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Tag: Expansion Draft (Page 1 of 5)

“Good Chance A Third Of The Roster Won’t Be There In October”

Now it’s no secret you come to SinBin.vegas because you’re sure there’s no one on the Internet more informed about the Golden Knights than us. Knowing this, you take everything we say as Gospel. You then spend much of your day preaching what you read and hear on this site to the rest of the valley spreading our wealth of knowledge and making Las Vegas a better place. But… sometimes it’s nice to hear someone much more famous than us say exactly what we’ve been spewing for the past two years to remind you of why you still come here and read this s**t these articles.

Well that someone else just so happens to be the venerable, Pierre LeBrun. In an interview with WGR 550 in Buffalo, which I highly recommend you listen to in its entirety (or at least start at 8:30 when they talk about Vegas), LeBrun spits some hot fire about the upcoming Expansion Draft. And as it turns out, especially if you listen to the SinBin.vegas Podcast, it’s stuff you’ve probably heard before.

Here’s the reality, Vegas is not necessarily going to take the best player available and that’s where everything gets skewed. The reality is, George McPhee is going to do a number of side deals. (Don’t take player X in return for an asset) -Pierre LeBrun

LeBrun wouldn’t put a number on how many he expects to come out of the Expansion Draft, but did mention on multiple occasions that McPhee’s phone has been lit up in the recent weeks and will likely stay that way for the next month.

Once you see the roster remember something else, there’s a real good chance maybe up to a third of those players you see on that list on June 21st aren’t even with Vegas come October. There’s going to be a lot of flipping I think. -LeBrun

And…

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Buyouts: Expansion Draft Antidote For NMCs

The list of players with No Movement Clauses (NMCs) is 66 deep according to a league memo sent out in November. On that list there are names such as Sidney Crosby, Patrick Kane, and Carey Price. Those guys, along with about 50 others were going to be protected anyway, so the automatic protection rule for the Expansion Draft is no concern for their respective GM’s. But names like Kevin Bieksa, Scott Hartnell, Francois Beauchemin, Ryan Callahan, Jason Pominville, Dan Girardi, and Dion Phaneuf may be a bit of a different story.

In a perfect world for GMs in Anaheim, Columbus, Colorado, Tampa Bay, Minnesota, New York, and Ottawa, each of these players would simply waive their NMC giving the team the freedom it needs to protect the best nine or 11 players possible, whether it includes those guys or not. It doesn’t work that way though.

No Movement Clauses were put into contracts for a reason. Usually, as the name suggests, so the player won’t have to worry about moving. We are always here to tell people how amazing Vegas is, but in this case, it would be best if players with NMCs think this place is some ****hole in the desert. Mandatory protection is the friend of George McPhee and the enemy of every GM with a player holding an NMC who may have otherwise wanted to expose him.

Unfortunately for Vegas, there’s a work around. It’s called a buyout. NHL franchises can essentially terminate the contract of a player by buying them out for 2/3 of the remaining salary. There are a bunch of rules about buyouts, if you are interested, you can read here, but for the sake of this story, and the Expansion Draft they’re irrelevant.

One name on the list jumps off the page as a possible buyout candidate and he currently resides in Colorado.

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Did Ben Bishop Just Reveal McPhee’s Strategy?

Ben Bishop, the stud goalie who started the season in Tampa Bay, was traded to Los Angeles in February, then had his negotiating rights traded to Dallas and eventually signed a long term deal with Stars, said in an interview that Vegas is thinking of going “younger and in a different direction.”

I think there was some talk of it from what I understood I didn’t think it was an option. I’m obviously not sure what they are going to do. From what I head they were kind of thinking maybe younger and in a different direction. -Ben Bishop in interview with Hockey Central at Noon

Alright, there’s a lot of questions on this one, and at the moment, I don’t have any of the answers, but let’s try to flush this out as best we can here.

Let’s start with the obvious. How does he know this? And… why does he know this?

Follow the timeline, Bishop entered this season on an expiring contract (set to become a UFA). Then, he goes to LA to close out the year. After the season ends, his right are traded to Dallas, because only the team holding his rights can negotiate with him, where he signed, nearly two months before July 1st, when he would have actually hit the open market.

George McPhee never had a chance to talk to him. He couldn’t even say his name without it being tampering, still can’t. Yet Bishop just spilled an interesting note about what the Golden Knights are thinking of doing for the future.

