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Golden Knights Prospect Rankings – October 4th, 2023

Most of the rookies have been sent to where they will play for this season and we were able to get a good look at many of them. So, it’s time for an update to the SinBin Prospect Rankings.

Six players dropped out of the rankings, the most ever, leaving just 22 skaters and five goalies in the system. A familiar face has risen back to #1 while a newcomer checks in at #2.

**To view the full SinBin Prospect Rankings including the criteria used to rank the players, click here.**

Criteria to qualify for rankings:

  • Must be younger than 23 years old for skaters, 25 years old for goalies
  • Cannot have played more than 10 NHL games
  • Must be either under contract or drafted by the Golden Knights

Players are ranked based on value to the organization. The most important factor is the player’s ceiling, or how good they can eventually become, but also taken into consideration is how close they are to playing in the NHL and how likely they are to play in the NHL. This is NOT a ranking of which players are the best if a game were to be held today.

Recently Removed: Zach Dean (Trade), Ivan Morozov (Loan), Pavel Dorofeyev (NHL Experience), Peter Diliberatore (Trade), Connor Corcoran (Age), Ryder Donovan (Age)


(Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

1) Brendan Brisson (F)
Acquired: 2020 Entry Draft, 1st Round, #29 overall
Age: 21 (October 22, 2001)
Most Recent Team: Henderson Silver Knights (AHL)
Previous Ranking: 2

The VGK coaching staff has gotten a good hard look at Brisson this offseason and it definitely seems as if they like what they are seeing. He’ll probably still need some seasoning in the NHL, especially when it comes to stick and physical battles, but he will play NHL games this season.

More on Brisson
2/11/23 – Ranking: 2 – Brisson’s first full year as a professional has not gone the way he and the Golden Knights wished. He’s not scoring at the pace expected for a 1st round pick sniper, and his physical game hasn’t matched the level of the AHL level to this point. 19 points including seven goals simply isn’t good enough in 37 AHL games. He still has the elite shot, and he still has some high-end vision with the puck, but there still needs to be quite a bit of improvement if he wants to become the player the Golden Knights expected when they picked him 29th overall.

8/16/22 – Ranking: 2 – It would have been great to have seen more out of Brisson at Development Camp. He didn’t score a goal in the scrimmages and aside from his well-known elite one-timer, he didn’t pop as the only 1st round pick on the ice. Often times players aren’t quite themselves in the summer, especially after a long season. So it’s possible he comes into Rookie Camp, lights it up, and claims a spot. But as of right now, he still appears to need some professional seasoning in the AHL.

2/23/22 – Ranking: 1 – Brisson has shot up this chart in large part due to his stellar sophomore season at Michigan but also his inclusion and impact on Team USA at the Olympics. Brisson continues to be dangerous on the power play, and his hockey sense has started to shine through. He’s not afraid to stick his nose into traffic to grab a loose puck and he has a good knack for where loose pucks are going to end up. When chaos happens, Brisson is usually there to clean it up. He continues to look like a bonafide NHL prospect with a ceiling in the top six.

8/7/21 – Ranking: 4 – Brisson had a solid freshman season at Michigan scoring 10 goals and adding 21 points in 24 games. He’s a power play weapon and will continue to be a point producer at the NCAA level this season. However, with Michigan’s stacked lineup, his playing time will be interesting to monitor. Michigan had four of the top five picks in the 2021 Draft and all are expected to be on the roster this year. As a late 1st round pick from the year prior, Brisson should be able to hold down a permanent spot, but we’re definitely going to learn a lot about him as to where coach Mel Pearson has him in that stacked lineup.

2/3/21 – Ranking: 3 – Brisson’s selection to the eventual gold medal-winning Team USA at the World Juniors was incredibly impressive considering how stacked that team was. He offers something unlike anything we’ve seen from a VGK prospect to this point and that’s an unbelievable shot. He loves to sit in the circle on the power play and rip shots past goalies who know it’s coming and still can’t stop it. He definitely has a ways to go in regards to strength and experience and the offensive play can improve in other areas aside from the shot, but there’s no doubt Brisson has an exciting future.


