Welcome to the week of the 2021 NHL Expansion and Entry Drafts! We’ve got trades, protected lists are out, and there is so much drama to talk about. Let’s dive into the big stories from the last few days:
- Each NHL team has released their official list of players they’re protecting in the expansion draft. The only big surprise from the Sens’ end is that Dadonov is not protected. Austin Watson has his spot. Nikita Zaitsev was also protected over Josh Brown. You can check out all the protected lists here, and Sportsnet has a roundup of the most intriguing players left unprotected. Seattle could certainly do worse than Dylan DeMelo and Mark Giordano on their blueline./
- For subscribers to The Athletic, Ian Mendes ponders the likelihood of the Kraken taking Dadonov.
- According to the NHL, players picked in the expansion draft will receive a guidebook to help them adjust to to the new team and city.
- The Habs shocked the hockey world over the weekend when rumours started to circulate that they would not be protecting Carey Price in the draft. They are, of course, also leaving Shea Weber exposed as it is unclear if and when Weber will return to the NHL after needing surgery. As it turns out, though, there’s more to the Price story: he has an injury that might end up requiring surgery. It seems like Montreal is hoping the Kraken won’t bother taking him given the level of uncertainty surrounding his situation. It’s a pretty big gamble, though, and definitely an interesting storyline heading into the expansion draft. This is also interesting in the sense that things are starting to look a bit precarious in Montreal, with two of their big stars potentially out of commission. I, for one, am hoping for a 2017 Sens-level collapse in the year following the big run.
- In former Senators news, our collective son Fredrik Claesson signed a 1-year contract with the Lightning after winning the cup with them this season! I wish him all the best and hope he stays in the NHL for a long time.
- I recommended two podcasts in the Thursday LNN last week, but here’s another one for you: the Zubcast is a brand new Sens podcast that just uploaded an introductory episode and will have a full episode up soon. Make sure to follow them on social media and/or save the podcast on your preferred podcast listening app.
- In sad news, the Blue Jackets recently held a memorial service for Matiss Kivilenieks and his teammates had some very powerful things to say.
- And finally - I guess we’re just ending this on a sad note - Dolores Claman, the composer of the Hockey Night In Canada theme song, has died at the age of 94. You can read more about her here./