Brent Seabrook’s announcement that he doesn’t intend to return to professional hockey has other implications as well, particularly the upcoming expansion draft. Up until now, the team had Seabrook inked in as a player the team had to protect due to his no-movement clause. Now, with Seabrook being moved to LTIR and effectively retiring allows the Chicago Blackhawks some much-needed flexibility, according to the Chicago Tribune’s Jimmy Greenfield.
The team no longer needs to protect Seabrook from the Seattle Kraken and expansion draft, which will allow them to retain an extra defenseman they weren’t originally expecting to be able to keep. Assuming the team goes with the 7-3-1 format, the team can now protect Duncan Keith and Connor Murphy like they had originally planned. However, now the team has the option of protecting Nikita Zadorov or Calvin de Haan, with Zadorov being the more likely of the two to be protected. de Haan and his $4.55 AAV are more likely to be traded at the trade deadline or exposed to Seattle.
- The Detroit Red Wings continue to be without top-line winger Tyler Bertuzzi, who has been out since Jan. 30th with an upper-body injury. Head coach Jeff Blashill said that the forward still isn’t able to practice, according to the Detroit Free Press’ Helene St. James. The news is a little more promising for Dylan Larkin, who has missed four games with an upper-body injury. MLive’s Ansar Khan reports that Larkin could be ready to go on Tuesday, but Blashill said much of that determination will be based on practice Sunday and Monday. For now, he’s considered day-to-day.
- Despite taking the ice Saturday in Dallas’ morning skate, forward Alexander Radulov is not expected to return to the team for another week, according to Dallas Morning News’ Matthew DeFranks. Radulov has been out with a lower-body injury and has not played since Feb. 4. Radulov has appeared in only eight games for the Stars this season, but does have an impressive three goals and 11 points.
- NHL.com’s Michael Smith reports that Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Jake Gardiner is ready to return to the lineup Sunday. The 30-year-old has been out since Feb. 24 and has missed five games with an upper-body injury. Gardiner has seven assists in 16 games this season and could return to his role on the power-play as well.