Morning Free Association: One Step Closer to Expansion

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On Saturday, 30 NHL teams had to submit their protection lists for the Seattle Expansion Draft. Why 30? Because Vegas, the most recent franchise, is exempt from this expansion. The Boston Bruins being one of the oldest teams in the league is not exempt and as expected, they submitted their list. All but one of the choices are not surprises.

Early in the process, Don Sweeney stated that he would use the 7-3-1 option: 7 forwards, 3 defensemen, and 1 goaltender. Any player with a NMC or NTC had to be protected. Any UFAs or RFAS do not have to be protected because they aren’t signed nor are their rights assigned to the team although RFAs can protected. So Taylor Hall, David Krejci, and Tuukka Rask aren’t protected due to not being signed and Nick Ritchie, an unsigned RFA, is not protected. Essentially, Don Sweeney purposely arranged his contracts so that he didn’t have to make too many difficult choices in whom to protect.

Forwards: Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, David Pastrnak, Charlie Coyle, Craig Smith, Jake DeBrusk, Trent Frederic

Defensemen: Charlie McAvoy, Matt Grzelcyk, Brandon Carlo

Goaltender: Daniel Vladar

Returning to above, why is Trent Frederic on the list while Nick Ritchie isn’t? It could be just a matter of signed vs unsigned. Or it could be a matter of knowing that Nick Ritchie had a career year with the Bruins, even being voted as the current Seventh Player winner, and not wanting to negotiate the contract that deserves. In short, Ritchie has gotten more expensive than he’s probably worth.

How about Jake DeBrusk? Why is he protected? Because they don’t want to give up that asset. Regardless of how we fans feel about his play, DeBrusk is worth something. He had just signed a new deal prior to the return to play in 2021 and has one more year at $3.65 million. If the Bruins have given up on him, Sweeney would rather get something for that asset instead of just given it away for nothing.

So who is likely to be taken from the Bruins? The consensus is that it’s another defenseman like last time: Connor Clifton. Clifton is signed to a very friendly $1 million for the next two years. Even is Seattle wanted to flip him, his skills are good enough that another team would gladly take him.

Tomorrow, we’ll dive into the other unprotected players around the league. The expansion draft is on Wednesday night at 8pm.

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Satan 81's Sister
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Satan 81's Sister

Morning all. Monday again already?! Weekends need more weekend!

The London Bear
Member
The London Bear

Morning

So, if I understand correctly, Kraken can’t take Hall, Krejci or Tuukka as their selection has to be a Boston player, and at present those three aren’t officially Boston players. Is that about the size of it? And they can’t sign them either because free agency hasn’t opened yet?

Well, I hope you had a better weekend than I did. Friday night my mom and her partner tested positive for Covid. They seem ok. Mild symptoms but they’re both double jabbed. And they do have to isolate for ten days. Leah was supposed to be going to stay with them later this week.

Then yesterday one of Leah’s classmates tested positive, which means the whole class has to isolate. And this is supposed to be their penultimate day – not just of the year but at that school. They had loads of Leavers stuff planned which is now probably not gonna happen.

There’s a potential get-out in that today the rules are changing in Britain which means only the child who tests positive has to isolate, but they are off school today and a decision on tomorrow is expected this afternoon. Ughhh, nothing ever goes straightforward does it?!

The London Bear
Member
The London Bear

Ah some good news – they CAN go back to school tomorrow. That’s a relief.

Satan 81's Sister
Editor
Satan 81's Sister

Glad Leah can celebrate with her classmates! I feel bad for students during the pandemic and not being able to celebrate the milestones properly.

Best of health to your mom and her partner. Hope they get well quickly!

The London Bear
Member
The London Bear

Thank you. They seem to be over the worst, touch wood.

I feel really bad for the kid who tested positive. He’s still gonna have to miss out but for a while it looked like he would be the reason all his classmates would have to. That would’ve been pretty rough for an 11 year old, and I bet it has happened at other schools.

IntentionallyWidenberg
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IntentionallyWidenberg

Yuck. Glad your folks have their shots – supposedly it keeps them out of the hospital if they catch it. Hoping for the best for all concerned.

The London Bear
Member
The London Bear

It’s absolutely rife here. I don’t how it works over your way, but here we have an app which notifies you if you have been in contact with someone who tests positive. Then you have to isolate.

Trouble is there are now so many people isolating after being “pinged” by the app that some businesses have had to close due to lack of available staff!

Thankfully the hospitalisation and death rates have stayed relatively low – as you say the vaccines have helped that – but this is prime conditions for variants. Scary times.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Good morning!
I hope the Bruins do not lose Cliffy. Love his style of play. Sweenius has his reasons, we can be sure. The Bs will lose a good player, that’s going to happen.
Got back in a kayak Saturday. Ran the Dryway with my best buddy from CT. A couple flips, but no head contact. Neck still a bit sore, headache gone. Rivers are juicy right now. This map shows streamflow across the nation. black dots matter!

The London Bear
Member
The London Bear

black dots matter!

Looks like you couldn’t live in a better place!

IntentionallyWidenberg
Admin
IntentionallyWidenberg

I just don’t see any situation where the Kraken don’t take Cliffy. He’s like the only promising asset out there. Unless Sweeney bribes them with picks or prospects or something.