Who told him this? And could he possibly be right?

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The Trades Are A Comin’, In About Two Weeks

The boys are back in town as the Golden Knights are set to go through yet another mock draft as they finalize their preparations for the big (three) days at the end of June. In an interview with TSN 690 in Montreal, GM George McPhee said this week the amateur scouts were here and the focus was on the Entry Draft, but it’s ready to shift to the other draft soon, and with that finally comes some trades.

Monday we jump right back on to the pro side and do our mock drafts and in the mean time we are fielding calls from teams that have ideas and thoughts and things they’d like to do and people they’d like to protect. So we take all that information in and it’ll be discussed next week during the mock draft and then after that when we’ve analyzed teams one more time at the end of next week we will start calling teams back to see if we can start doing some deals. -George McPhee

With just four teams left in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the muddy universe of players is starting to clear itself up in terms of protection and exposure in the Expansion Draft. With elimination, most teams have turned their attention to the elephant in the room and have gotten on the horn with McPhee to figure out what may work out best for both sides.

However, to this point McPhee and his staff have only been on the receiving end of the calls, and by the sounds of it, it’s been a lot more listening than talking. But after this coming mock draft, it appears that’s set to change.

If there’s something there that’s better than draft picks then we would claim that. If we see something on a club that we like but we can get the same thing from another club and we can get draft picks out of this club, then we will take draft picks. We are gonna have to do a little bit of everything, we are gonna need some youth, some experience, some skill, some speed, some grit, some draft picks. -McPhee

We are getting close people. The grill is almost preheated, now it’s time to take these GMs and stick their feet right on the hot coals. McPhee may have been buddy-buddy with these guys since being hired in July, but when the phone calls turn outbound from Vegas, he’ll be looking to suck every last asset out of every one of the 30 teams.

Now for the unfortunate part. Where’s Uncle Sour at? He still bitching about Ovi? Oh well, I’ll just tell you. Even if/when these deals are made, we won’t hear about them until June 21st. Sucks.

But, let’s put a positive spin on it. Keeping the deals secret continues to help the Golden Knights. If these trades were made public, it would start to (sorry about the upcoming Vegas pun) tip McPhee’s hand.

Only one man will have all of the information, and that man just so happens to call The Creator his boss.

The Window As An Asset

If there’s been one constant in the Expansion Draft strategy talk throughout the last 11 months it’s the idea of gathering assets. Whether it’s simply selecting a good player, or making a trade to pick a player (or not pick a player) in exchange for draft picks and/or prospects, George McPhee will have the league by the balls for a three day period, and he’s got to make the most of it.

There are tradeable assets all over the Expansion Draft, it’s just a matter of finding the right partner to dance with. Sometimes it’ll be something as obvious as taking a big contract off the hands of a contending team, but other times McPhee and other GMs will have to get creative.

That’s right, the free agent negotiation window that’s still up for debate as to how long it will last… it’s an asset in it of itself.

The Golden Knights have to be a bit careful with these types of deals because they are forbid from buying out any player until the end of the first season. If someone goes back on a deal, things could get really hairy in a hurry. 

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UFA And RFA Rules Still Not Finalized For Expansion Draft

In 39 days the Vegas Golden Knights will be on the Expansion Draft clock, having 72 hours to make their 30 selections and submit them to the league. The rules of this draft were made public on June 22nd of last year, the day Vegas was granted the franchise, yet still, 11 months later, there’s still confusion over exactly how this is all going to go down.

We get this question a lot so let me quickly summarize how this works, then we will get to what LeBrun is talking about. Hopefully by know you know teams can protect either seven forwards, three defensemen, and a goalie OR eight skaters and a goalie.  Among those nine or 11 can be restricted free agents (RFAs) or unrestricted free agents. If a player is an RFA it means other teams will have the opportunity to offer a player a contract and his current team can then match that contract to keep the player, or let him sign with the other team. Therefore, if an RFA is left exposed in the Expansion Draft, and Vegas selects the player, his current team cannot match the offer. In regards to unrestricted free agents (free to sign with any team on July 1st) there’s only one reason to protect them for the Expansion Draft, to keep Vegas from being able to negotiate with the player before July 1st. It’s not a very good reason, and no one is likely to do it, so expect many RFAs to be protected, and almost no UFAs to be protected. (Any questions? Read this. Still don’t get it, ask in the comments)

Now, to what Pierre is talking about. There’s going to be a moment, at some point in between June 17th and June 20th when free agents are no longer available to the Golden Knights.

