Seattle Expansion Draft Series: Article 5 - Calgary and Carolina

Welcome back to our Seattle Expansion Draft Series. If you haven’t read the first article that lays out the rules of the expansion draft, that would be a good starting point, as I’ll only give the very basic rules in each of these follow up articles. If you are interested in Detroit, that was the second article.

I’m going to take a look at either one or two other NHL teams each week. My goal is to get some input from people who cover the team because let’s face it, I don’t have the knowledge of each NHL team to be able to give you the best idea of what to expect. Keep in mind that there’s a lot that could happen between now and July, when the lists are finalized. So let’s dive into Calgary and Carolina!

Calgary Flames

For the Calgary section, I had the pleasure of getting to talk to Mike Pfeil, who is one of the best covering the Flames. He is a part of the ScorchStack newsletter.


Jacob Markstrom has a NMC, and he would be the choice anyway. Tyler Parsons meets the exposure requirement.


On the backend, Noah Hanifin is an obvious choice along with Rasmus Andersson. Pfeil thinks it’s unlikely that Calgary exposes its captain, so add Mark Giordano to the list.


Calgary has another NMC at forward, this time in the form of Milan Lucic. Pfeil thinks the team will convince him to waive it. The team honored his NMC when they acquired him, which they didn’t have to, and it seems very unlikely that Seattle would take him.

They’re going to protect their first line of Matthew Tkachuk, Elias Lindholm, and Dillon Dube. From their second line, Pfeil adds Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan. The last two  forwards are Andrew Mangiapane and Mikael Backlund.

Lucic would satisfy one of the forward exposures, and Calgary would need to add another player to meet the other one.

Current Predicted Protections

Jacob Markstrom

Noah Hanifin
Rasmus Andersson
Mark Giordano

Matthew Tkachuk
Johnny Gaudreau
Sean Monahan
Mikael Backlund
Elias Lindholm
Andrew Mangiapane
Dillon Dube

Notable Unprotected Players

Chris Tanev
Oliver Kylington

Carolina Hurricanes

To get a handle on Carolina’s choices, I reached out to someone I love talking to, who also happens to follow Carolina as a secondary team, our good friend Prashanth Iyer. I imagine most people reading this know who he is, but if you don’t, he’s one of the smartest people to cover hockey that you can find. He doesn’t write much anymore, but he co-hosts a twice-weekly Red Wings podcast called Wings for Breakfast that is a must-listen.


This one was easy. Petr Mrazek and James Reimer are both going to be UFAs, and my default position is not to protect UFAs unless there is a good reason (see next section!).

Alex Nedeljkovic will be the goalie protected, unless something changes. He’s been playing well in the NHL this season, and the team will likely not want to take the risk of losing him because of how hard it can be to find solid NHL goaltending. Jeremy Helvig meets the exposure requirement.


Remember a minute ago when I said that my default position is not to protect UFAs? I’m breaking that here because Prashanth says he believes there is a chance that the Hurricanes could lose Dougie Hamilton to Seattle if they have the opportunity to make him a contract offer.

Basically Seattle can make contract offers to any UFA and RFA who’s not protected and not exempt during a 2 day window in between when the expansion draft protection rosters are submitted and the expansion draft. For the RFAs, it’s treated just like a UFA. There’s no matching opportunity, no compensation.

After that, the Canes will likely protect Jaccob Slavin and Brett Pesce. This is going to lead to exposing players that Seattle will likely be happy to see available. Teams would love the opportunity to get Haydn Fleury and Jake Bean for free.

Iyer says that there’s a “chaos possibility” where Carolina protects Bean over Hamilton, but he thinks they will protect Hamilton. No matter what they choose, they won’t have a problem meeting the exposure requirement.


At forward, Jordan Staal’s NMC is going to be very interesting. He could waive it, but for this article, we’re going to assume he doesn’t. Prashanth says that if he does waive it, Carolina may go 8 and 1 to protect the extra defenseman.

Andrei Svechnikov and Sebastian Aho are obviously going to be protected. Teuvo Teräväinen and Nino Niedereitter are next, although Iyer says that Nino was iffy, but “he’s probably played his way into being protected.” Vincent Trocheck and Jesper Fast round out the list Iyer expects to be protected.

He says that there are three forwards on the outside looking in at this point that have a case to be protected: He says Jordan Martinook provides leadership, Warren Foegele just signed a contract last year, and Morgan Geekie is a good young player.

At this point, Carolina wouldn’t have any forwards that meet the exposure requirement, but I’m not worrying about that aspect right now. The team has over three months to figure out a way to fix that.

The real takeaway here is that Carolina is going to lose a good player.

Current Predicted Protections

Alex Nedeljkovic

Dougie Hamilton
Jaccob Slavin
Brett Pesce

Jordan Staal
Andrei Svechnikov
Sebastian Aho
Teuvo Teräväinen
Nino Niedereitter
Vincent Trochek
Jesper Fast

Notable Unprotected Players

Jake Bean
Haydn Fleury
Jordan Martinook
Warren Foegele
Morgan Geeky

Previous Articles

Article 1: The Rules
Article 2: Detroit (First Time)
Article 3: Anaheim and Arizona
Article 4: Boston and Buffalo