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A Case For And Against Trading Each Of VGK’s Top-Six Forwards And Top-Four Defensemen

(Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

The Golden Knights are likely headed for an offseason of change. It might be just a little if they can solve the goalie situation without breaking the bank or it might be a lot if they land the big fish in free agency. Either way, the possibility of moving one of Vegas’ top-six forwards and/or top-four defensemen is much higher this offseason than it was last summer.

Here’s a case for why they should trade each one of them, followed by a case against it. (Alex Tuch is substituted for Mark Stone due to Stone’s full no-movement clause.)

Max Pacioretty
$7 million (3 seasons remaining)

Case for: You want cap relief, here it is. Shedding Pacioretty’s $7 million would basically allow for a one-for-one move to make the big-ticket free-agent splash. Pacioretty may not return nearly as much as you’d probably like after the dismal end to the playoffs, but he has a history of scoring and former captains aren’t easy to find. He’s likely on the declining side of his peak and his injury issues are concerning. If someone is willing to buck up a 2nd round pick and eat the entire $21 million in cap space over the next three years, Vegas absolutely has to listen.

Case against: The biggest problem the Golden Knights had in 2019-20, and especially in the playoffs, was scoring and the solution is to trade the team’s leading scorer? What world are we living in here? The guy is coming off a 32 goal pandemic shortened season and was clearly banged up during the playoffs. When he’s healthy, he’s the best scorer Vegas has. He’s also worked incredibly well with VGK’s most important forward, Mark Stone. I’ll repeat what I said before, if scoring is the issue, you do not trade your leading scorer.

Jonathan Marchessault
$5 million (4 seasons remaining)

Case for: The case for trading Marchessault must start with his play in the postseason. He’s not the best defensive player in the world, he’s been known to take a penalty or two that he shouldn’t, and he isn’t exactly the physical specimen you look for in a hockey player, but all of that is overlooked because he can do the hardest thing to do in hockey, score. When he doesn’t, he has to be considered when thinking about change. The cap number would help free up some space for Vegas to make the splash they are hoping for in free agency and his production under DeBoer hasn’t matched what it was under Gallant which causes concern for the future. Plus, he’s played a lot less under DeBoer showing a lack of trust that Gallant had. This postseason Marchessault averaged 16:33 per game, in 2018 he averaged 19:25. The return would likely be worthwhile which could help in making something else happen down the line.

Case against: Like it or not, the team goes when Marchessault goes. In this year’s playoffs, when Marchessault scored at least one point, Vegas went 6-1. When he didn’t register a point, they were 6-7. In 2018, they were 10-3 with a point and 3-4 without. He brings the offensive energy to a team that at times can lack it. There’s a strong chance the bubble was not ideal for Marchessault and it hindered his play. The cap hit is not exorbitant and Vegas has control for each of the next four seasons. He has 181 points in 225 games for the Golden Knights in the regular season and 37 in 47 games in the playoffs. They cannot overvalue the last two months in comparison to his previous three years in Vegas. Selling low would be a mistake, one the Golden Knights would surely pay for every time #81 came back to town wearing a new jersey.

Paul Stastny
$6.5 million (1 season remaining)

Case for: With just the single-season left on the contract and a trio of younger centers waiting (Stephenson, Glass, Roy), it makes sense to pull the plug one year early as opposed to one too late. He’d fetch at least some sort of asset and he’ll free up most of the cap space to make the big free agent play. No, he’s not completely replaceable and they’d miss what he can do, but the drop-off isn’t nearly significant enough to let his contract stand in the way of making the team much better by grabbing a guy like Pietrangelo.

Case against: The Golden Knights are not one of the best teams in the league at the center position. Moving Stastny would take them from below average to bottom three at that position. His scoring was a bit down but he also shuffled around the lineup a lot to allow for guys like Glass and Karlsson to have better fits. The team struggled with finishing rebounds, and unless some other guys improve mightily this offseason, Stastny remains one of the best options to do it. Moving him would put massive pressure on Roy and Glass and that’s got to be concerning considering just how little we’ve seen of both.

William Karlsson
$5.9 million (7 seasons remaining)

Case for: Karlsson was a top-line center when the Golden Knights were playing a high-octane, transition brand of hockey. But now that they aren’t, he’s really more of a dominant defensive 2C. DeBoer’s system has taken away a lot of what Karlsson does best which makes him far less valuable to the team now than he was under Gallant. $5.9 million is a high-price for a guy who mustered up just 10 points in 20 games in the playoffs and had just three points in the final 11 postseason games. After his brilliant 2017-18 campaign and strong regular seasons in 18-19 and 19-20, someone would likely be willing to step up big time to take him off Vegas’ hands. If you can get a 1st round pick plus for him, he might be better suited playing under a coach who fits his style better, plus the cap relief for the next seven years would be huge in signing a guy like Pietrangelo.

