While players with strict no-trade or no-movement clauses will have to be protected at the expansion draft, so far the National Hockey League has given out the impression that the remaining names on those lists of protected players will be kept secret.
One NHL general manager doesn't really seem to mind sharing that information however and on Tuesday during a radio interview Dallas starsGM Jim Nill appeared to reveal the first name on his list. Surprisingly it's a player that isn't even currently playing for Dallas in the NHL, but rather the KHL's Valeri Nichushkin.
"We're planning on him coming back, I don't know if it's going to be one year or two years," said Nill as per The Score's Ian McLaren. "He's probably a player we're going to protect. He's only 21 years old, he's got a lot of upside and a lot of value."
Nichushkin was a restricted free agent this summer and when he couldn't get the contract he wanted from the Stars he called their bluff and bolted for the KHL, but despite that it seems the Stars still see him in their long-term plans.
While it's just one name on a list that will eventually include 7 forwards, it's our first piece of a puzzle that the NHL intends to keep a secret.