Another expansion draft has come and went, and much like the Vegas Golden Knights expansion draft, a lot of fans left it underwhelmed, especially with the really good players left unprotected by other teams.
That said, there’s a big difference between the underwhelming picks by Vegas, and the underwhelming picks by Seattle. With Vegas, a lot of fans failed to consider how some players would excel in new roles. William Karlsson was an anomaly, but even Reilly Smith, Nate Schmidt, and Colin Miller excelled in larger roles when they were analytics darlings in lesser roles on worse teams. That’s not to say Seattle didn’t do that either (more on that in a bit), but there’s a bit less upside to their picks.
Also, Vegas’ expansion draft didn’t get quite have the impact on the team that you might think still. Of their 30 selections in 2017, only six players remain on the team, and two of them (William Carrier and Tomas Nosek) are bottom six forwards. Vegas made a bigger impact in the expansion draft through side deals and expanding their draft capital, creating the contender they are today.
Granted, Seattle clearly has an identity they’re …
Author: Scott Maxwell / The Leafs Nation