2) David Edstrom (F)
Acquired: 2023 Entry Draft, 1st Round, #32 overall
Age: 18 (February 18, 2005)
Most Recent Team: Frolunda (SHL)
Previous Ranking: N/A

As an 18-year-old Edstrom has slotted right into professional hockey and he’s already producing. He has 6 points in 7 games and is a mainstay in the Frolunda lineup. He’s a big strong kid who is a good skater for his size. He’s aggressive on the ice and willing to push people around (or out of the way) to get to where he needs to go. As one of two remaining 1st round picks in the VGK system, the upside on Edstrom is definitely as exciting as any prospect in the pool.


(Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

3) Layton Ahac (D)
Acquired: 2019 Entry Draft, 3rd Round, #86 overall
Age: 22 (February 22, 2001)
Most Recent Team: Henderson Silver Knights (AHL)
Previous Ranking: #6

Ahac showed up yet again this summer and training camp and has put himself in the hat as a potential NHL call up this year. He looked every bit the part of an NHL defenseman in the preseason and was calm and collected in all of the rookie games. He’ll need to take some steps offensively if he’s ever going to be a majorly impactful player, but there appear to be NHL games in his future.

More on Ahac
2/1/23 – Ranking: 6 – The biggest riser of any prospect on this update is Ahac. The main reason for this rise was his play at Training Camp when he went up against his NHL teammates. Ahac impressed much more than he ever has both with his composure in the defensive zone and his puck-moving skills. He’d always been thought of as a defense-first d-man but there is definitely more to his game when he’s around more skilled players. The numbers haven’t been there in the AHL (4 points in 34 games) which is concerning, but he didn’t look discernably different than Korczak and Kaedan is knocking at the door of being an NHL regular.

8/16/22 – Ranking: 22 – Coming into camp as one of the older players it was expected that we’d finally start to see what made Ahac a 3rd round pick. There wasn’t much to show for it aside from sound positioning and proper decision-making in the defensive zone. He’s probably not physically imposing enough to make it to the NHL on defense alone, so that offensive touch is going to have to come at some point.

2/23/22 – Ranking: 16 – Ahac has been battling through an injury that kept him out for the majority of the first half of the season. He’s finally gotten himself into the lineup but hasn’t made a huge impact at the AHL level. His skating looks good, especially in going back to get pucks, but there will likely need to be a little more willingness to jump into the play if he’s going to become an NHL player.

8/7/21 – Ranking: 15 – Scouting stay-at-home defensemen is always going to be tough, and that’s the case with Ahac. He actually flashed a lot more of an offensive game on different viewings I had, but he’s certainly not going to be labeled as an offensive-minded defenseman any time soon. Like Pachal, there’s probably a bit more of a role of him this season. Can he climb the depth chart?

2/3/21 – Ranking: 15 – Unlike the player ahead of him at this point (Diliberatore), he needed to go back to college to continue developing on both ends of the ice. Scoring as a defenseman at the NCAA level is tricky, and Ahac still likely projects as more of a defense-first option. He has one goal and six assists in 17 games, numbers that would need to improve if he’s going to stake his claim as a high-end prospect he was hoped to be as a 3rd round selection.

4/16/20 – Ahac disappointed a bit at the Fortress Invitational in Vegas and didn’t make much noise as a freshman at Ohio St. However, there’s no way that should mean it’s time to write him off. His skating ability alone is worth keeping him on the radar and he should get better and better as he progresses through his college career. It might be a while until we see him in Vegas, even in the AHL, but if he can develop the way the Golden Knights envisioned, he has the tools to be a solid player.

11/16/19 – Ahac has cemented himself as a staple in the Ohio State defense, which is impressive as a freshman. Statistically, he’s not going to blow you out of the water, but Ahac is a very good defense-first defenseman. He and the Buckeyes will be at T-Mobile Arena for the Fortress Invitational in early January.

