Debate rages over who the Penguins should protect in Wednesday’s NHL expansion draft. There’s one move that the Penguins should definitely make, but won’t.
The Penguins should ask center Evgeni Malkin to waive his no-movement clause, then leave him unprotected.
Seattle won’t select a 34-year-old who has one year left on his contract, is going to miss at least half that season following knee surgery, and is due $9.5 million. There’s zero chance of that.
It’s the same as Jeff Carter, who is 36, also has one year remaining on his deal, carries a $2.6-million cap hit and would retire if Seattle took him. So, Seattle won't.
Exposing Malkin would enable the Penguins to protect a player that Seattle might poach, whether it’s Teddy Blueger or Jared McCann.
You’re not awarding merit badges. It’s about keeping assets.
But the Penguins won’t make that request of Malkin. They’re likely concerned about how he’d react, and how it looks.
Whispers say that Seattle might take winger Zach Aston-Reese. Aston-Reese had great analytics, and the Kraken will reportedly base much of their judgment thereof.
No knock on Aston-Reese, but here’s suspecting that would be OK by the Penguins.