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McPhee Still Expecting Lots Of Player Movement Before Expansion Draft

The Expansion Draft is a little less than two months away. George McPhee are beyond prepared, but seem a bit on edge about what may happen in those 53 days before they are finally on the expansion clock.

McPhee has been talking about a redistribution of the player pool following the season that will shake up the protection lists of many players. In a recent interview with Leafs Lunch on TSN 1050 McPhee went out of his way multiple times to mention the possibility of seeing his roster change from their mock drafts as teams gear up for the draft.

Early in the season (our mock draft rosters) looked really good. (Now) It’s not bad, which I guess is a real neutral Canadian way to say things. I don’t mind it, I’m happy with what it’s looked liked recently and can only hope it looks like that when we’re done. -George McPhee

With eight teams still competing for the Stanley Cup, and very little movement on the NHL transaction list, McPhee has that “calm before the storm” feel to him, and he definitely appears concerned about what may happen before he ever gets his hands on the protection lists.

You said there’s a good chance of real good goaltenders being available, that’s a good way to express it. It looks that way now, but there could be a big redistribution of players in the weeks before the Expansion Draft. So we’ll have to see what it looks like when all the dust settles. -McPhee

The highest profile moves are likely to come at that goalie position. Everyone is afraid of losing something valuable for nothing, so most teams are going to try and be proactive by moving their assets before the Expansion Draft. It’s the reason McPhee has made it so clear in interviews with AP, the RJ, TSN, and many more that he’s more than willing to entertain any offers.

He wants a skin in the game rather than being left on the sideline. His recent comments about player redistribution feel a bit almost scared rather than what felt like he was accepting the inevitable when he talked about it a few months ago. The comment about the mock draft rosters getting worse and worse appears to have really hit home, and the reality of what his Expansion Draft roster might look like after the last round of shuffling could be a frightening sight, and it’s only getting worse.

It’ll be interesting to see and hear what McPhee looks like a few days before the draft and compare it to what he sounded like today. There’s certainly a level of concern, and more than anything, like an 11th grader preparing for the SAT, I think he’s just ready to get this thing over with.

**Here’s the full interview with Leafs Lunch on TSN 1050.**

Expansion Draft Reveal Combined With NHL Awards At T-Mobile Arena

UPDATE 2 (10:47 AM 4/27/17) : A team source tells us tickets will go on sale for season ticket holders on Friday April 28th at 10 AM. Prices will start at $15 per ticket.

UPDATE (10:33 AM 4/19/17) : Per The Creator via email, ticket prices for the event will range from $20 in the upper deck to $40 in the best seats in the lower bowl. There will also be premium “floor seats” which are controlled by the NHL. They are expected to be priced in the $150-$300 range like previous Awards Shows.

Also, the team is working hard to ensure jerseys will be for sale at this event, but “it’s all being driven by Adidas and their timing.” It won’t be Vegas’ fault if they aren’t there for general sale on June 21st.

***

We’ve been reporting this for months now, but today the Golden Knights and the NHL finalized plans to combine the NHL Expansion Draft and the NHL Awards Show into one event at T-Mobile Arena.

The event will take place as expected on June 21st at 5PM PST and will be televised on NBCSN and SportsNet.

“We are thrilled to be in Las Vegas again for the NHL Awards. To be able to pair this perennial show with the excitement of the Expansion Draft for the Vegas Golden Knights is a unique event that we think our fans will greatly enjoy. -Steve Mayer, NHL Chief Content Officer and Executive Vice President

To recap, the protection lists are due to the NHL on Saturday June 17th at 2PM PST. They are expected to be make the lists public either Saturday night or Sunday morning. The Golden Knights must finalize their 30 selections by June 20th at 2PM PST. Then, at 27 hours later at T-Mobile Arena, we’ll learn fill in the blanks of the names we don’t find out prior to the big reveal.

During this 72 hour period, Vegas has exclusive negotiating rights with all unrestricted free agents (UFAs) and can make qualifying offers to restricted free agents (RFAs).