Case against: The hardest position to come by in the NHL is center. When you have good ones, even if he’s not one of the 10 best in the league, you don’t give them up. Karlsson has the most goals in the history of the franchise and the second-most points, just one behind Marchessault. He’s also a dominant force on the penalty-kill and will be in Selke consideration every year he plays. Yes, the possession style of play isn’t the optimal way to use him, but DeBoer can surely find a way to take advantage of his unique skill set. If the Golden Knights give away Karlsson, they’ll have the worst collection of centers in the entire NHL, and that’s not hyperbole. You simply can’t win that way.

Alex Tuch
$4.75 million (6 seasons remaining)

Case for: There aren’t many guys out there like Tuch, which means his price on the trade market would likely be massive. Throw in his manageable contract and he’s the exact type of piece a majority of the teams in the NHL are looking for. Here in Vegas, he’s shown glimpses of greatness, but it’s always been somewhat fleeting. It would be a risky move but the return would be enormous and the Golden Knights probably have the depth to overcome his departure.

Case against: When he’s on, he’s the most dangerous weapon the Golden Knights have. He spent most of the 19-20 season injured and then in the playoffs he was a dominant force that made his $4.75 million contract look like a joke now, imagine what it will look like when he’s 28-years-old instead of 24. Vegas got him locked in to a good deal and they can’t give up on him before he’s ever truly given the opportunity to flourish in a top-six role for a full season. The Golden Knights are severely lacking players in the 22-25 year-old-age group. Tuch is one and a damn good one at that, they can’t afford to give him away.

Reilly Smith
$5 million AAV (2 seasons remaining)

Case for: The best argument for trading Smith would be in the immense value he should return. His contract is certainly not inflated based on his production and he continued to thrive even after the coaching change which means he should be expected to keep it up next season whether for Vegas or not. If a team calls and offers a NHL-ready high-end prospect still on his ELC or multiple high picks, VGK would have to listen. It would have to absolutely blow them away though, which is unlikely, especially in this offseason.

Case against: If it’s not Mark Stone, Smith is the obvious next choice to be the captain. He’s coming off a massive year and has played great in all three seasons as a Golden Knight. He’s excellent in all situations and his defense will always shine through even on the days the offense isn’t there with it (which is rare). There are plenty of ways to shake up the Golden Knights’ top-six, Smith shouldn’t be seriously considered as one of them.

Nate Schmidt
$5.95 million (5 seasons remaining)

Case for: This postseason was a good example of why it’s a bit risky to rely on Schmidt to be placed in a role where he’s shouldering the majority of defensive responsibility against the opposition’s best players. Plus, his offensive game kind of went out the window in the postseason, especially in the final eight games when VGK needed it most. He just doesn’t seem like the perfect fit for the style DeBoer prefers which makes his near $6 million cap hit a bit high for what may become the team’s third-best defensemen. People around the league know Schmidt and understand how easily he’ll integrate into any locker room. They’ve also seen him play #1 pair minutes for a team that went to the Stanley Cup. He should fetch a nice return even as devastating as it would be to see him go.

Case against: Nate’s postseason was not exactly what we’ve grown accustomed to out of Schmidt as a Golden Knight. He’s consistently been one of Vegas’ best defenseman, has the flexibility to play either side, is loved by absolutely everyone, and remains on a contract that’s not overpriced now and shouldn’t be at any point during it. He soaked up over 23:00 a game in the playoffs despite not playing significant time on either special team. He’s just too reliable to give away, especially after a troubling postseason when the return might be lower than it otherwise should be.

Alec Martinez
$4 million (1 season remaining)

Case for: While Martinez was an excellent fit for Shea Theodore, wouldn’t anyone have been? The cap number is high enough that he can probably be replaced with someone at a lesser cost and not see a ton of drop off. He fetched two 2nds at the deadline and played well on his new team, which means he should get at least one pick back this offseason. Unless he’s willing to take less than half of what he’s currently making on his next deal, Vegas may only have one season left of Martinez, so why not cash in now before he walks for nothing?

Case against: Vegas paid two 2nd round picks to get Martinez in here to stabilize the defense and he did just that. There’s no question the team was better after they acquired him than before and the cap hit isn’t crazy for the amount of time he spends on the ice. He was awesome with Theodore and likely will be for the entirety of the 2020-21 season as well. Martinez was also the third-highest player in ATOI during the playoffs for the Golden Knights, he’s simply too valuable to this defense to cut bait after one playoff run.

Brayden McNabb
$2.5 million (2 seasons remaining)

Case for: This offseason is going to be unlike any in the past as the cap is staying flat not only for now but for the foreseeable future. That makes a player like Brayden McNabb more valuable on the market than he’s ever been before. There’s really not a massive benefit to the Golden Knights to trade him, but if a team who is trying to shed salary but stay competitive calls, they might throw out an offer that’s too good to resist.

Case against: In an offseason where Vegas is looking to create cap space to upgrade, trading one of the most cost-effective players on the roster would be pretty stupid. McNabb’s $2.5 million contract is what’s keeping the already slightly pricey defense from getting out of control. He’s not the perfect defenseman, but at that price, he should be close to untouchable.

Shea Theodore
$5.2 million (5 seasons remaining)

Case for: There’s not one.

Case against: $5.2 million for a 25-year-old Norris caliber defenseman with five more years of control… you trade that, you should be fired before the trade call is completed.

