to the exposure requirements wherever possible. For example, even though currently Pittsburgh would have to expose Murray, there is zero chance that’s happening.

As of right now, Carolina would be one forward and one defenseman short of meeting the exposure requirement, but they have enough options on forward (and the only current way to fix that on D would be to expose Faulk, which isn’t happening) that we are comfortable leaving the list as is.

Chicago Blackhawks

Original article

Our Predictions

Forward: Patrick Kane (NMC), Jonathan Toews (NMC), Marian Hossa (NMC), Artem Anisimov (NMC), Richard Panik, Ryan Hartman, Dennis Rasmussen.

Defense: Brent Seabrook (NMC), Duncan Keith (NMC), Niklas Hjalmarsson (NMC)

Goalie: Corey Crawford (NMC)


Marcus Kruger and Jordin Tootoo meet the forward exposure requirement, which was questionable before.

Colorado Avalanche

Original article

Our Predictions

Forward: Nathan MacKinnon, Matt Duchene, Gabriel Landeskog, Mikhail Grigorenko

Defense: Erik Johnson (NMC), Tyson Barrie, Francois Beachemin (NMC), Nikita Zadorov

Goalie: Calvin Pickard


We are still going with these predictions, which meet all the exposure requirements.

Columbus Blue Jackets

Original article

Our Predictions

Forward: Brandon Saad, Brandon Dubinsky (NMC), Nick Foligno (NMC), Scott Hartnell (NMC), Alexander Wennberg, Cam Atkinson, Boone Jenner, (Sam Gagner)

Defense: Seth Jones, David Savard, Ryan Murray

Goalie: Sergei Bobrovsky (NMC)


With Sam Gagner slowing down a bit, as well as being an impending UFA, we are changing his spot to Boone Jenner. Both he and Josh Anderson are young players that make sense to protect over Gagner, who may also ask for a huge raise. Jenner’s stats are a little better than Anderson, and he played an average of 4 minutes a game more than Anderson, so we’re going with him.

Dallas Stars

Original article

Our Predictions

Forward: Jason Spezza, Tyler Seguin, Jamie Benn, Radek Faksa, Brett Ritchie, Cody Eakin, Antoine Roussel

Defense: John Klingberg, Esa Lindell, Stephen Johns, (Jordie Benn)

Goalie: Kari Lehtonen


Jordie Benn was traded, so scratch him off the list. We originally had Stephen Johns in the mix of d-men to consider protecting, so we’re slotting him in. Dan Hamhuis is the other likely replacement, although his CF% is less than 1% above Johns, and only has .04 points per game more than Johns. Since Hamhuis is nine years older and with a 3M cap hit difference, we’ll select the younger player.

On offense, we’re staying the same.

Detroit Red Wings

Original article

Our Predictions

Forwards: Frans Nielsen (NMC), Henrik Zetterberg, Andreas Athanasiou, Anthony Mantha, Gustav Nyquist, Tomas Tatar, Justin Abdelkader

Defense: Mike Green, Danny DeKeyser, Nick Jensen, (Xavier Ouellet)

Goalie: Petr Mrazek


I just want to take a second here to say that Zetterberg should be protected because he was the Wings best player this year. I didn’t see that coming, so please take this as a mea culpa (this is Peter writing). I (hopefully obviously) think the world of our captain, but I didn’t think he still had this much left in the tank. I was wrong, and he should 100% be protected.

With that out of the way...

OK, here’s the thing. If you didn’t read the original Detroit article, PLEASE go back and read that. We are not predicting what Holland should do, but what he will do.

Let’s take this backwards. Mrazek should still be protected. On defense, I know what you are going to say. Mike and I don’t think DDK should be protected. But, be honest with yourself, you know he will be. After his recent extension, they aren’t going to leave him exposed. Also, do you really think Vegas would take him? So, you expose someone on the first year of a long contract that ends up continuing to play for you...

Mike Green is 100% getting protected unless he’s traded beforehand.

At this point, people are going to argue for Nick Jensen over Ouellet. I hear them, and I agree for multiple reasons. The easiest is that I think some people overvalue our current NHL defensemen not named Mike Green. I don’t see Vegas drooling over taking any of our defensemen, when Darren Helm, Jimmy Howard (if they are looking for goalies), or Riley Sheahan is available. Yes, I know that Sheahan didn’t score for a calendar year. But, I still think that Vegas would take him over any d-men we leave exposed. Maybe I’m wrong. We’ll see.

Additionally, Detroit signed Jensen to a 2 year contract extension this season, which certainly sends a signal they plan on protecting him.

On the forwards side, Mike and I both agree that we should not protect Justin Abdelkader because of his contract, but just like with DeKeyser, that is probably going to happen regardless.

Nothing has really changed on the forwards side, and we still think those will be the 7 forwards protected.

Edmonton Oilers

Original article

Our Predictions

Forward: Leon Draisaitl, Milan Lucic, Jordan Eberle, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Patrick Maroon, Mark Letestu, Zach Kassian

Defense: Andrej Sekera, Oscar Klefbom, Adam Larsson

Goalie: Cam Talbot


Edmonton acquired David Desharnais, but he will be a UFA. Even though they are 1 forward short of the exposure requirement, it seems they can easily make that happen, so we aren’t going to worry about it. If they don’t make any changes, they’d likely expose Letestu.

Florida Panthers

Original article

Our Predictions

Forwards: Aleksander Barkov, Vincent Trocheck, Jonathan Huberdeau, Nick Bjugstad, Reilly Smith, Colton Sceviour, Jonathan Marchessault

Defense: Keith Yandle (NMC), Aaron Ekblad, Jason Demers

Goalie: Roberto Luongo


We’re staying with our original picks here.

Los Angeles Kings

Original article

Our Predictions

Forwards: Anze Kopitar (NMC), Jeff Carter, Tyler Toffoli, Tanner Pearson, (Nick Dowd), (Dustin Brown), (Marian Gaborik)

Defense: Drew Doughty, Alec Martinez, Jake Muzzin, Derek Forbort

Goalie: Jonathan Quick


This is going to be the biggest change of part one. Los Angeles fired Dean Lombardi and Darryl Sutter. Clearly management isn’t happy with the team’s current direction, so they may use the expansion draft to attempt to shed a contract if possible. We originally had the team using a 7-3-1 protection scheme, but we are now going to change to an 8-1, mainly to protect young defenseman Derek Forbort.

He finished the season playing top pair with Drew Doughty and played an average of 20 minutes this season. Since Doughty had an ATOI of 27:09 (!), it makes sense to keep a defenseman who seems to have promise and can play 20 minutes a game.

Kopitar has to stay protected, and we will also keep Carter, Toffoli, and Pearson based on both production this year and youth.

And that’s the end of Part 1. Part 2 will be posting in the near future. If you go onto the Capfriendly expansion draft tool we linked to at the top, you can input these selections into it. Create a free account, and your selections will be saved for you the next time you go there.

If you fill in our selections from Part 1 and Part 2, then you can play along with the mock draft that Mike and I do in a future article.

We hope you are continuing to enjoy this series, and we’ll see you in the comments.