Despite the setback to push the expansion draft lists to be published at 10:30 instead of 10:00 ET, Red Wings fans were still able to be mad online around 10:15.
The list was leaked about 15 minutes beforehand by Helene St. James, and there’s one glaring surprise: The Red Wings protected Jimmy Howard over Petr Mrazek.
Red Wings protect Abdelkader, Athanasiou, Mantha, Nielsen, Nyquist, Tatar, Zetterberg, DeKeyser, Green, Jensen, Howard.
— Helene St. James (@HeleneStJames) June 18, 2017
Since it’s a family site, we’ll just tell you there were two expletives lit up in our Slack chat about it.
Jimmy Howard, though he had a good year, as you know, is also signed for two more seasons at a $5.2 million cap hit and definitely did not need to be protected.
Though it seemed like it had no chance of happening earlier in the week, Petr Mrazek might be claimed, though Xavier Ouellet, Riley Sheahan, or Darren Helm may also crack the list. No word yet on any side deals, but judging from Ken Holland’s comments earlier in the week, it sounds like the Wings might just be cool with Vegas taking their choice of goalie.
Some thoughts from Nick Seguin:
The Red Wings forwards protected were pretty much what everyone expected. I still would have protected Sheahan over Abdelkader since Abby likely wouldn’t be taken anyways.
Defense is also what I expected. I would have liked to see Ouellet over Jensen, but losing Ouellet won’t hurt this team long-term, so I’m not too upset about it.
The real flabbergaster is the protection of Jimmy Howard over Petr Mrazek. Why protect a 31-year-old injury prone goalie on a bad contract vs a young, promising goalie on a good contract? Maybe Holland made a side deal for Vegas not to take Mrazek, but this is a bad decision either way. I wouldn’t be surprised if Vegas takes Mrazek for free and trades him for a ton of assets.
And Kyle Krische:
Yeah, Holland is a sleeper cell attempting to destroy this team before he jumps ship next year.
It’s going to be a long offseason. See you Wednesday night!