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NY Riveters & Connecticut Whale Trade Rights to 2015 Draft Picks



The first trade of the National Women’s Hockey League for the 2016-2017 season took place on Tuesday, as the New York Riveters and Connecticut Whale traded the rights to their second picks from the 2015 NWHL Draft.

The Riveters sent the rights to Haley Skarupa, to the Whale for the rights to Michelle Picard. The Riveters chose Skarupa fifth overall in the 2015 Draft, while the Whale chose Picard with the sixth pick.

Skarupa finished her college career with Boston College amassing 244 points in 144 games. Last season with the Eagles, Skarupa scored 79 points, 35 goals and 44 assists in her senior year.

Skarupa spent time with the United States National Team, even contributing three assists in this past year’s World Championships, helping to lead Team USA to the gold.

Defenseman, Picard scored 53 points in 128 games. The Harvard Crimson captain’s, 12 points last season tied her for first amongst team defense with junior Briana Mastel. Picard spent the past five seasons with Harvard, after redshirting in 2013-2014 season, to represent Team USA at the Sochi Olympics.

Like Skarupa, Picard also spent the past two years as part of the US National Team at the World Championships.

The two players may now continue negotiations with their new clubs. The restricted free agency period runs until April 30, after which, any free agent or draft choice that has not signed with the club that retains the rights, are free to sign with any organization within the league.

If another club does sign another club’s draft pick, they will face a salary cap penalty. The cap penalty will run anywhere from 1,000 to 5,000 dollars depending on the round the player was drafted in. All contracts signed during either free agency period shall be one year deals.

As a draft pick must complete their degree and continue playing at the level of commitment when drafted, a team retains that player’s rights through the end of her college career. The 2016 Junior Draft will take place on June 18.

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