7/5/19 – The tall, skinny, defenseman is headed to Ohio State to play college hockey this year, but he sure impressed in camp before leaving. His skating was impressive, his poise was excellent, and his passing from the defensive zone was suburb. I would have liked to see a little more jump to his offensive game, but in a first camp, as a 3rd round pick defenseman, he looked pretty darn good.


4) Jackson Hallum (F)
Acquired: 2020 Entry Draft, 3rd Round, #91 overall
Age: 21 (September 8, 2002)
Most Recent Team: University of Michigan (NCAA)
Previous Ranking: 10

Yet again, Hallum was one of the most exciting players on the ice at Development Camp. His speed and playmaking jump off the page to whoever is watching and it definitely appears he’s starting to truly understand how to play at a speed quicker than everyone else on the ice. He needs a big college season though to keep the upward momentum. It didn’t happen last year, maybe it will this year.

More on Hallum
2/11/23 – Ranking: 10 – Hallum was impressive in Rookie Camp and the hope was that his speed would help him dominate games in college. That hasn’t quite come to life in his freshman year at Michigan as he’s scored just four goals and added eight assists in 26 games. There has to be more to his game than speed, hopefully, that happens in the next few years at Michigan.

2/23/22 – Ranking: 7 – Everyone knows Jackson Hallum can skate like the wind. That was on display for anyone and everyone to see once again at his first Development Camp. The question was whether or not he could do anything offensively with a gear faster than everyone else on the ice. He didn’t exactly light the scoreboard up, but time and time again he was putting defenders in bad positions either creating scoring chances or drawing penalties. There’s a lot to be excited about for a kid getting ready to make a significant leap in competition this season as he heads to Michigan.

2/23/22 – Ranking: 13 – Moving up a level hasn’t seemed to slow down Hallum, either physically in his skating or in his scoring. There’s always going to be a concern as he continues to progress to tougher levels, but 49 points in 41 games is nothing to scoff at in the USHL. The penalty numbers are a bit odd though as he’s taken 70 PIM this season. Will be interesting to see if he remains this type of pest.

8/7/21 – Ranking: 12 – Yet again, Hallum torched the high school circuit, putting up 41 points in 21 games. Now it’s time for a massive step up in competition, not only in who he’ll play against, but who he’s playing with. We mentioned the stacked University of Michigan team when talking about Brisson, it’s even more interesting for Hallum, who may not even find his way onto the ice at all. If he can make an impact on that team, we’re really onto something, if he doesn’t, we might learn that the high school numbers were a mirage.

2/3/21 – Ranking: 17 – The speedy high schooler is once again shredding kids he’s much better than in Minnesota preps. Seven goals in six games and another 10 assists is certainly going to excite anyone, but the competition is about as weak as it gets for an NHL Draft pick that it’s not time to get overly excited. Missed seeing him in a Development Camp, hopefully we do in 2021.


5) Matyas Sapovaliv (F)
Acquired: 2021 Entry Draft, 2nd Round, #48 overall
Age: 19 (February 12, 2004)
Most Recent Team: Saginaw Spirit (OHL)
Previous Ranking: 3

Sapovaliv did not flash like we had hoped in the most recent Development Camp and rookie games but there’s no doubt the skill is there for him to be a useful center. He put on a bunch of weight and it shows in the way he is able to use his body forecheck. The skating, which was a concern, does not seem to be as big a problem as was described after he was drafted.

More on Sapovaliv
2/11/23 – Ranking: 3 – As he’s set to hit his 19th birthday tomorrow, Sapovaliv has soared up the list. This actually has a lot more to do with others dropping, but Matyas has done everything you can ask for in his first season post-draft. He posted seven assists in seven games at World Juniors and was utilized as a defensive specialist as well. He’s also posting strong numbers in the OHL with Saginaw. His forechecking continues to be a strong suit and his ability to read the game as a defensive center is strong. He certainly looks like he has an NHL future.

