NHL expansion to be decided on June 22

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman just announced at his annual address prior to Game One of the Stanley Cup Finals that league expansion will be decided at the Board of Governor’s meeting on June 22. The Board of Governors will choose one of the following options:

  • No expansion
  • Defer the decision on expansion for one year
  • One-team expansion
  • Two-team expansion
  • Presumably Bettman will be tight-lipped until the Board of Governors makes their decision. Until then, speculate away!

    Satan81

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    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    League has run expansion draft models and Bill Daly says resulting rosters would be competitive for a playoff spot.

    — Craig Custance (@CraigCustance) May 30, 2016

    I bet there are a few Columbus and former Atlanta fans that are pretty put out about this, actually

    IntentionallyWidenberg
    Admin

    Appeasing small-market fans isn’t worth failing to learn from a mistake. It’s definitely a good idea to encourage the expansion teams to be competitive. (and thus, financially viable) What will really create hard feelings is when the LasVegas SlotMachine steals Steven Stamkos from Toronto/Tampa, or more likely an important complimentary piece from a bubble team like Boston/Detroit/Philly, setting them back a couple of years on their playoff aspirations.

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    Oh I agree, this is good news. Just commenting that fans of teams that got screwed under past expansion draft systems won’t be thrilled (I already know folks at the Columbus SBN site are bitter that a new expansion will get better players than they will. Although they should be angrier that they will be forced to protect Clarkson Tyutin Dubinsky Foligno and Hartnell over better, younger players)

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    hrmm

    The expansion draft rules disclosed at the March GMs Meeting have "developed over time," per Bill Daly. No word on exact changes.

    — Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) May 30, 2016

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    Bill Daly said that there will be no guaranteed 1st overall pick for an expansion team. Will be in lottery

    — Greg Wyshynski (@wyshynski) May 30, 2016

    Thats a little rough, but one assumes any expansion teams have heavier odds.

    IntentionallyWidenberg
    Admin

    The lottery makes sense – it allows for fairness between two expansion teams (if there are two), so they can both get screwed by Edmonton, equally.

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    Oooh, changes to the worst rule in hockey:

    "Minor" potential rule change: right now, puck over glass penalty determined by where your feet are, not puck. Proposal is to reverse that

    — Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) May 30, 2016

    That's so a player who has puck in neutral zone (but skates in own zone) does not get a penalty

    — Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) May 30, 2016

    But puck over glass still is the dumb

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    Oh, this is pretty big:

    One change to proposed expansion draft is there's no longer a minimum amount of cap space that needs to be exposed.

    — Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) May 30, 2016

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    So, I’ve been trying to reckon my way through the NMC rule for a possible expansion draft. We know that NMC’s must be protected (sucks to Columbus)- but there are a couple cases that I’m not sure about.

    1) Guys who have an NMC now that expires after the 16-17 season, like Tuukka (as an example, not suggesting things), as that NMC wouldn’t actually expire until July 1, 2017- when the rules as we know them were announced, some sources said he counted, others not. Mostly because I think nobody knows. (my guess is yes, they are required to be protected).

    2) (and this one is more intriguing)- Guys who have an NMC, but their contract expires after next season (e.g., Jarome Iginla). Assuming an expansion draft would be in June, probably between the end of the SCF and the 2017 Entry Draft, that contract with its NMC for the then 39-year-old and at least even odds to retire Iggy is still valid, and ergo, subject to the protection rules. Now, were he retiring and annouced as much prior to the Expansion draft, the problem would go away (if he filed his papers between the end of the season and the draft), but if he isn’t, even if he doesn’t plan on resigning with the Avs (or especially), the Avs may be fucked. It will be interesting to see how the NHL and NHLPA handle oddities like that case.

    IntentionallyWidenberg
    Admin

    One would assume that players under contract are players under contract, even if only for 3 weeks. Also that most such players would have their contracts extended by that time.

    I am curious how many contracts are left unextended by teams wanting to manage the uncertainty of the expansion draft. I can see arguments for being more agressive in signing players, and arguments for letting things play out before committing to a strategy for the following entry draft/season.

    Also curious to see if NMCs are harder to come by this season, in order to increase team flexibility in dealing with the expansion draft rules.

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    players that fit in this expiring contract with an NMC category: Iginla, Wideman, Sharp, Datsyuk (oh it would be hilarious if the Wings had to protect the already retired Datsyuk), Umberger (in the unlikely event hes not bought out this summer), Jumbo, Marleau, Bishop.

    An interesting mix. Iggy and Datsyuk (not counting Umberger) are the only ones with >/=50% chance of not coming back I reckon, so hmmm.

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    Probably relevant here

    My guess is there are layers/variances to the NMC/NTC component of expansion draft so still some unknowns

    — Pierre LeBrun (@Real_ESPNLeBrun) May 30, 2016

    carvinbass18
    Editor

    Please please please no 1 team expansion. That style of logistics would just drive me nuts. Also, should there be 2 teams, I hope it doesn’t change the playoff format.

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    Assuming they did expand by two teams, I think that is a bigger risk to bugger the playoff format, but adding yet another team in the east. I can’t imagine the NHL wants to have an eastern time zone team play in the west again. Nobody in Seattle having their shit together really fucked over the league here.

    carvinbass18
    Editor

    The fans in Seattle really want a team too don’t they?

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    Well- they want the Sonics, but it seems like a market ripe for an NHL franchise. Much more so than Las Vegas, really.

    carvinbass18
    Editor

    Well, if you put a team in Seattle you can expand that market down to Portland as well

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    Natural geographic rivalry with the Nucks too- Sounders and Whitecaps have a decent rivalry in MLS to my understanding

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    Whomp Whomp

    Bettman on expansion discussions in last few weeks "I've spoken to Bill Foley (Vegas), I've spoken to Quebecor, I've not spoken to Seattle"

    — Dennis Bernstein (@DennisTFP) May 30, 2016

    IntentionallyWidenberg
    Admin

    The last time news came about, it sounded like LV was nearly as good as done, but QC was a long shot. And Seattle was right out.

    DrHandgrenaid
    Editor

    Ad revenue is also a concern (unlike Montreal, its a mono-French market)

    carvinbass18
    Editor

    ugh jerks GET WITH IT. Co-brand with the Sounders. Create jerseys that use the same color scheme. IT WILL BE BRILLIANT

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