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Expansion Chatter: Which Senators Would You Protect?

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A hypothetical exercise based on yesterday's report that the NHL is ready to expand

Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sport

Late yesterday news broke that the NHL is ready to expand to several new markets, including Las Vegas. Putting aside issues of gambling and sports, many fans around the league began salivating at the (hypothetical) opportunity to dump players on these new clubs and remake their team's lineup.

Inspired by similar posts on Stanley Cup of Chowder and Winging It In Motown, let's talk protecting players in an expansion draft. In my family, we played a hockey management/simulation board game when we were kids called Face Off. While the game had both positive and negative qualities, one of the things you could do was protect your player from "force trades" (best square on the board) and similar roster moves by placing a green clip on a player card. Today, you get to decide which players get that green clip.

The Rules

The rules are simple and are based on the last time the NHL had an expansion draft (2000). You can protect the following:

1 Goalie

5 Defensemen

9 Forwards

OR

2 Goalies

3 Defensemen

7 Forwards

Usually the rules are a bit more complicated, with games played in previous seasons taken into account, but for the ease of the exercise, we'll stick to player position caps. To simplify the process, you don't have to protect players who are waiver exempt (everyone gets Curtis Lazar without having to protect him). 14 years ago, the Senators lost Joe Juneau and Kevin Dineen to the Minnesota Wild and Columbus Blue Jackets.

Who would you protect? Who would you leave available? Give us your protected and unprotected lists in the comments!