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Seattle Kraken NHL Expansion Draft – Pacific Division

The excitement is building as the Seattle Kraken expansion draft is coming up next week. In advance of the release of each team’s protected player list, Fantrax HQ is going to give you their predictions of who is likely to be protected for all 30 teams (Vegas received a hall pass for this draft as part of their entry into the league in 2017). In addition to providing our team by team protected list, we will also highlight a player from each team that should see a fantasy bump in their value this upcoming season. 

First up is the Pacific division which includes: Anaheim, Calgary, Edmonton, Los Angeles, San Jose, Vancouver. The other two teams in this division, Seattle and Vegas will be excluded for the purpose of this article.

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NHL Protected Lists and Fantasy League Players on the Rise

Anaheim Ducks Protected: 8 skaters and 1 goalie 

Skaters – Hampus Lindholm, Cam Fowler, Josh Manson, Haydn Fleury, Jakob Silfverberg, Rickard Rakell, Troy Terry, Isac Lundestrom

Goalie – Josh Gibson

Look for the Kraken to select Sam Steel. Steel hasn’t really lived up to his offensive promise thus far in Anaheim. A move to Seattle could be the ticket to an increase in his ice time and responsibilities pushing his production in a positive direction.

Calgary Flames Protected: 7 forwards, 3 defensemen, and 1 goalie

Forwards – Matthew Tkachuk, Elias Lindholm, Johnny Gaudreau, Sean Monahan, Mikael Backlund, Andrew Mangiapane, Dillon Dubé

Defense – Noah Hanafin, Rasmus Andersson, Chris Tanev

Goalie – Jacob Markstrom

Fortunately for the Flames, Milan Lucic waived his No Movement Contract allowing the team to protect promising 22-year-old winger Dillon Dubé. I would target Dubé as a player who may have a breakout season in 2021-22. Look for the Kraken to solidify their defense by selecting 2019 Norris Trophy winner Mark Giordano and perhaps naming him the first captain in the team’s history.

Edmonton Oilers Protected: 7 forwards, 3 defensemen, and 1 goalie

Forwards – Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, Ryan Nugent Hopkins, Kailer Yamamoto, Jesse Puljujarvi, Zack Kassian, Cooper Marody

Defense – Darnell Nurse, Duncan Keith (NMC), Oscar Klefbom

Goalie – Miko Koskinen

The recent acquisition of Keith and his NMC seems to have the Oilers positioned to lose defenseman Ethan Bear in this draft. Bear has an untapped offensive side to his game. His puck-moving skills would be appealing to the Kraken. This could be a great opportunity for Bear to increase his offensive output which in turn would push up his fantasy value.

Los Angeles Kings Protected: 7 forwards, 3 defensemen, and 1 goalie

Forwards – Anze Kopitar, Viktor Arvidsson, Alex Iafallo, Adrian Kempe, Brendan Lemieux, Lias Andersson, Trevor Moore

Defense – Drew Doughty (NMC), Sean Walker, Matt Roy

Goalie – Cal Petersen

It appears the Kings could lose one of Dustin Brown or Kale Clague to Seattle. I can’t see either of these two possible player movements having significant changes in their fantasy values. The player to perhaps reach for a little bit earlier in your fantasy drafts is Arvidsson. He should be in line for a bounce-back year with his recent move from Nashville to the Kings.

San Jose Sharks Protected: 7 forwards, 3 defensemen, and 1 goalie

Forwards – Logan Couture, Evander Kane, Thomas Hertl, Timo Meier, Kevin Labanc, Rudolf Balcers, Jonathan Dahlen

Defense – Erik Karlsson (NMC), Marc-Eduard Vlasic (NMC), Brett Burns

Goalie – Josef Korenar

The Sharks are in a position to not lose anyone of any significance. A possible sleeper for fantasy owners is Dahlen. He is back in North America after 2 seasons of tearing up the 2nd division in the Swedish League. There’s no questioning Dahlen’s skill; he should get a great opportunity with the Sharks this season to see if his game can transition to the NHL.

Vancouver Canucks Protected: 7 forwards, 3 defensemen, and 1 goalie

Forwards – Brock Boeser, Elias Pettersen, JT Miller, Bo Horvat, Tanner Pearson, Tyler Motte, Kole Lind

Defense – Tyler Meyers, Olie Juolevi, Nate Schmidt

Goalie – Thatcher Demko

There is a reasonable chance Holtby is the player selected by Seattle but this won’t move Holtby’s fantasy value. There are two players from the Canucks that fantasy owners should watch; Lind and Jonah Gadjovich. Gadjovich potted 15 goals in 18 games in the AHL this past season and Lind is on the cusp of becoming a regular NHL player. One of these guys has an excellent chance at cracking the Canucks lineup this season and the other suiting up for the Kraken. I would put both on my radar for a deep draft or early waiver wire pick up.

There you have it. A quick hit at possible protected lists from the Pacific Division and how it may impact the fantasy values of some players. Coming up in the next couple of days will be the Central Division.

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