Senators Protected List Unveiled For Expansion

Senators Protected List Unveiled For Expansion


Senators Protected List Unveiled For Expansion


Better late than never.

In a rare blunder, the NHL released each team’s list of protected and unprotected players 30 minutes later than the originally planned 10:00 am ET revealing.

Although that led to some handwringing on the interwebs, it wasn’t long before NHL insiders were tripping over themselves to reveal lists ahead of the new 10:30 am deadline.

When the league officially revealed the lists, there weren’t any big surprises on the Senators’ end.

Protected Players

  • Derick Brassard (F)
  • Ryan Dzingel (F)
  • Mike Hoffman (F)
  • Jean-Gabriel Pageau (F)
  • Zack Smith (F)
  • Mark Stone (F)
  • Kyle Turris (F)
  • Cody Ceci (D)
  • Erik Karlsson (D)
  • Dion Phaneuf (D)
  • Craig Anderson (G)

Available players

  • Casey Bailey (F)
  • Mike Blunden (F)
  • Alexandre Burrows (F)
  • Stephane Da Costa (F)
  • Christopher DiDomenico (F)
  • Nikita Filatov (F)
  • Chris Kelly (F)
  • Clarke MacArthur (F)
  • Max McCormick (F)
  • Chris Neil (F)
  • Tom Pyatt (F)
  • Ryan Rupert (F)
  • Bobby Ryan (F)
  • Viktor Stalberg (F)
  • Phil Varone (F)
  • Tommy Wingels (F)
  • Mark Borowiecki (D)
  • Fredrik Claesson (D)
  • Brandon Gormley (D)
  • Jyrki Jokipakka (D)
  • Marc Methot (D)
  • Patrick Sieloff (D)
  • Chris Wideman (D)
  • Mikael Wikstrand (D)
  • Mike Condon (G)
  • Chris Driedger (G)
  • Andrew Hammond (G)

Following reports that Dion Phaneuf would not waive his no-movement clause and reports suggesting that Cody Ceci had been informed that he would be protected, that Marc Methot was available for selection did not come as a surprise.

The good news is that the Senators protected an effective and inexpensive forward in Ryan Dzingel rather than protect one of their veteran forwards at his expense.

No one should bat an eye at Bobby Ryan’s unprotected status. Ryan even reflected on whatever fears he had for expansion, joking that no one would want to touch the five years and $37.25-million left on his contract.

Similarly, the decision to expose Clarke MacArthur is straightforward. When healthy, he’s a top-six forward on this team who can play an excellent two-way game, but the fact that he could potentially be one hit away from walking away from the game will probably scare Vegas from burning their claim on him.

Obviously the next few days will make for a long wait for Marc Methot, but there’s still time for the Senators to put a trade together to ensure that Las Vegas does not select in the expansion draft.

Not that I’d encourage the Senators to do that, mind you.

With Dion Phaneuf in the fold, Thomas Chabot on his way to the parent level and Fredrik Claesson playing well last season, the Senators should have enough depth to cover Methot’s absence in the even that he’s claimed. (As an aside, how much of a power move would it be for Phaneuf to refuse to waive his NMC, see Methot move on and then succeed him on the first pairing with Erik Karlsson?)

What Pierre Dorion has to weigh is whether it’s in the club’s best interests to keep Methot in the fold. Maybe the opportunity cost needed to ensure that Methot goes unclaimed will be too rich for Dorion’s blood and he’ll balk at doing whatever it takes to ensure Methot returns next season.

With two years and $9.8-million remaining on his deal, Methot’s a relatively expensive piece for this team, but the term of his contract does coincide with the Senators’ window of opportunity.

There’s no question that the Senators’ roster is structured to be competitive now and management may believe that Methot’s presence gives them more of an opportunity to win than to simply replace him with a Phaneuf or a significantly cheaper asset like Claesson. (Of course, replacing Methot with Claesson isn’t strictly a one-for-one kind of move. Once you consider the cash involved and difference in salary, the Senators could reallocate Methot’s money to plug other holes on the roster.)

Then again, maybe the Golden Knights balk at adding Methot and settle on selecting a Claesson or a Chris Wideman. Their interest in Wideman was chronicled throughout the season.

There is also the possibility that a third team could look at Methot’s availability and arrange a trade with Las Vegas wherein they trade a combination of draft picks and prospects so that Vegas claims Methot in the expansion draft and immediately trades him to this mystery team. Moreover, the Senators could also look at the list of players being made available to Vegas and work out trades with Vegas to bring another player into the fold. Already it’s easy to point out a number of players and defencemen who could help the Senators.

The good news is that the events leading up to the announcement of Las Vegas’ roster should create a ton of intrigue and possibilities.

We just have to wait a little bit longer for the events to play out.

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