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81 Comments

  1. james

    Stasnty needs to go. Schmidt is so over rated. How many times can he miss the puck at the blueline during a powerplay. Oh Schmidty not again. Trade both of them to sabres for ristolainen.

    • Seamus Byrne

      you did not just mention Ristolainen… He has some of if not THE worst analytics in the entire NHL he is not an upgrade.

  2. Jake

    Would signing a guy like Pietrangelo take away from the development of Shea? Yeah he can learn from Pietrangelo but it’s gonna take away top PP time and top line pairing

    • I don’t think so at all. Shea never played in the top pair for VGK, he’s always been sheltered in an offensive role. As for the PP, Shea will still get the same amount of time no matter who they sign, he’s that good.

  3. Chase

    Forwards that need to be traded are Stastny and Marsh it’s as simple as that, you all can figure out why that is I’m not arguing with any Vegas fan that truly doesn’t understand the sport.

    Defenseman that need to be traded is Schmidt, yes McNabb should be mentioned but at just 2.5mil he’s worth it to keep but wouldn’t be mad if both were traded.

    And the obvious is Fleury needs to be traded to thanks for the memories to all and best of luck going forward. Remember the NHL is a business and it’s all about winning the franchise will always do what’s best for the team, it’s not about feelings and what nonsense fans don’t want to let go of. Best of luck to the season ahead!

    • Daryl

      That really worked out well with Lehner this year didn’t it. He had some really good games but also some bad ones, especially when it mattered the most. I’m ok with letting MAF go, but I don’t think Lehner is the answer either.

      • Doug MacLeod

        Please identify the bad games when it mattered! 7 goals in 5 games vs Dallas gave them a chance to win every night!

        • Dean

          A save percentage of under 90% in the final 3 games of the year. That’s a goalie that will never get you to the promised land! He’s not a Stanley Cup goalie and that’s why he’s never gotten the contract. If we are stupid enough to give him the long term deal, we’ll never see it in the near future either.

          • Rich Santomauro

            I agree Dean. The Panda is not the real deal. He played 3 regular season games and the playoffs. We know Fleury, and it is sad that the front office lost their collective minds over that one 5 minute major penalty in round 2 of the playoffs last year. VGK front office completely shook the locker room upside down and inside out over it. Let’s stop the madness. Fleury is good for 2 more seasons. Find a great young goalie talent and do what is necessary to try and upgrade this team. I see Marchy and Stasny as 2 likely candidates. Can we get Peitrangelo and move Stasny and one other player? Marchy and Stasny probably gives you the cap space, but I would hate to see him go.

        • Daryl

          As Dean pointed out, his save % was not very good in several games. He may not necessarily had an entire bad game but he let several soft goals in especially at times when we really needed a save.

          • Louis Gregory

            At least half of the goals that he gave up were either freak deflections or the defense leaving him out to dry. I love MAF, but if you want to beat up numbers, I think he had career lows in every category.

          • Daryl

            Come on Louis…. half his goals were either freak goals or left out to dry??? Are you talking about his headbutt where he knocked the puck into his own goal? Thats not a freak deflection, thats just a bad play by the goalie. Sorry, but I have to disagree with you here. Lehner made some great saves and yes our defense was not very good, but Lehner let him some very weak goals. How many times did the broadcasters say “I bet Lehner would want that one back?” I’m one of the biggest critics of our defense on here but they were no more responsible then Lehner was

          • Neal

            You realize Lehner’s overall save percentage for the playoffs was .917? You realize his goals against was 1.99? You realize the games we lost in the playoffs to Dallas that the total score was 9 to 5. We scored 5 goals in 5 games of the WCF. You don’t win playoff games in this era by scoring 1 goal per game. I have news for you, every single goalie lets in soft goals. Lehner is an outstanding goaltender in his prime. He is a definite Vezina caliber goaltender. Marc Andre Fleury is well past his prime and had a very average season. He is on the decline and can’t be the goaltender that VGK relies on over the next 2-4 season window we now have.

            All you “keep MAF people” are thinking with your heart not your head. We have a Stanley Cup caliber team. These chances do not come along very often at all. Once this window closes it could be 20 years or more before we have a chance like this again.

            We don’t need defense especially for $8/million a season (great idea lock up two players long term that add up to over $17 million a season, we already kinda screwed the pooch with Stone and that crazy contract for a guy who absolutely disappeared when we needed him the most) we need someone who can put the puck in the net. It has been, and is our biggest problem. We have no legitimate top end goal scorers with the exception of Pachioretty who is definitely past his prime.

            We need to lock up Lehner, trade out Marchy and Stastny, and land the best goal scorer we can get for the cap space available. That’s your Cup winning team.

          • Daryl

            Neal…. If Lehner is such a great catch then why is he floating around from team to team? And I didn’t say VGK b/c of him…. He is just very inconsistent. He had some great games with high saves then some bad games with very easy missed saves

          • Dean

            Lehner is a good goalie by statistics only. However, a goalie influences the style of play by the team as well. When he’s in net, VGK turns into a much more defensive team. We might give up less shots and goals, but we don’t score as much either. Other teams have learned that and this is why he’s bounced around and not gotten a long term contract. Unfortunately, DeBoer has fallen in love with him and we likely will lose a lot of 1-0, 2-1 and 3-2 games in the next 5 years while never winning the Cup all of us fans crave.

