10 years ago, the NHL welcomed the Minnesota Wild and Columbus Blue Jackets into the fold. It was the sixth expansion draft in nine years, and by that point, NHL fans were pretty used to the process surrounding one of these drafts.
It's been a decade since that last one, though, and here at SB Nation, in the dog days of summer, we've decided to re-acclimate ourselves with the process. Presenting.... the 2010 SB Nation NHL Mock Expansion Draft.
Whether you think the NHL needs expansion or not -- and honestly, most people probably feel like the NHL needs contraction before any type of expansion -- it doesn't matter. This isn't a real exercise, after all. It's just for fun.
Oh, and we need your help. There might even be a virtual trophy at the end.
Here's a loose timeline of how this thing will play out:
- Starting today, and by using the poll at the bottom of this story, help us select the location for the two new teams in our league. We've narrowed down the list of potential cities to Houston, Hamilton, Seattle, Quebec City, Kansas City, Portland and Winnipeg.
- Tomorrow, on Friday, August 26, we'll post the results of the vote. From there, we'll open the voting on potential nicknames for the two selected cities. On Monday the 30th, we'll debut the two new teams and announce which distinguished members of the hockey world will have the chance to run them
into the ground.
- Next week, between Monday and Thursday, September 2, our team blogs from around SB Nation will, with help from their communities, debate and finalize their "protected lists" of players that cannot be poached away in our expansion draft.
- Over Labor Day weekend, with all of the protected lists complete and published on our team blogs, our appointed general managers will meet in a basement somewhere and select their teams.
- On Tuesday the 5th, the day after Labor Day, we'll announce those teams, and at some point that week, we'll simulate a series of games between those two teams.
There will be a winner. And a prize. And lots and lots of bragging rights.
So, without further adieu, help us pick the two locations to which our league shall expand. Please only vote for two.
Check back on Friday for the results.