Published: Mon, June 19, 2017
Sport | By Ellis Neal

Flyers Protected Players List Released Ahead of Expansion Draft

Flyers Protected Players List Released Ahead of Expansion Draft

Vegas Golden Knights general manager George McPhee had difficulty containing his excitement in anticipation of the NHL's expansion draft list being released.

The Blues have elected to protect Jake Allen, Patrik Berglund, Jay Bouwmeester, Joel Edmundson, Alex Pietrangelo, Ryan Reaves, Jaden Schwartz, Paul Stastny, Vladimir Sobotka, Alexander Steen and Vladimir Tarasenko. The incoming Vegas Golden Knights can begin to take shape now that they know who's available to them.

This was also a no-brainer, as Crawford has a no-movement clause on his contract.

Each team's protection list was made public by the National Hockey League today at 10:30 a.m. Marchessault had a breakout season in 2016-17 with 30 goals and was considered a player to watch going into next year. Aside from Fleury, other goalies available are Florida's Roberto Luongo, Detroit's Petr Mrazek and Philadelphia's Michal Neuvirth.

Regarding Abdelkader, who's 30 years old and signed through 2023 with a cap hit of $4.25 million, it's likely the Wings valued his grit and leadership.

The unprotected list includes players eligible to become restricted or unrestricted free agents.

Sunday, June 18 Deadline for Central Registry to approve and simultaneously distribute the Protection Lists to all NHL Clubs (including the Expansion Club) and the NHLPA (10 a.m. ET). The league's annual awards ceremonies will be held in Las Vegas on Wednesday and then teams will gather in Chicago for the two-day entry draft, which opens on Friday.

This applies mostly if someone like Kevin Shattenkirk somehow lands on an unprotected list due to his impending free agency, but it makes for a potentially big decision for the Golden Knights entering Year One of the franchise.

There's also nothing barring Vegas from making deals to select a player and trade him to another team.

After that there will be a frenzy of pre-draft trades and the usual flurry of activity just ahead of the July 1 opening of free agency, and numerous names we've heard floated over the last couple of weeks in trade rumors will likely be moved.

Aside from the Knights, the other 30 teams are now under a roster freeze until Thursday.

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