June 21 will be an incredible day for the city of Las Vegas and our fans. The anticipation around the Expansion Draft has been building for months and that excitement will continue to grow as we get closer to Draft Day. By combining the draft with the NHL Awards, Golden Knights fans will get to experience a monumental day in our team’s history while enjoying one of the premier NHL events that features the game’s biggest stars. -The Creator

Tickets will be available for season ticket holders to this event “in the coming days” and are NOT free like originally expected when the Expansion Draft and NHL Awards were separate. The arena will likely be set up like a concert, so approximately 15,000-20,000 tickets should be available. Prices have yet to be announced. Brace for impact though cause the NHL Awards Show tickets have ranged from around $100-350 or so a piece. Obviously these will be cheaper due to it being in an arena rather than a theatre, but don’t expect them to be cheap.

Tickets will go on sale to the general public at 10AM PST on May 3rd.

This is also the event in which the team is expected to unveil their home and away jerseys.

Expansion Draft Protection Lists Will Be Made Public

UPDATE (9:55 AM 3/30/17) – We’re being told that plans on the NHL Awards Show are still fluid, which will impact the Golden Knights Expansion Draft reveal.

Multiple sources indicated weeks ago that The Park Theatre would be used to house the Awards with T-Mobile Arena being the home to the Expansion Draft reveal. Now, it looks like they are considering putting both events together at T-Mobile. Nothing is confirmed on either the Awards or the Expansion reveal at this time.

If the Awards show coincides in the same building with the Expansion reveal, there will almost certainly be a ticket price to get in.

***

And just like that, the Expansion Draft protection list saga is over, and the good guys win.

Those lists are set to be submitted to the NHL by 2:00 P.M. PT on Saturday, June 17th. Vegas then has three days to get their 30 selections in, and they will then be revealed in a nationally televised, free to attend event at T-Mobile Arena on Wednesday June 21st.

The general managers spoke out against the lists being made public, and The Creator even said he prefers they remain secret until the reveal on the 21st.

After a lot of internal discussion following the General Managers meeting, we determined it would be best to disclose those lists publicly. One of our guiding principles from the start of this process was to prioritize transparency, and certainly here, keeping the lists private would not have promoted that particular objective. –Bill Daly, NHL Deputy Commissioner to NHL.com

But cooler heads prevailed and the world will get to play “armchair McPhee” and pick their 30 from the list of available players right along with the Vegas GM.

Man, June is going to be fun.

The Creator Wants Protection Lists Kept Secret, He’s Wrong And Here’s Why

The visibility of the Expansion Draft protections lists is shaping up to be quite the war between the public and the powers that be in the NHL. The GMs made it rather clear at their meetings in Boca Raton, FL a few weeks ago that they had no interest in allowing the world to see what’s going on behind the scenes of their organization, and more importantly open them up to criticism on Expansion Draft errors.

That’s all makes sense, but as a member of the working hockey media, it’s rather difficult to feel too bad for 31 gentleman who each hold one of the most envious positions in the NHL and are compensated handsomely to do the job.

But now, our own front man has come out against making the lists public, and his reasoning is completely different than that of his top employee and McPhee’s 30 colleagues.

I’d rather not have them be public. I’d rather we know what each team has left unprotected and we make our picks and it’s a big surprise. I think there’s going to be a lot of leaks though. I found one thing about the NHL that … everyone talks. So what we do is we don’t tell anybody anything. I think the impact of us announcing the people we pick from our expansion draft picks – particularly if the list of unprotected people is not made public is more dramatic, it’ll be more of a surprise. –The Creator to Puck Daddy

Now he does have a point, there’s definitely a level of interest that could be gained by having the Expansion Draft reveal be this massive surprise, but it’s a short sighted way of looking at the situation.

If the lists are made public, there will be at least three full days of speculation in which the words ‘Golden Knights’ will be at the center of. The surprise may be bigger (I disagree, and will address that in a second), but it’s also shorter.

If we learned anything from the recent Presidential election it’s that being in the news is a good thing. Every day it was something else and you couldn’t surf a website, scroll a timeline, or watch a television program without hearing the word Trump. He dominated the talk and eventually parlayed it into becoming the most powerful man in the world.

Every media member, every blogger, every fan of the sport will toy with the lists with their mind constantly on one thing, “which of these guys is going to be a Golden Knight.” VGK will be trending for a week rather than an hour.

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