The Islanders may be giving the Golden Knights yet another first round pick (15th overall if it's this year's) to protect their forwards after putting five defensemen on the protection list.
Don't assume the top players left exposed ahead of the expansion draft are heading to Vegas, because Golden Knights GM George McPhee has made it abundantly clear he'll offer up additional protection for a price.
Expansion draft rules require the Vegas Golden Knights to select one unprotected player from each team, meaning they will take on the contract responsibilities of at least one player who skated with the Blues last season.
The draft which will take place on June 21st, will be used to complete the roster of the Vegas Golden Knights. Also, the salaries of players selected must total at least 60 percent of the salary cap ($43.8 million) for the season that just ended. Plus, he's known to Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant, who was unceremoniously fired by the Panthers during a season of upheaval in south Florida.
"We wanted to keep both goalies", Rutherford said.
In the end that's what the expansion draft is all about for Vegas.
Based on previous mock drafts, McPhee doesnt expect the Golden Knights to have any difficulty getting to the NHLs minimum payroll of 60 percent of the $75 million salary cap.
"I'm really pleased with what's available", McPhee said Sunday. He would likely receive a trove of draft picks, which would set up the Knights for this year and beyond.
McPhee said he believes he "can accomplish two things" during the expansion process after selecting players and making trades with other clubs.
And what about the other teams?
Regardless of his still-impressive talent, the real question with Thornton is whether a team looking to build long-term will want someone in the final stage of his career.
"Whatever you want to give us has to be better than what we can claim from that club", McPhee told reporters in Las Vegas on Sunday. How can we protect your roster? Las Vegas hits the ice for its first preseason game on September 17 at Rogers Arena against the Vancouver Canucks. Their struggles never subsided and the club was moved to Winnipeg less than 12 years after the first game in October 1999. I have shutdown guys in Methot and Johnson and potential power-play d-men in Alzner and Scandella, who checked in with an 11-goal season three years ago.
With this group, you have a personality to sell the game in a new market and Stanley Cup victor in Fleury as well as backups in Raanta and Mrazek who appear ready to take the next step. He's a right-handed shot. He struggled in 2016-17, but he was also adjusting to a backup role.
But since teams weren't able to protect everyone they would like, Vegas is going to use that against them and try to swing deals to selecting specific players.
Longtime Arizona Coyotes captain Shane Doan - and last original member of the Winnipeg Jets - is the franchise's all-time leader in just about every offensive category.
Other high-profile players include Anaheim's Sami Vatanen, Nashville's James Neal, Minnesota's Eric Staal, LA's Dustin Brown and Montreal's Tomas Plekanec. Hard to imagine McPhee would have jumped on Varlamov, even though McPhee drafted Varlamov back in the day in Washington.