  4. Ken – interesting stuff but do you truly believe Pietrangelo is a solution to anything at 8 to 9 million for X number of years? According to some Fluery is washed up ( excuse me not as valuable at 36) what in heavens name is mgt thinking about a guy who gets banged around going to be worth at 37+( as I recall contract is for 8 years and he is 30 now). They have a 9 million assest (?) in Stone not sure they need another. It is difficult to believe there aren’t better alternatives and ways to spend the money. Not sure it is necessary for the Splash Brothers to make a big splash – some smaller ones are in order and will pay bigger rewards.

    Chase – hockey is a big business and yes what’s in the best interest of the team is critical and Mr. Foley is obviously a smart businessman who I am certain equates investment to return (ROI) so it will be interesting to see how everything plays out.

    • Yeah I like the Pietrangelo option. I think this team needs a bit of a shakeup, that’s the best one out there this offseason.

      • Ken – I don’t think there is any disagreement concerning a shakeup but 8 to 9 million for someone that old is a stretch when you have other alternatives. I can assure you IMO one guy is not going to make VGK any better than what they currently are and I go back to Stone – did he make that big a difference – questionable at best. Just a question – is Stone worth 3 mill a year more than some of the other players – do you think some of the players are asking that same question and you want to add another. You are probably smarter than I but I just see the ROI – in fact in some regard knowing people as I do it may be a negative. I don’t see any difference between Piet and Lehner as being the solution and winning the Cup anytime soon. All to do with ROI.

    • Chase

      Good take hdbiker, I’m not saying we need AP either I’d rather pass on him trade the players that need to be traded, and as you said fill it it with solid players for example if Marsh is traded the perfect replacement would be someone like Dadanov he would flourish in Vegas… besides I’m hoping they make a run at trading for Laine or Eichel that’s what they need it’ll cost a lot but either would be worth it, Laine a pure scorer so lethal on PP and Eichel super young center that was on his way to his first 40 goal season plus they young, you could have either one for 10+years. Anyway I know moves will be made as GM and Kelly will always be active and Vegas is in win now mode. AP would help but we don’t need him, we will see what happens

      • SW

        For someone so smart you don’t even know our players! We have never had a “Marsh”. We have a Marchessault (Marchie). Some of us might have too many stupid feelings but at least we know the names of the players!

        • Everyone knew who he meant – picking fly sh-t out of pepper accounts for the stupid feeling apparently

        • Daryl

          We never had a “Marchie” either…. we had a Marchessault. Who’s to say others don’t have different nicknames for players and who are to say their nickname isn’t correct. It was obvious who he was talking about so what was the point of your post???

          • SW

            What’s the point of yours?

          • SW

            I took offense to Chase’s comment as follows:

            Remember the NHL is a business and it’s all about winning the franchise will always do what’s best for the team, it’s not about feelings and what nonsense fans don’t want to let go of. Best of luck to the season ahead.

            What he considers “nonsense fans don’t want to let go of” is what the team meant to this city after Oct. 1, 2017. A large share of VGK fans love the team like they do because of that. It is a real thing. It is not nonsense! My point in my original post was that if he is such a high and mighty know-it-all fan why can’t he even get the nickname right! Marchessault is the one who chose “Marchie”, not Marsh. If he wants to pick at other fans, I will pick back. I’m done now.

          • Daryl

            LOLOLOLOL If you say so

  5. the hockey god

    keep tuch, mcnab, theodore, smith and 71 ; the rest have to go

    • Chasen

      Agree significant change is needed the only one I’d argue over is Max and that’s all depending what they can get for him, if it’s worth it do it but if not I’d hold on to him but such a trade as Max, a young center, and pick for Laine comes up I take that trade and build team around Stone, Laine, Shea, Robin

      • Daryl

        I’m not so sure Laine will flourish at Vegas. Don’t think Lehner is the answer in net either. As for Stone, at his price, he should be a lot better but he doesn’t look good playing PDB style either.

  6. Tom Thorne

    Karlsson has been a big disappointment. He had a great first season, but hasn’t done much since. He’s a good player, but not in DeBoer’s style. The Flower is past his prime. He’s a good back up now. Not worth the multi million multi year contract though.

  7. ulf

    McNabb, Marsh and Stastny. I’d throw Patch in there too but one more year might make sense.
    McNabb was a pylon in the playoffs, Marsh’s anger issues are interfering with his play, the Stastny move would have been great 5 years ago but it was a bad signing when it happened and it’s worse now.
    I like Tuch and Theodore, when they get exposed by going higher up the lineup (especially in Tuch’s case) there will be an adjustment but still good ones to keep.
    I’m not convinced AP wants to come to Vegas.

  8. Sam Smith

    How bout just trade DeBoer. Deep playoff unmotivated players, just like the sharks. Vgk was better than dallas but they lacked the motivation. I blame coaching for this.

