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The 2022 NWSL Expansion Draft guide

Everything you’ll need to know before the expansion draft

2020 NWSL Draft Photo by Jose Argueta/ISI Photos/Getty Images

The 2022 NWSL Expansion Draft has finally arrived and with the number of trades (officially announced or not) that have transpired before the transfer window closes means that there’s a lot of mixed messaging out there. Some information we already know but until other information gets dropped, we’re all taking a guess right now at which is player is where when the expansion draft begins.

Important things to note:

  • The Chicago Red Stars have full expansion protection from Angel City FC and San Diego Wave FC due to the trading away the rights of Julie Ertz and Sarah Gorden to Angel City, and Katie Johnson and the rights to Makenzy Doniak and Kelsey Turnbow (along with $25,000 in allocation money) to San Diego.
  • Kansas City Current also have full expansion draft protection due to the a clause that the club agreed to when they joined the NWSL as a new team.
  • NJ/NY Gotham FC also have expansion draft protection due to them trading the rights to Kailen Sheridan to Angel City and $130,000 in allocation money from Wave FC. Angel City also got the rights to DiDi Haracic in exchange for $50,000 in allocation money.
  • The North Carolina Courage have full expansion protection due to trading the rights to Cari Roccaro and Angharad James to Angel City and San Diego respectively.
  • OL Reign FC received $25,000 in allocation money and protection for their forward position group from Angel City in exchange for the No. 36 pick in the 2022 NWSL College Draft. That group includes Bethany Balcer, Tziarra King, Leah Pruitt, Megan Rapinoe and Ally Watt.
  • Portland Thorns FC have expansion protection from Angle City after trading the rights to Simone Charley and Tyler Lussi, $100,000 in allocation money and the natural second-round pick in the 2022 NWSL College Draft.
  • Racing Louisville FC also have expansion protection, a natural first-round pick in the 2022 NWSL Draft and $75,000 in allocation money from Angel City in exchange for the rights to Christen Press.
  • The Washington Spirit traded the rights to Mary Alice Vignola to Angel City in exchange for $30,000 in funded allocation money and protection for its USWNT allocated players (something that will no longer be applicable to USWNT in the future). The Spirit also have full protection from Wave FC in exchange for the rights to Teagan McGrady, the natural first-round pick and an international slot for the 2022 season.
  • Stephanie Cox, Amanda Dennis, Schuyler DeBree, Zoe Goralski, Carli Lloyd and Sydney Miramontez have announced their retirements and their rights will remain currently with their most recent NWSL club.

(Further details and allocations for the NWSL Expansion Draft can be found here.)

The selections made by Angel City and Wave FC will be revealed on Thursday, December 16, 2021 at 7pm EST.

How to watch:

The draft will air on CBS Sports Network and streamed live on Paramount+ and CBS Sports HQ. The draft will also be streamed live on CBS Sports’ Twitch channel and both the CBS Sports and NWSL YouTube channels.

List of all the protected and unprotected players from each team.

Note: As previously stated, not everything listed above may be accurate by the time the expansion draft begins so please don’t flame me too much.