All talk, few trades before NHL's expansion roster freeze

Kristi Paul
June 19, 2017

The NHL's roster freeze kicks in today at 3pm ET, upon which teams can not finalize trades with one another until June 22 at 8am ET.

The NHL Expansion Draft will be held Wednesday, June 21.

"People have identified people on other clubs they'd like to have", McPhee said.

Clubs have two options for players they wish to protect in the expansion draft.

Fleury was left unprotected by the Pittsburgh Penguins after he agreed to waive the no-movement clause in his contract. There's also an "expansion draft signing moratorium" for everyone except Vegas, but the trade freeze is most likely to generate some interesting moments today.

"It was a rigid market", Treliving said.

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.

Asked how he might resolve the goaltending situation, Francis said, "You can always resolve it if you give up a high draft pick". He is an arbitration-eligible restricted free agent, was a (somewhat) healthy scratch in two straight elimination playoff games, and Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson is expected to be in the fold for a full-time National Hockey League spot next season. "It's a possibility. But trades are way easier talked about than to do".

The Calgary Flames roster is filled with quality forwards, but not everyone can be protected in the upcoming expansion draft. The Senators don't want to lose Phaneuf, but had he waived it they would have been able to protect defenceman Marc Methot. Not when his contract drops to a more-than-friendly $4 million next season. By signing Ben Smith to a $650,000 deal, he becomes eligible for the draft.

Zdeno Chara: The lone B's defenseman with a no-movement clause, the Bruins are not letting their captain walk for nothing. Only Zibanejad now is unsigned, and it seems that general manager Jeff Gorton might be looking toward more than a bridge deal with the 24-year-old center. Florida's purest scorer was one of just 26 players league-wide to hit 30 goals last season - and he will only earn $750,000 next season. This might be more significant than some others if Nashville is indeed running into a brick wall trying to sway McPhee from taking someone of Neal's stature, especially since the deadline to trade with teams other than the Golden Knights already passed.

Vatanen, who will miss the start of the season after having shoulder surgery, and Josh Manson were the odd men out in Anaheim, because the Ducks couldn't protect their all their talented core of defensemen. If Vegas is looking for players who could get them future assets, Beagle is a tempting choice.

Any player with two years or less of professional experience (NHL or AHL) is exempt from the expansion draft. If they have any intention of competing next season - and they do - they'll need a puck-mover on the back end.

Eric's Take: The obvious targets for McPhee would be Troy Brouwer, Matt Stajan or defenceman Brett Kulak.

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