    • Daryl

      Agreed…. VGK brings in a coach with a different coaching style that doesn’t fit a majority of his players. So instead of switching coaches, which would be easier and cheaper, VGK will need to ship out a majority of their players

    • Edy (eee-fee)Gaudioso

      Couldn’t AGREE MORE with you! Keep all our guys. Flower still has more in the tank and PDB should have let him play more or at least equal to Lehner. I say we find a new coach cuz our players are talented enough and have enough chemistry to win it all. IMO bringing in Lehner at the time they did hurt the team in the end

  9. Hague_for_Norris

    For me it’s pretty simple you go after a top 6 power forward and a top 4 RD I don’t get Ken’s obsession with Pietrangelo our defense isn’t the problem. I’m not saying Pietrangelo wouldn’t make an impact (he would) I just think it’s irresponsible to waste valuable cap space. Go after a top 6 power forward such as Anders Lee and trade for or sign a top 4 RD such as Damon Severson, Tyson Barrie, or Travis Hamonic. That’s what will make this team better not an elite top-pairing D-man (which we have)

    • Daryl

      Who is this top-pairing D-man you speak of??? Our defense has a lot of holes in it and we need at least 2 more good blue liners. Whether it be an AHL player ready to step up or adding more depth, but we need a top pairing D-man from somewhere

      • Hague_for_Norris

        You are joking, right? We have a player better then Petro in Theodore and it’s an unnecessary waste of cap space and yes we do have holes in our D that’s why you trade or sign for a good 2nd pairing guy like Severson.

        • Daryl

          Sorry, I misunderstood your response…. I took pairing as two defensive pairings not a single player. I do think Theo could be a top pairing blue liner but he needs help to make it there. I love his offense but he lacks on the defensive side especially if its against bigger and stronger players. Find him a counterpart (Martinez was close) and I would move him to the top line.

  10. Tim

    Ok before I start we have to get over what we paid for players who haven’y worked out to our expectations the following have got to see Vegas in the rear view mirror.
    Stantsy an obvious choice to move 36 years old. Marshie like I’ve said he’s on the down slide got to go. McNabb like Marshie is a penalty machine got to go. No reason to keep Holden easily replaced in house. Now the painful one good old Max Patch what a disaster but it’s time to move on and cut bait.

    Players on Ken’s list to keep in my opinion.

    Alex Tuch big and fast definite upside. Willian Karlsson smart two way player with a high IQ. Riley Smith like Karlsson good two way player with a high IQ. I like smart players they think and react quicker neither comment many penalties. I think Nate Schmidt still has a lot of upside he’s just in a funk I think if we get Alex Pietrangelo and they team them up he’ll be fine. Martinez for one year playing with Theadore will be OK. The Splash Brothers paid to much for him another Splash Brothers Blue Plate Special.

    Now who should have a chance to make the team and why.

    Cody Glass 21, Payton Krebs 19, Lucas Evelens 20, Jack Dugan 22, Nick Hague 21, Dylan Cochlan 21 you want to get better and younger get these guys in the game.

    Now the guys we trade
    Stantsy 36, Marchie 29, Holden 32, McNabb 27, Patch 31, Fleury 35 .
    Tell me by getting younger were losing that much. Like I said we’ll be younger faster and at 75 my window with the Knights is wide open until I head to the barn.

    • Ulf

      Those are exactly the players I’d move too – Vegas did the classic overpay for vets on the downside with Sastny and Patch (maybe one good year then the slow descent in Patch’s case, and boy the penalties…), and the “patch”-work D the Knights have had since the beginning.

      The window feels like it’s not as open as it once was. With a few of the old guys out and some patience (and maybe a new coach) Vegas will once again be on the upswing.

      Not sure what happens with the goalies TBH. Weird situation.

      • Mike StG

        Ulf, not sure which Patch you’re referring to. The one who this year scored 32 goals, was nearly a PPG player and +18 in a season shortened by 11 games? And at the same time laid crushing hits regularly on the opposition?

        • Edy Gaudioso

          Just cuz patches didn’t play well in playoffs(due to injury) is no reason to yell “trade”. He’s a keeper for sure!

        • Edy Gaudioso

          Just cuz Patchesdidn’t play well in playoffs(due to injury) is no reason to yell “trade”. He’s a keeper for sure!

        • Ulf

          Yup, he of the 8 points in 16 post-season games, that’s the one.

          I watched him play for years on the Habs and come post-season, there was always something off. With the exception of last year, look at his stats.
          I like him as a player, but the fact is he’s turning 32 this month and he’s on the books for $7m for another 3 years.
          He’ll do just fine next year in the regular season, then when the playoffs hit he’ll take too many penalties early, then go off his game, then go cold. Like with Stastny, the Knights will have to live with him past his best before date.

          On the other hand, his value is probably as high as it’s going to get right now. If you move him now to fix the center ice or defense positions, and snag a guy like Alex Kilorn for $3m cheaper (Tampa has to shed salary and he’s rumored), there’s one option that might make sense. Tyler Toffoli would be the best fit, but he’s probably staying in Vancouver.

          If h is career is any indicator, Patch will be fine in the regular season then you wonder what happened to him in the postseason. With last year’s exception, that’s what you tend to get.

