Now that the moment has officially come where Tyler Wong is sent away from camp without an NHL contract, it’s come time we really clear up what it means for his future with the Golden Knights or another team. Wong is signed to a standard player contract with the Chicago Wolves, the primary AHL affiliate of the Golden Knights. He is NOT signed to the Golden Knights like players such as Reid Duke, Tomas Hyka, or Keegan Kolesar. However, Vegas is also NOT in any imminent danger of losing him to another team.
Technically, they should be, but looking through the history of the league, and knowing the “good ole boys” network NHL GM’s keep with each other, Wong won’t be signed by any other GM. With the gentleman’s agreement not to poach AHL players off each other’s teams, NHL GM’s can essentially skirt the 50 man maximum contract limit. This is the reason Wong was not given a 2-way contract before he was sent to Chicago.
Whether he was offered a 2-way deal or not, he would have been paid the exact same amount per game for the Wolves, and if/when he gets called up to Vegas, they’ll offer him the same deal they would have today, so his NHL pay would remain the same as well. So, it’s a win-win-win for the Golden Knights, Chicago Wolves, and Wong, assuming no GM goes crazy… which they won’t.
Fear not folks, Tyler Wong may not officially be a Golden Knight, but there’s absolutely no way he’s on another NHL roster without McPhee having his say first.