Latest Expansion Draft Buzz

The Pittsburgh Penguins official protection list is in and not a surprise they went with eight skaters.

Sidney Crosby
Evgeni Malkin
Phil Kessel
Patric Hornqvist
Kris Letang
Brian Dumoulin
Justin Schultz
Olli Maatta
Matt Murray


Among the key players left unprotected.

Bryan Rust, Carl Hagelin, Ian Cole, Scott Wilson and obviously Marc Andre Fleury.

What does it mean?

Marc Andre Fleury is heading to Vegas one way or another. What’s not hammered down is whether it’s through a trade or expansion draft selection.

Vegas taking Fleury solely as the Penguins selection without the Penguins having to send an asset or two to Vegas via trade to take Fleury and stay off other players is just not adding up and would be bad asset management from Vegas.

The belief for weeks has been that a side deal has been worked out.

With a player like Bryan Rust left unprotected, there’s certainly a side deal in place.

Rust would be of great value to Vegas and Pittsburgh protecting him over Patric Hornqvist has caught some by surprise but Hornqvist per a person close to the situation would have been too risky to expose because of his trade value to other teams.

Vegas could have worked out a trade with another club and had incentive to select Hornqvist and trade him to the club of interest.

The Penguins, according to a source, also had no choice but to protect four defensemen due to the RFA window for Vegas. That means Justin Schultz and Brian Dumoulin are not permitted to negotiate with Vegas.

Available Penguins left unprotected

Josh Archibald (F)
Nick Bonino (F)
Matt Cullen (F)
Jean-Sebastien Dea (F)
Carl Hagelin (F)
Tom Kuhnhackl (F)
Chris Kunitz (F)
Kevin Porter (F)
Bryan Rust (F)
Tom Sestito (F)
Oskar Sundqvist (F)
Dominik Uher (F)
Garrett Wilson (F)
Scott Wilson (F)
Ian Cole (D)
Frank Corrado (D)
Trevor Daley (D)
Tim Erixon (D)
Cameron Gaunce (D)
Ron Hainsey (D)
Stuart Percy (D)
Derrick Pouliot (D)
Chad Ruhwedel (D)
Mark Streit (D)
David Warsofsky (D)
Marc-Andre Fleury (G)

Expansion Draft Key Dates

Today: UFA/RFA Interview Period Begins (only applies to Players who are available for selection in the Expansion Draft) for the Expansion Club only (10 a.m. ET).

*NHL clubs are only permitted to make trades with the Vegas Golden Knights. Announcements of trades won’t be made until June 21.

Wednesday, June 21: 10:00 a.m. ET Deadline for the Expansion Club to submit its Expansion Draft Selections to Central Registry and the NHLPA.

*Deadline for the Vegas Golden Knights to submit contracts for any pending UFA/RFAs who are selected by the Expansion Club and signed to a new contract (10 a.m. ET).

*The Vegas Golden Knights are permitted to sign a current or pending Free Agent on a Current Club’s list of Available Players during the period between 10:01 a.m. ET on Sunday, June 18, and 9:59 a.m. ET on Wednesday, June 21. If the Golden Knights sign a Restricted Free Agent from the Available List of a Current Club during the four day period, the Current Club will not be entitled to any compensation from the Expansion Club.

*An announcement of the Golden Knight’s Selections will be in conjunction with the 2017 NHL Awards (8 p.m. ET) show. Each selection will be announced throughout the show in order of how teams finished in the regular season standings. The Golden Knights first announced selection will be from Colorado.

Thursday June, 22: Expansion Draft Signing Moratorium and Trade/Waiver Freeze are lifted (8 a.m. ET).[/hide]

— Happy Fathers Day —