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Quick Hits: The Prediction Edition

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Detroit Red Wings v Columbus Blue Jackets Photo by Jamie Sabau/NHLI via Getty Images

In Red Wings Land

Who Red Wings will protect in expansion draft; who they might lose - mlive.com

Analysis: Hronek is an easy call. The Red Wings surely will protect younger players Cholowski and Lindstrom over veterans DeKeyser and Stecher.

(Khan’s article and my analysis here were written before the Red Wings acquired Nick Leddy. I’ve added an update a little further down)

Khan’s list differs from my last one in two regards. The above difference and Givani
Smith over Vlad Namestnikov.

I would include more of Khan’s reasoning for why the team will protect Cholowski and Lindstrom over Stecher, but that is the entirety of it.

I’ve written at length why I think this would be a mistake, but it’s entirely possible that it happens. The short version is that I see Stecher as a solid 2nd pair defenseman in the NHL, not just Detroit. I think he carried Marc Staal on that pairing, and that it would be very beneficial to keep him around at least through next season. I think the most likely ceiling for Cholowski and Lindstrom is 3rd pairing defenseman, and I think it’s far easier to find that than 2nd pairing defensemen.

It could be that Yzerman values each of those two players more than he values Stecher at this point. If he does that, I think it’s an almost certainty that Seattle will take Stecher.

For the forwards, like I’ve written before, I do think that Yzerman will decide that Namestnikov is currently more valuable for the team than Smith or Svechnikov. I hope I’ve made it clear that I really like those two players (and I certainly don’t dislike Cholowski or Lindstrom), and my saying that doesn’t mean I don’t care at all if we lose them.

UPDATE: Unless something changes, Namestnikov now must be exposed to meet the exposure requirement. So in that case, I do think they will protect Smith over Svechnikov.

There’s a reason I picked Smith for Seattle in my mock draft. I think he’s the type of player that every team needs and I think he can be very effective. I think there’s a real chance that Seattle takes him if Stecher is protected. I would also not be surprised to see them take Cholowski or Svechnikov.

At the end of the day, I don’t think that the player we lose will be someone we will look back and say “man, if only we had protected him.”

UPDATE: Well, it’s a good thing I wrote all that stuff because now things have changed with the acquisition of Nick Leddy. You have to imagine that he will be protected along with Hronek, and the chances that Stecher gets exposed have gone up for me. Maybe not. I still think it would be a mistake, as what I wrote above still applies.

EDIT: I’ve been thinking a lot about this because people have been asking why I think this deal makes it more likely that they expose Stecher. I don’t really have a good answer. I think it might be a subconscious hedging of my bets since I have been predicting all along that they would protect Stecher, and a lot of people are predicting he is exposed in recent articles. So my final protected list (unless there is another trade) is that Smith is the 7th forward protected and Hronek/Leddy/Stecher are protected. We’ll find out soon enough!


As with any of this stuff: I could be wrong! We’ll see.

The protection lists are due today, and they should be made public Sunday. I asked Capfriendly, and they are going to update their expansion draft tool to make it easy to do mock drafts.

Our plan is that I will have an article after the expansion draft lists are made public, and we will have a mock draft article the day of the expansion draft. Then we move onto the entry draft!

Speaking of which, we have two great prospect people on the Monday episode of Fer Sure to talk about the draft. Because it’s an NHL podcast, we will focus on the entire league, but there will absolutely be content specifically for Red Wings fans. If you have a question for Will or Dylan, you can ask it here. We are planning to record Sunday afternoon.

Around the NHL

Laine hopes new coach 'refreshes' Blue Jackets, wants to stay: report

"I scored lot of points in that span," Laine said. "It would be stupid not to use this potential. But what the coaches think, that's a totally different thing.

"Forwards wants to play an offensive style of hockey. If you want to score, you need to take some liberties. This is not possible if the coaches think a different way. I understand the tight strategy, but every player is different. I don't want to be same kind of player like everyone else. I am what I am, and I do things my own way. Everyone should be allowed to be what they are, but of course you have to stick with the team system."

It should have been no surprise to anyone that Patrik Laine and John Tortorella would mesh like alien life forms on a distant planet and an expendable scientist who should know better in most sci-fi movies.

It’ll be interesting to see if Laine’s potential can be salvaged. He showed himself to be one of the best pure scorers in recent memory early in his career.

Because it is paywalled, we are not going to include everything here. Listed below are his Detroit selections for the first three rounds.

From what I’ve seen, I would have taken William Eklund at 6, since he was still available in his mock draft. Obviously it’s impossible for him to predict the entire draft, but it should hopefully be a good way to look at the range of players likely to be available at different picks that Detroit will have, especially the earlier selections.