Preparing for expansion


The NHL has discussed the idea of adding two more teams to the league, beginning with the 2017-18 season. It’s not official, but it is almost a sure thing.

So, there are some things you’ll need to know about an expansion and how it impacts the current teams.

First, each current team would lose one player per NHL team added.

Current teams would have to create a list of “exposed players” that would be eligible for the the expansion draft. Meaning, the new team can only take a player from that list. That list either has to include one goalie, seven forwards, and three defensemen or one goalie and eight skaters.

Think about that for a second and think about what that means. Only one goaltender on the team can be protected. As of now, Robin Lehner would be the one to protect, while Chad Johnson would go on that list.

The Sabres would have to list skaters as well, of course. Teams must expose at least 25 percent of the previous season’s salary cap. This could benefit some teams who have players with brutal contracts.

At the end of it all, the Sabres could lose one or two players, but no more. Remember that the expansion would not be until the 2017-18 season, but the NHL has only a couple of months to make this official.

What are your thoughts? Who would be on your list of exposed players?

Kevin Freiheit
Kevin Freiheit
I founded Buffalo Hockey Central in 2008 and have poured hours and hours into this site. Luckily, we have a great team of writers and designers who have helped keep this up and running despite a ton of out-of-pocket costs. We do this because we enjoy it, and we're desperate to see the Sabres win the Cup someday, but they have to make the playoffs first.
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