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Tampa Bay Lightning Trade Drouin

The dominoes are starting to fall, as teams make roster moves in advance of the expansion draft. The Tampa Bay Lightning traded Jonathan Drouin to Montreal for Mikhail Sergachev and a conditional second rounder. Montreal will also receive a conditional sixth-round draft pick. But there are likely more deals to come. While Drouin was linked to being traded to the Canadiens it was for Galchenyuk. But Sergachev fills a defensive need for the Lightning and while the price was a bit steep it could help both teams. It should save Tampa Bay a fair amount in cap space. It also frees up a spot in the expansion draft.

No doubt Drouin is the better player right now. While he hasn’t always seen eye-to-eye with Tampa Brass, he’s a talent. Drouin had 53 points in 73 games for Tampa Bay this season. Sergachev is still an untested defenseman yet to play in the NHL. But he has loads of potential. While it’s always risky to trade an established player for one who could become one, the Lightning felt it was a risk worth taking.

The New York Rangers bought out Dan Girardi on Wednesday. That may help them in their quest to sign Kevin Shattenkirk. But New York will have to shed a bit of money since Girardi buyout will count against their cap.

Teams have until 5 p.m. Saturday to fill out their protected lists for the expansion draft. Don’t be surprised to see a few more deals take place leading up to that. There will also likely be a few deals shortly after the expansion draft. Don’t be surprised to see Las Vegas in the middle of many of them. The defensemen they pick up could be solid trade chips. Whoever they get from Minnesota is likely to have value to other teams.

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