The order of selection changed slightly this year. Beginning this year the non-playoff clubs from the previous season would not only have priority over the playoff clubs but they would be allowed to have the first round of selections to themselves, and all subsequent rounds until each of them had passed on their selections. Once they had all passed within a round the playoff clubs would be allowed to begin selections, and have a round of selections to themselves. All following rounds would be as they were in prior drafts: non-playoff clubs in inverse order of points in the preceding regular season followed by playoff clubs in inverse order of points.
The non-playoff clubs would also be allowed to choose whether or not to drop a player from their protected lists when they made a selection, thereby forcing the club from which they made a claim to accept the waiver price instead of having the opportunity to claim a player as compensation.
The only caveat to this scheme that afforded the non-playoff clubs exclusive rounds of selections was that in those first rounds they were not allowed to pick a player from a team in their own division.
|Player||Picked by||Picked from||Player dropped|
from protected list
|Cash or claim?|
|Bob Bourne||Los Angeles Kings||New York Islanders||none||$2,500|
|Clark Gillies||Buffalo Sabres||New York Islanders||none||$2,500|
|Mal Davis||Los Angeles Kings||Buffalo Sabres||none||$7,500|
|Wilf Paiement||Buffalo Sabres||New York Rangers||none||$2,500|
|all non-playoff clubs passed|
|Pat Hughes||St. Louis Blues||Buffalo Sabres||Eddy Beers||$2,500|
|Gord Sherven||Hartford Whalers||Edmonton Oilers||Bill Gardner||$40,000|
|John Blum||Washington Capitals||Boston Bruins||Mark Taylor||$15,000|
The dismantling of the New York Islanders dynasty was in full swing by this point. They lost Dave Langevin in the '85 Waiver Draft and had already traded away Butch Goring and John Tonelli. Bob Nystrom retired in the off-season, and in the first round of the '86 Waiver Draft they lost long-time players Bob Bourne and Clark Gillies. '86-'87 would also be Mike Bossy's final season; he declared his retirement from playing hockey in 1988 due to ongoing problems with his back.
TRIVIA: Bob Bourne's son Justin, a hockey player in his own right who played in the AHL and ECHL before retiring due to injuries, married Clark Gillies' daughter Brianna in 2011.