With all of this expansion chatter, I thought it might be interesting to see what a possible Expansion Draft could look like for the Red Wings. I also think it might be interesting to see who some of you would/not protect in a potential draft.
Since there has not been an expansion in the salary cap era, there really aren’t any rules to go by. For the sake of consistency, I figured we could use the rules from the 2000 Expansion Draft with tweaks tailored around the post 2005 lockout CBA(s). Also keep in mind that this would theoretically happen in June 2015.
Here are the rules from the 2000 Expansion Draft (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2000_NHL_Expansion_Draft):
“26 of the 28 teams existing in the league at the time of the draft were each allowed to protect either one goaltender, five defensemen, and nine forwards or two goaltenders, three defensemen, and seven forwards. The Atlanta Thrashers and Nashville Predators had their entire rosters protected, as they were the two newest franchises in the league, only being in existence for one and two years respectively.
For teams protecting only one goaltender, there was no experience requirement for those left unprotected. For teams protecting two goaltenders, each goaltender left unprotected must have appeared in either 10 NHL games in the 1999–2000 season or 25 games in the 1998–99 season and 1999–2000 seasons combined. A goaltender had to be in net for at least 31 minutes in each game for the game to be counted against these totals.
At least one defenceman left unprotected by each team had to have appeared in at least 40 games in the 1999–2000 season or 70 games in the 1998–99 season and 1999–2000 seasons combined. At least two forwards left unprotected by each team had to have met the same requirements.
52 players were chosen in the draft, two from each participating franchise. Only one goaltender or one defenseman could be selected from each franchise. Both the Blue Jackets and the Wild were to use their first 24 selections on three goaltenders, eight defensemen, and thirteen forwards. The final two picks for each team could be any position.”
What is not included in the rules from Wikipedia, are factors that excluded certain players from the draft (https://groups.googl...ild/HhMC1-4oqvU):
“Exempt from the Expansion Draft are (i) all first and second-year pros and
(ii) unsigned draft choices (except unsigned draft choices drafted from
European clubs in the 1996 Entry Draft or before and who remain unsigned).”
Based on these, that would mean that all of the Red Wings unsigned draft picks (mostly from 2013 and 2014 drafts, along with any unsigned college level players from previous drafts) along with:
G: Coreau, Paterson
D: Backman, Hicketts, Jensen, Marchenko, Nedomlel, Ouellet, Sproul
F: Athanasiou, Bertuzzi, Campbell, Frk, Mantha, Nastasiuk, Tvrdon
Noticeably absent are Teemu Pulkkinen and Tomas Nosek. Here is my logic behind this:
-For the sake of contract and waivers, the league already views Pulkkinen as a “3rd year pro”. Even though he has only been in GR for two full seasons, the first year of his entry level deal was 2012-13, where the Red Wings assigned him back to his Finnish pro team rather than GR. That season counted against his waiver exemption, therefore I’m assuming it will count here.
-Nosek is a case that would not have been possible in the ’98-2000 expansion drafts. Before the 2005 CBA, all European players HAD to be drafted. Afterwards, the rules were changed and non-NA players fell under the same draft requirements as NA players, in that they were no longer required to be drafted after they turned 20 by a certain date, and could be freely signed by any NHL team, basically like a UFA (ie Ville Leino, Gustavsson, Brunnstrom). I’m not really sure how the league will view Nosek. By the June 2015 date of the “theoretical” draft, he will 23 with one year of NA pro experience and two years pro level in Europe. I’m going to assume that the league will count non-NHL contracted “pro-level” experience (AHL, ECHL, KHL, SML, SEL etc…) under the “first and second year pro” for undrafted players over a certain age. For this draft, we’ll make it 23.
-I’m not sure how they worked in the previous expansion drafts, but I’m going to say that teams will have no choice but to protect players that have an active “No MOVEMENT Clause”. I would think that the NHLPA would raise a stink about these players moving to the expansion club, when their contracts were signed under the pre-tense that they could not be traded or waived without their consent. However, a player with a “No TRADE Clause”, can be left unprotected, since their clause only protects them from a trade. The expansion draft is a lot like waivers, which a team can still place a player with a NTC on without consent. Therefore, the Red Wings would have to include Pavel Datsyuk, Jimmy Howard and Stephen Weiss on their protected list.
-Not that it matters much, but I’m also going to assume that Adam Almquist comes into play as well. The rights to experienced unsigned European prospects were subject to availability in the previous expansion drafts. Since the Red Wings will hold onto Almquists NHL rights until July 1, 2016, and has 3+ years of “pro” experience, he will be subject to availability.
-Not that it really matters in the sake of protecting players, but I'm guessing the league will probably want the expansion team to select a combination of players with contracts that will have them operate above the salary floor atleast until free agency begins July 1, 2015.
So basically, here’s the game:
Pick a format: (1G 5D 9F) or (2G 3D 7F), or do both. Then decide which players to protect/not, remembering that:
-NMC Players have to be protected (Datsyuk, Howard and Weiss)
-If you protect 2 goalies, one that has played atleast 10 games in 2014-15 or 25 in 13-14 and 14-15 combined has to be left unprotected (Basically Gustavsson is your only option…)
-In either format, atleast one Dman and two forwards left unprotected have to have atleast 40 games of experience in 2014-15 or 70 in 13-14 and 14-15 combined. (Nearly impossible not to…)
Players subject to availability:
G: Gustavsson, Howard (NMC), McCollum, Mrazek
D: Almquist, Dekeyser, Ericsson, Kindl, Kronwall, Lashoff, Quincey, Smith
F: Abdelkader, Andersson, Aubry, Callahan, Cleary, Datsyuk (NMC), Ferraro, Franzen, Glendening, Helm, Jurco, Miele, Miller, Nosek, Porter, Pulkkinen, Sheahan, Tatar, Weiss (NMC), Zetterberg
With the proposed scenario (Howard having to be protected because of NMC), a lot of who the Red Wings protect rides on how much they value Mrazek. Do they think he’s such a large part of the future that they can afford to lose a current core player to keep him, or do they leave him unprotected to not lose a core player?
Here’s my thoughts for both:
1-5-9 Format Protected
D: DeKeyser, Ericsson, Kindl, Kronwall, Smith
F: Abdelkader, Datsyuk, Helm, Jurco, Nyquist, Sheahan, Tatar, Weiss, Zetterberg
2-3-7 Format Protected
G: Howard, Mrazek
D: DeKeyser, Kronwall, Smith
F: Datsyuk, Jurco, Nyquist, Sheahan, Tatar, Weiss, Zetterberg
For the record, I didn’t leave Franzen unprotected because I don’t want him, I did it because I’m assuming the building expansion team wouldn’t want to take on an aging player with five years left on his contract and would find more value in taking Mrazek or one of the Wings Dmen (obviously depending on format…)
How would everyone else do it?