Published: Mon, June 19, 2017
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Penguins' Fleury left available for Vegas expansion draft


Every team - except for Vegas, of course - had until 10:30 a.m. Sunday morning to finalize a list of players they wanted to keep from being selected in the expansion draft.

The Penguins opted instead to protect Hornqvist, who has one year left on his deal at $4.25 million.

Fleury and Murray split the duties in the playoffs as the Penguins won a second consecutive championship.

Anaheim Ducks couldn't find room on their list to protect fifth year defenceman Sami Vatanen, who won't be ready for the start of next season after having surgery to fix a shoulder injury.

Neal wasn't the only high-profile player left exposed by the Predators, who are coming off their first Stanley Cup Final appearance.

Other notable forwards left unprotected were Los Angeles's Dustin Brown, Montreal's Tomas Plekanec and Pittsburgh's Chris Kunitz.

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Defensemen: Victor Bartley, Matt Dumba, Christian Folin, Guillaume Gelinas, Alexander Gudbranson, Gustav Olofsson, Nate Prosser, Marco Scandella, Mike Weber. There's a similar concern from the Western Conference champion Nashville Predators, who will most likely expose a few intriguing forwards to protect defensemen Roman Josi, P.K. Subban, Ryan Ellis and Mattias Ekholm. Aside from Fleury, other goalies available are Florida's Roberto Luongo, Detroit's Petr Mrazek and Philadelphia's Michal Neuvirth.

The Golden Knights have the ability to sign unrestricted free agents and restricted free agents who are eligible for the expansion draft (which excludes the Blues' Parayko), but that transaction would count as the team's selection.

Sami Vatanen is a target for many teams this season, heading into the expansion draft. McPhee said Sunday that a team must offer the Golden Knights an asset "better" than the player he can claim in the draft.

The most notable player the Penguins will expose to Vegas in this week's National Hockey League expansion draft has been public for almost a week.

McPhee has made it known that he's willing to cut deals-if you want a player, Vegas could select them and trade them to you.

As expected, the Blackhawks chose to protect seven forwards, three defensemen and one goalie. He has one year left on his contract, with a cap hit of $2.1 million.

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Zdeno Chara: The lone B's defenseman with a no-movement clause, the Bruins are not letting their captain walk for nothing.

The former Capitals GM also previously signed Washington defenseman Nate Schmidt out of college and Sharks right winger Joel Ward in free agency and traded for Flames right winger Troy Brouwer.

The last single-team expansion draft, in 1999, had the Thrashers making six trades to forego unprotected players, and four more within a month of the draft.

All of the picks will be made public Wednesday night during the 2017 NHL Awards show, which is taking place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

That could make for some increased prices for protection, too, which could greatly benefit the Golden Knights.

When the list was initially released, some fans were confused and surprised to see that forward Brayden Point was left off the protected list, but he doesn't meet the exposure requirements (still considered a rookie), and thus, Vegas will not be able to select him.

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