The Washington Capitals have turned in their protected lists for this upcoming week’s expansion draft by the Seattle Kraken. There are a lot of big names available, and Seattle has some very big and wrinkly brains making decisions for them. With all that in mind, let us now mentally prepare to lose one of our nephews. I’ve arranged them into tiers based on how likely each player is to be selected. That way you can prioritize your despair.
Also, I am once again obligated to remind you that the last expansion draft was brutal on the Capitals, taking away an unappreciated, talented young defender and leaving the team barely able to win the Stanley Cup against him the next season.
Jensen is the better player and comes cheaper: $2.5 million for two years. But Dillon despite his higher price tag/longer term (three years at $3.9 million), and negligible offense, is a PNW boy, having played for the Seattle Thunderbirds as a youngster.
While Dillon plays a physical style and a narrative appeal, Jensen’s got more value as a pace-slowing defender— especially to savvy analysts like Seattle’s got.
These players are all appealing but are being kept out of the top tier for some reason. I called Sheary a “pistol” in his season review, but his usage by the Caps last season might be a red flag to Seattle. Schultz was a bit of an analytics darling a few years ago, but that’s over– he got progressively worse as the shortened season went on. And then there’s sweet Vitek Vanecek, who’s a fine goalie but has not proven himself to be exceptional in anyway — especially compared to some of the big names available this summer.
Hey, remember these guys? I could imagine a world in which Seattle has a vision for Hagelin as a facilitator for top-six scoring, despite his current usage. Dowd’s showing in a bunch of metrics is poor — Hathaway’s too — but I suspect Seattle is smart enough to see how brutal their assignments were this season. While Hathaway might have a slight edge in quantitative stuff, Dowd should have more appeal from a team chemistry perspective.
Hey. Here are some guys. Check ’em out. They are not going to be drafted by Seattle.
Unless Brian MacLellan is up to something. Check for the shifty eyes.
Anyway, Carr’s not even playing in North America anymore, the shine is off of AJF, and a bunch of the other fellas here have had trouble making any noise at the NHL level at all.
This is the tier for Michal Kempny, who last played NHL hockey on August 14, 2020. I’m not a doctor, but I believe the diagnosis was “exploded legs.” When he did a conditioning stint in Hershey, he got injured by an ice scraper. He’s got one year left at $2.5 million, and I have no idea if he’ll play in it.
It’s not gonna happen.
Anderson? I love him, but there are a dozen better options in net for Seattle.
Chara? He hasn’t even decided if he’ll play next season or not. No reason to burn a a pick on him yet.
Ovechkin? Schyeah right.
So, who goes?
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