          • Mike StG

            Ulf, I can see your point but maybe consider that:

            Last year Patch had 5G & 11 points in 7 games. Not bad, as you pointed out.

            This year is not comparable to any prior experience. A 5-month pause, 2 week training camp, the fact he was injured and didn’t make it into the bubble to play any of the round robin games – so effectively he didn’t play an actual game for 6 months and then went straight into the playoff rounds not fully healthy and then suffered multiple added injuries.

            Last, I don’t think comparing his play with the Habs is useful, as the teams, line mates, etc all were unique to those playoffs. I think he’s our best scorer and a good player to have in the room. He and Stone are a force on the ice. IMO when Stastny plays with them they’re an extremely dangerous line and can dominate play. I guess we will see whether they get better the longer they play together.

  11. Let go of Statsny, Merril, Engo, and Cousin. Keep everyone else, including lehner and MAF. We will be under the cap and ready to go for another cup run

    PS. Reilly for Captain!

    • Daryl

      First, I like Smith as the Captain. I think he is one of the hardest workers on the team.

      Secondly not sure what PDB will do with Merrill. I personally don’t think he is as good as Engo. Now I don’t see them resigning Engo but either way his salary pretty much had no effect on the salary cap. Merrill is probably around 1.5. I have no idea off the top of my head on Cousins. As most know I am a fan of Engo. I wouldn’t him sticking around for one more season. I think he is just as good as Holden and better than Merrill, Hague, Bischoff or any of the others. And like I said he’s a base salary player. Again I don’t see it happening but it makes more since IMO to keep him over someone like Merrill. Could even use some of those other younger players for trades

  12. SB

    Vegas can’t do muh because of the Cap and really shouldn’t. First, It’s a pipe dream Lehner’s signing five years, $5 million. Absolute pipe dream. He’ll end up with $7 to $9 million somewhere else. Fluery will be back for at least one more year. Will need a backup. Don’t need to overpay Pietrangelo $9 mil for the next 8 seasons. Why pay a guy for the past – the years from here go downhill. Biggest problem: missing that top flight center between Stone and Pac and Centers who can win faceoffs, particularly on the PP in the offensive zone. Pathetic at losing faceoffs. Losing 40 seconds of PP time due to losing the draw. Stastny’s the problem and a problem at $6.5 mil that’s gonna be hard to move. Bite the bullet …….. go after Eichel. Tuch, Stastny, two firsts and either Glass of Roy. But Eichel between Stone and Pac alongwith Line A2 in tact. Because of the Cap, you’re not gonna get it all.

    • SB – just a question who in their right mind do you think will give Lehner a 7 to 9 million contract given teams he has been associated with who have walked away from him? Based on some of the posts to this site maybe you are just throwing that out as bait to determine who else is crazy. I seriously question the logic of 5 mill for 5 years as I am a ROI individual type just like I don’t see 8 to 9 mill for Pietrangelo. Neither of these guys will significantly change VGKs enough, if at all, to justify that type of expenditure. Tuch is not going anywhere at this point and why would you believe Buffalo would let Eichel go? I know its not a popular observation concerning Glass but he seems to be a little injury prone which for his sake I hope is behind him, that said the Knights are probably concerned as well. You are right because of the Cap it makes things interesting and like you said you’re not going to get it all.

      • Tim

        hdbiker, I’ve been against Pietrangelo for price and especially term 5 years I could live with but he wants more tell him to go elsewhere. I disagree with you on Lehner I don’t think anyone will pay him 7 to 9 million if he doesn’t sign with us life will go on.

      • sb

        Ever hear of the guy named Sergei Bobrovsky? He was the last big name goaltender signed by the Panthers last year. How much? Ten million for 7 years. That’s what Top 10 goaltenders are paid. Lehner’s agent makes the case: if my guy is replacing a goalie making $7 mil, why would you – Mgt – expect him to take less? It’s called logic. It’s the marketplace. There are 4 Top 10 goalies who are free agents this season. All will get contracts above $7 mil because that’s the floor.

        • Mike StG

          DB – you are slightly off in your claims. There are only 2 goalies in the league that make $10M (Price & Bob). Vasi is $9.5. The next closest is $8.5, Hank who just got bought out. I think Fleury is next at 7M. There are at least 8 or 9 starting goalies who are UFAs as of Oct 9th, so between the cap freeze, financial uncertainty for teams, the glut of available goalies and the Seattle expansion draft that is playing into goalie decisions/contracts, it’s unlikely ANY goalie gets overpaid this year. TFP (Dave Pagnotta) reported the 5×5 agreement between Vegas & Lehner and he is not the type to report rumors, only info about which he has solid and usually multiple confirmations.

          • Mike StG

            Check that- not DB, I meant SB…

          • sb

            Incorrect. Sergei Bobrovsky signed a 7 year, $70 million contract with the Florida Panthers on July 1, 2019. Do the math.