8/16/22 – Ranking: 11 – The concern during the draft on Sapovaliv was his skating. At Development Camp, it was not notably poor which is a good sign having stepped on the Vegas ice just days after being drafted. He’s a strong forechecker and his awareness in the defensive and neutral zones is great. He potted a goal at World Juniors, but there were definitely some signs that he was struggling to keep up as the tournament went along. He’s a real boom or bust type prospect, and it’s not hard to see some of the characteristics that make VGK believe he’ll boom.


**To view the rest of the SinBin Prospect Rankings, click here.**

Roster Down To 26, Who Will Survive The Last Round Of Cuts?

(Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

With eyes set on 23, the Golden Knights training camp roster of 66 has been cut all the way down to 26. The VGK front office have just a few more decisions to make. But, these final ones are always the toughest.

The 26-man roster included 15 forwards, nine defensemen, and two goalies. Three more players will have to find their way off this group before Vegas can drop the banner celebrating the Stanley Cup and begin their quest to repeat.

Obviously, the two goalies, Adin Hill and Logan Thompson are expected to suit up on October 10th, with the playoff hero Hill expected to start between the pipes against the Kraken. Down to 24.

Forwards Jack Eichel, Mark Stone, Jonathan Marchessault, William Karlsson, Chandler Stephenson, Ivan Barbashev, Nic Roy, William Carrier, and Keegan Kolesar are all guaranteed, if healthy, to be on the roster as well. That puts us at 15.

On the back end, Alex Pietrangelo, Shea Theodore, Brayden McNabb, Alec Martinez, and Nic Hague are all locks. So, we’re down to ten.

Ten players. Seven will be on the roster, three will be not.

They are Michael Amadio, Brett Howden, Paul Cotter, Pavel Dorofeyev, Max Comtois, Brendan Brisson, Zach Whitecloud, Ben Hutton, Brayden Pachal, and Kaedan Korczak.

The first variable is always health. Right now, one of those ten players, Zach Whitecloud, is not healthy, and has already been ruled out for the rest of the preseason. If he’s not available to go to start the season, he’ll be placed on injured reserve (IR) and would represent one of the three that would not be on the official 23-man opening night roster. That being said, if Whitecloud can play, his name would have been up there next to Pietrangelo and Theodore as a lock.

Amadio, Howden, and Hutton are all as close to locks as you can be as well. The Golden Knights are not immune to throwing a surprise at us every once in a while, but in this case, it would be a bit of a stunner if the 23-man roster drops without all three of their names.

So, we’re down to six players for two or three spots (depending on Whitecloud). In order, here’s who is most likely to make the final 23.

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Stock Up: 2023 Rookie Faceoff

(Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

It was a weekend to forget from a team perspective for the Golden Knights at the 2023 Rookie Faceoff hosted here in Las Vegas. VGK rookies lost all three games to the Ducks, Sharks, and Avalanche, and struggled on both ends in all three games.

That being said, it wasn’t all bad individually for many prospects. Here are four that stood out positively for me.

Layton Ahac

Ahac did his best Alex Martinez impression in the two games he played this weekend, blocking shots, dominating on the penalty kill, and being one of the most consistent defensemen on the roster in making the first pass in the defensive zone. In a pair of games where the Golden Knights were consistently under pressure, he looked calm in his own end and his decision-making stood out among a group that had a hard time breaking the puck out. He’ll still need to show a lot at the AHL level to get a shot in the NHL, but he’s trending in a positive direction.

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Scouting Reports On Five Unfamiliar Rookie Faceoff Players

(Photo Credit: Ken Boehlke,

Next week, hockey is back. Well, at least some hockey is back. Golden Knights youngsters will participate in three Rookie Faceoff games against the Ducks, Sharks, and Avalanche. The first two games will be played at the Dollar Loan Center while the third will be at City National Arena.

