The Knights are not the Only Golden Team

*Guest Blog Alert*

I’m getting the NorthRow band back together, starting with Sarge giving us a helpful guide to the Expansion draft, because let’s not kid ourselves, I don’t understand such intricacies. 

In less than 3 weeks on Wednesday June 21st, the 2017 Expansion draft will take place.

The Las Vegas Golden Knights, (still a dumb name) will have the opportunity to poach 1 player from every other team in the NHL, and this is causing a stir.

As many people are aware, Expansion drafts are exactly the same stakes as the military drafts of WWI and WWII. So, clearly, for the teams in the NHL this is the conscription crisis of 1917 again, 100 years later. Similar things will be happening, as these soliders will travel to new lands and fight with colours on their jersey they may not agree with. There will be pain, Babcock level pain, but patience is key for all 6 fans of Vegas. Yes, all 6. Including Jose Bautista who owns a part of them? I think. (He also owns the Texas Rangers, but that’s for another day) Anyways…

What does this mean for the teams that we actually give a shit about? Not much actually. For once, the Toronto Maple Leafs are probably the luckiest team in the NHL. Could this have a correlation to the fact we wore St. Pats green jerseys for the first time in 15 years this year? Absolutely, we have the luck of the Irish, much like OnePercent when he has a few too many at the Maddy, we are cruising at the draft. (synonym for beer)

The best players on the Leafs are all exempt from the draft, because they are young, which means we can protect players like JVR, Brown, Bozak, Kadri, Komarov, Rielly, Gardiner, and Andersen without much thought. Matthews, Marner, Nylander, Hyman, Zaitsev, Soshnikov, Kapanen – they are all automatically protected because of their age. So much like the Knights, the Leafs are in fact, Golden. We have to decide on whether to protect 2 of Martin, Leipsic, Rychel, or Leivo, with most pundits believing that Babcock wants to protect Martin and most fans saying what????

Matt Martin is a serviceable 4th liner, but he’s making a mint of money for the next 3 years and I’m not that comfortable with keeping him instead of someone like Rychel who’s about the same size, has a mean streak and can actually score at an age that is about 7 years younger, don’t quote me, I don’t fact check.

Here’s some important dates that I stole from another blog because I’m not going to rewrite the same information over again.

June 12: Deadline for teams to ask that a player waive their no-move clause. For Nashville and Pittsburgh, the deadline is the day after the cup final if that’s later than June 12. The time is 5 p.m. (all times are Eastern Time).

June 14: The last possible day for the Stanley Cup Final

June 15: The buyout window opens. For players with no-move clauses, the team must ask first if they wish to go through waivers before being bought out. To effect a buyout prior to the expansion draft, that request has to be made on this day.

June 16: Last chance to place players on waivers is noon. Players who were asked to waive their no-move clause for the expansion draft have until 5 p.m. to agree.

June 17: Waiver and trade freeze begins at 3 p.m. for all teams except Vegas. A moratorium on signing players to new SPCs begins at the same time (this includes a team’s UFAs and RFAs as well as any other new signing). The protection lists must be submitted by 5 p.m.

June 18: The NHL will distribute the approved lists by 10 a.m. to all NHL teams. The exposed UFA/RFA interview period for Vegas opens at the same time.

June 21: Vegas must submit their list of the lucky 30 players to the NHL by 10 a.m. and include any new SPCs signed for free agents. The names will be released as part of the NHL awards that evening.

June 22: The trade, signing and waiver freeze is lifted at 8 a.m. and all returns to normal.

The draft begins June 23, so the window to make trades is very compressed prior to the actual draft beginning. But the window to talk about them, is as long as it ever was.

So get ready for June 23rd, because for a few days the NHL will be bananas! Big Golden, Coke filled, Vegas bananas.

– Sarge

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