        • Mike StG

          Sb – let me explain in more detail. Only Price and Bob (aka Bobrovsky) make $10M annually (otherwise referred to as AAV). Nobody refers to salaries for purposes of cap discussions in total value. Bob does have a 7yr, $7M contract. The math on that is $10M AAV. Price gets $10.5M AAV, Vasilevskiy is at 9.5M AAV, Lundqvist is 8.5M. Top 10 goalies do NOT make $10M a year – only 2 goalies in the league do. One makes 9.5, and the NYR just bought out Lundqvist’s last year at 8.5M. Your estimation of Lehner’s or any UFA goalie’s projected contract amount is way too high.

      • sb

        Because as Bob McKenzie reported, Eichel may have asked for a trade. Sept 28th. The Rangers have made inquires re: a trade.

  13. Mike StG

    Reading the posts a couple of things should be noted:
    1) several of the players mentioned as players to pursue are not available. Eichel is not available, Anders Lee is signed. Several are not a good fit or replacement – Laine has a great shot but Patch does also, had more goals & points plus he’s a good defender. No real financial benefit to that trade, plus Jets will want either a Top 2 center or Top 4 D in exchange.
    2) Suggesting that they trade a player doesn’t mean any team will be a willing partner. You wanna trade Stastny 1 yr/6.5M – who takes that contract in this market? Teams aren’t going to assume bad contracts just to facilitate deals. Budgets are too tight. So, to suggest they trade several core players is not serious.

    Unless Vegas makes a blockbuster multiplayer (and possibly multi team) deal, it’s most likely that trades other than goalie will be more like tweaking around the margins.

    • Rob S.

      Mike, be careful; you’re being too thoughtful and using too much logic for the “burn the roster to the ground because we didn’t win the Stanley Cup” crowd. Isn’t the real question–after we “solve” the goaltender issue–strategically, what kind of game do the “powers-that-be” (that would be “The Creator” as Ken terms him, the “Splash Brothers”–to use Tim’s excellent nickname–and our ex-Sharks coach) want to play going forward?

      If we’re really going to play “ground-and-pound,” heavy, slow, “half-court offense,” (editorial comment: yuck!) the “powers” are going to have trash the current roster because it’s not built to support that style of play. If they still want to play a faster, more transition-oriented game some tactical tinkering (assuming PDB can do that) and some changes on the margins of the roster (yes, including letting some of the “kids” play bigger roles) may be enough.

      As to bringing in some “greasy, gritty, tough in front of the net types,” just who are we going to get and where are we going to play them? Can you really imagine Pat Maroon (who, btw, is already 32 years old) on the first or second line? And as for Wayne Simmonds…ugh! Don’t even get me started.

      The goaltender decision is big, but it’s tactical. (I would suggest that either of our current netminders give us a good chance to win…next year.) The “what kind of game are we going to play” decision is strategic and speaks to how we are going to perform for years to come–and how long our presumed “Stanley Cup window” is going to remain open.

      • Tim

        It looks like were all on the same page first settle the goalie situation. Second trade Stantsy one year on his contract a number 2 center should be movable. After that I’m sure we’ll disagree on the next moves. For me Marshie would be my next move he’s going to be 30 and I think his best days are behind him. As a second line forward we should get a good draft pick. Why they signed Holden I’m sure mystifies us all he’s cheap maybe we can move him. personally I’m tired of his 80 foot shots that never go in. Now if the Splash Brothers get Pietrangelo which I hope not but you know the boys they love to make a Splash them McNabb is gone maybe a decent draft pick. I’ll let you guys carry on with your thoughts on who should stay and who should go.

        • Mike StG

          Tim, in today’s market Stastny’s 6.5M is pretty expensive. I they replace Marchie it should be with someone like Kubalik or Bobby Ryan – LW power forward. They’d have to offer sheet Kubalik and Ryan openly expressed a desire to play for PHI since his roots are in NJ. So they’re both long shots IMO. If they’re definitely going to move Fleury I’d like to see if they can do a straight Fleury for Dubnyk deal with the Wild. Fleury has known Guerin a long time from his PIT days. And he’d be their starter, which is what he wants – to play. Brooksie suggested Hank might be an option for Vegas. He’s known Lehner since Robin was 11 y/o and Lehner’s dad coached Hank in Sweden. That would be a trip – lose MAF and then sign Hank. Swapping hof-ers.

          • Tim

            Mike yes but for a team that needs a second line center on a one contract @I think is doable but time will tell.

    • Daryl

      I was wondering if there could possibly be a 3 or 4 team deal coming out of all this. That would be really interesting

    • sb

      As Bob McKenzie reported, Sept 28, Eichel may have asked for a trade and the Rangers have inquired. McKenzie is an insider and reputable,

      • Mike StG

        Sb- but 10 minutes after reporting that he followed up by saying there was nothing to the rumor after all. And the Sabres GM also said there was no way that would happen.

  14. Tim – read again my man l don’t think anyone will pay that for lehner so why are you in disagreement. SB thinks someone will pay that not me. I wouldn’t give piet 8 or 9 mill for 5 years either. There are better alternatives.
    .

    • Tim

      Hdbiker I agree with you no one will give Lehner 7 to 9 million. I meant I agree with you the disagreement a senior moment as I was typing.

