Washington Capitals announce Available, and Protected list ahead of the 2021 NHL Expansion Draft

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Washington Capitals head coach Peter Laviolette talks with referee Jean Hebert (15) during the third period in Game 5 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup first-round playoff series against the Boston Bruins, Sunday, May 23, 2021, in Washington. The Bruins won 3-1. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

WASHINGTON, D.C. (WDVM) – This Wednesday, July 21st; the NHL’s 32nd franchise will take form, as the Seattle Kraken will start filling their roster, ahead of the 2021-2022 NHL season. The city of Seattle was granted an expansion franchise back in December 2019, with the name, and logo revealed last summer as the Seattle Kraken.

With the 2021 NHL Expansion Draft coming up, teams can protect up to as many as 11 players; seven forwards, three defensemen, and one goaltender.

The Washington Capitals have opted to protect the following players:

  • Nicklas Backstrom
  • Lars Eller
  • Evgeny Kuznetsov
  • Anthony Mantha
  • T.J. Oshie
  • Daniel Sprong
  • Tom Wilson
  • John Carlson
  • Dmitry Orlov
  • Trevor van Riemsdyk
  • Ilya Samsonov

Captain Alexander Ovechkin will be an unrestricted free agent on July 28th, and because he has yet to sign a contract extension; Washington did not need to use a protection slot on him.

The Kraken will be able to choose from forwards Nic Dowd, Carl Hagelin, Garnet Hathaway, or Conor Sheary, defensemen Nick Jensen, Brenden Dillon, Michal Kempny, or Justin Schultz, and goaltenders Pheonix Copley, and Vitek Vanecek.

Seattle will select 14 forwards, nine defensemen, three goaltenders; and must have at least 20 players who are under contract for the 2021-2022 season. The combined salaries of the roster must reach between 60% to 100% of the league’s annual salary cap, which is $81.5 million.

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