No-Movement Clauses and The Next NHL Expansion Draft

by | Dec 10, 2018 | Soapbox | 6 comments

Last Tuesday, the NHL board of governors unanimously approved awarding an expansion franchise to the city of Seattle, Washington. The club’s first season will be in 2021-22, making it the first NHL team in the American Pacific Northwest and providing a natural rival for the Vancouver Canucks.

The expansion draft for the Seattle franchise will be held in June 2021 at the renovated KeyArena, with the rules similar to those of the 2017 expansion draft. The as-yet-unnamed Seattle club will select one player from each team (excluding the Golden Knights) for a total of 30 players: 14 forwards, nine defensemen and three goaltenders.

Each club has the option of protecting seven forwards, three defensemen and a goaltender, or eight skaters (forward or defense) and a goalie. All first- and second-year players, and all unsigned draft choices will be exempt.

Players with no-movement clauses at the time of the draft, and who decline to waive those clauses, must be protected by their teams.

Thanks to the good folks at the indispensable Cap Friendly, here’s a list of players who have “effective & continuing “No Move” clauses in 2021 as part of their contracts”:


Fifteen teams – Arizona Coyotes, Boston Bruins, Carolina Hurricanes, Chicago Blackhawks, Colorado Avalanche, Dallas Stars, Detroit Red Wings, Edmonton Oilers, Florida Panthers, Los Angeles Kings, Minnesota Wild, Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers, Philadelphia Flyers, and Pittsburgh Penguins – will be affected, totaling 27 players.

The Blackhawks, Stars, and Penguins will be most affected, with each club having four players to protect, followed by the Bruins, Panthers, and Wild with two each.

Of those players, only two – the Stars’ Tyler Seguin and the Panthers’ Jonathan Huberdeau – will be under the age of 30.

Bear in mind this list could grow as more players are signed to long-term contract prior to the 2020-21 season. Given the impact they have on a team’s protected list, general managers could be reluctant to include such clauses in new contracts if they’re in effect during the year of the expansion draft.

Those no-movement clauses must be in effect before June 30, 2021. The number of players on each club with those clauses could also change as a few could agree to waive them in order to be dealt to another team.



  1. Nice Lyle. I remember Kenny from thn writing an article about how Seattle would be screwed because everyone would learn from Vegas success. I hate the term lol but I did guffaw at that one. NHL GMs generally never learn and plenty of teams will have bad contracts to dump and players to protect. But… avoiding nmc was the one area gms will learn from. There will be plenty of ntc. But until expansion stops nmc only for the elite of elite

    • I’d like to see written into any revised agreement that, anyone with a ntc who ultimately demands to be traded (for whatever reason) instantly abrogates any authority as to WHERE they are dealt.

      • George

        Great idea but I don’t think the NHLPA would sign off on that clause.

        Would certainly open up the trade market

        I want to see the “get out of jail free” no hassle buyout (for 2 contracts) come back for just the expansion year …. a shuffling of the cards so to speak

      • Very almost 90 year old of you…… Georgie 😎

  2. Penguins must rid themselves of Kessel by the expansion draft …. protecting a 34 year old Kessel over a mid 20’s up and comer would be very costly (either losing the young player or paying Seattle with assets to leave him untouched) IMO

    • Hi Pengy.
      But what if Kessel is still scoring at a near HOF clip and the mid twenties up and coming guys can’t get it done?
      Why do you hate Phil the thrill sp much?
      He’s an oddball for sure, but he’s one of the best pure goal scorers in the league.