Should Tarasenko be exposed and claimed by Seattle, the Blues would be free of his $7.5 million salary-cap hit. That’s money they could use in the free agent market.
If Armstrong is convinced he can’t find a trade partner for Tarasenko, he could even offer a sweetener to the Kraken by adding a player or draft choice to the mix. Or agreeing to retain part of Tarasenko’s cap hit in return for Seattle selecting the disgruntled forward. That would seem to be a drastic solution, and out of character for Armstrong.
In any event, if Tarasenko is exposed and taken by the Kraken under any circumstances, the Blues would get nothing in return for someone who was a perennial 30 goal-plus scorer until shoulder issues derailed his last two seasons.
Among forwards expected to be exposed by the Blues are Tyler Bozak, Mike Hoffman, Jaden Schwartz, Zach Sanford, Kyle Clifford and Mackenzie MacEachern.
Other than Dunn, defensemen expected to be exposed are Robert Bortuzzo, Niko Mikkola and Marco Scandella.
Prospects such as Dakota Joshua, Klim Kostin, Jake Neighbours and Jake Walman are exempt from the expansion draft because they don’t have enough pro experience. (In the case of Neighbours, the team’s first-round pick in the 2020 draft, he has no pro experience in terms of games played.)