      • Tim – I gathered as much – but considered suggesting getting new glasses. – enough of this senior moment stuff – it will be around for all of us sooner or later. LOL

        • Tim

          hdbiker well I’ll tell you my friend one day I was 20 just got out of the Army and moved to las Vegas next day I’m 75 so time marches on.

          • Moving Las Vegas could do that to you l guess. No question time certainly flies. Maybe a colder climate would help as l read somewhere things don’t go bad as quickly. Keep smiling

  15. Mike StG

    Tim & Hd – so are you saying we’re the geezers forum? 🙂

    • Tim

      Unless 75 is the new 50 I guess I am a geezer but wise with age at least I hope so.

      • Mike StG

        Tim – we’re in this together! Wish I could be 50 again. I remember getting my first AARP invitation in the mail when I turned 50. I was really ticked off. Now I use the discounts regularly and carry the card in my wallet. Ha!!

  16. Tim

    OK latest flash on Pietrangelo his camp wants 9.2 million a year. Does anybody work for the phone company cut the Splash Brothers line. There just crazy enough to do it and may through in a draft pick. I’m sorry but I don’t trust them anymore first there not honorable and second besides making dumb trades they give draft picks away like candy. I’m to the point don’t trade anyone it could be detrimental to the Knights health. Of coarse we need to trade Fleury unfortunately, Stantsy , Marchie and after that stop the bubble machine bring up our young guys. In truth wouldn’t it be much more fun watching Glass, Krebs, Dugan, and Evelens then I’ll use Mike’s term Geezers.

  17. Mike StG

    Tim – okay, Pietrangelo-who? I just forgot who he was (on purpose). I can get on board with taking the best available player in the entry draft, but not in the UFA free-for-all for the max price. They can take that 9.2mil along with a flying leap. Have fun in Buffalo or Detroit, Piet!

    • Rob S.

      Yeah, he’s not getting 7 years x $9.2 mil from any team with a chance to win the Cup in this flat cap environment. Seven x $7.5 mil maybe but, if they’re serious about $9.2 mil., Mike’s already named the candidates.

      Thanks for admitting me to the Geezer Forum, guys! Still working, but 50 is a ways back in the rear-view mirror. Mike, I laughed at your reaction to receiving an AARP card when you turned 50; my reaction was exactly the same!

      • Tim

        Mike and Rob the Splash Brothers don’t get it but there so desperate to sign a star even though every average fan knows better. Of coarse they could get two quality players at 4 million each with a reasonable term instead of Pietrangelo for a minimum of 8 to 9 million for 7 years . I still want the kids brought up.

      • Mike StG

        Rob, you haven’t been admitted to the geezer forum, you are only a guest. Ha!

        Don’t know if you listen to Strip Hockey podcast (Jesse Granger & Ryan Wallis). They released their latest PC earlier today and discussed potential team signings and acquisitions. I have to admit that maybe I can see some value in signing Piet after all. They’d have to probably trade Martinez and Stastny. The point of trading Stastny is that although risky, if they don’t clear some roster space for Glass when will he ever have a chance to develop at center? He did pretty well early this season between Max&Mark and could probably be fine on a line with them. It’s really sink or swim time for Cody. He was drafted the same year and just after Petersen, Heiskanen and Makar! Also, it makes more sense for Karlsson to be back on a line with Reilly & JM anyway. Next season isn’t Vegas’s last legit chance at the cup, even if Cody doesn’t develop to be the Top 2 center they hoped. If they sign Lehner they’re set in goal for 5 years, and most of their Top 6 and 1st/2nd pair are signed for at least 3 more years. The podcast is worth a listen if you aren’t already subscribed.

        • Rob S.

          Thanks for the tip, Mike; I’ll check out the podcast! I’m still nervous about getting rid of Stastny because: 1) we don’t really have anyone to replace him (Glass may be able to eventually, but I’d be shocked if he’s ready yet); 2) we’d probably have to eat dollars and/or give up more assets; and 3) his cap hit rolls off after next year, anyway. Oh, btw, he actually can–and does–play well in front of the net, too. (Yes, he wasn’t great against Dallas but, again, name one forward who was outside of Tuch.)

  18. Good for you Tim give the kids a chance they may have a similar attitude that the yr one team had and l am sure you remember where that attitude got them. They had something to prove and prove they did.

  19. Mike StG

    Rob, I share your concerns about losing Stastny, which is why I’ve not been open to trading him before now. He’s probably our best forward as far as net front play, and he’s an excellent playmaker. However, after listening to Ryan’s views I think I’m open to them going for Piet as a driver of offense and giving Glass a chance to develop real time at C2 despite the risk. Roy plays so well with Tuch it’s hard to see Glass at 3C, and you don’t want him at 4C grinding it out nightly. So, if he’s not playing on L1 or L2 at center, which is his natural and intended position, then how will they ever develop him? I think they almost have to throw him in the deep end and hope he turns out to be like the kid who was drafted just before him in ‘17 (Pettersen). There was an article I read recently that also explained how Vegas makes it easy for forwards to play the center position, thus negating the requirement for elite players to be effective in that role. I think that’s informing my opinion as well.

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