The Golden Knights will bring a 28-man roster to the competition including 17 forwards, eight defensemen, and three goalies. Many of the names on the roster will be familiar to VGK fans. 17 of the 28 are players who were drafted by the Golden Knights. 1st round pick Brendan Brisson highlights the group including 2nd round picks Matyas Sapovaliv and Daniil Chayka and 3rd round selections Mathieu Cataford, Arttu Karki, Jordan Gustafson, and Lukas Cormier.

There are also six players who are familiar to the Golden Knights’ system. Daniel D’Amato and Jordan Papirny played for the Silver Knights last season and Jett Jones played a few games with the Ghost Pirates. Alex Swetlikoff, Joe Fleming, and Christoffer Sedoff have all signed contracts with the organization prior to this summer and are all expected to play in Henderson and/or Savannah this season.

That leaves a group of five players who have either recently signed with the Silver Knights or are looking for a contract.

Ty Cheveldayoff

Despite the familiar name, Cheveldayoff is not the son of Winnipeg Jets GM Kevin Cheveldayoff. A power forward, Cheveldayoff posted career highs in goals (20) and assists (23) with the Spokane Chiefs last season. Unsurprisingly, he likes to go to the front of the net and use his size to outmuscle smaller defensemen. Also, Cheveldayoff is not afraid to drop the mitts, engaging in nine fights in his last two seasons in the WHL.

Robbie Fromm-Delorme

A worker bee on the ice, Fromm-Delorme went undrafted after playing five seasons with the Portland Winterhawks. He wasn’t much of a point producer until the most recent season in the WHL where he posted 33 goals and 34 assists in 65 games. 21-year-old Fromm-Delorme attended Development Camp this summer and looked like one of the more mature players on the ice. He likely won’t wow you with skill, but he’s a good solid player who could easily be a professional.

Bear Hughes

In the 2020 NHL Draft, Hughes was selected by the Washington Capitals in the 5th round. His draft rights expired in 2022 without an NHL contract but he picked up an AHL contract with Washington’s affiliate the Hershey Bears. Hughes never played in the AHL, instead spending the entire season in the ECHL where he scored 59 points in 66 games. He played his junior hockey for former HSK head coach Manny Viveiros and the Spokane Chiefs. He’s a hardworking two-way forward that is willing and able to compete and succeed in front of the net. Hughes signed a two-year contract with the Silver Knights on July 7th, 2023.

Matteo Fabrizi

Fabrizi is a massive defenseman standing 6’5” and nearly 240 pounds (for comparison, Nic Hague is 6’6” 230). The 18-year-old went undrafted in the msot recent draft after scoring 12 points in 67 games for the Red Deer Rebels of the WHL. Fabrizi plays exactly how you’d expect man of his stature to play. He’s incredibly strong in front of the net, can lay a crunching hit if given the chance, and is always willing to rip shots from the point in the offensive zone. Like many big guys though, skating can be a bit of an issue. Attended Vegas Development Camp this summer.

Simon Pinard

After attending Golden Knights Development Camp, Pinard signed a two-year AHL contract with the Silver Knights on July 14th. Pinard played four seasons in the QMJHL scoring a boatload of points (195 in 214 games) before heading to the University of New Brunswick. He won the AUS Championship and USports University Cup where he was a point per game player in the regular season and upped his production to 12 points in seven games in the playoffs. A shoot-first style player he’s fast and physical despite being a bit on the smaller side. He also has a bit of grit to his game, often trying to stir the pot with opponents.

4 Golden Knights Ready To Breakout

(Photo Credit: @_jkarsh on Instagram)

Just about every player to step on the ice for the Golden Knights this season will have already fulfilled their goal as a hockey player. Now, they are all working together to do it again. Individually though, there’s room for improvement for many players on the Vegas roster. With a few departures and an 82-game season in store, there will be opportunities for many Golden Knights, especially the younger ones, to take a step forward. Here are four candidates who could be in store for breakout seasons.

Brett Howden

Howden’s career high in points in a season is just 23 and he scored only 13 for the Golden Knights last year. Of course, his contributions in the playoffs ramped up significantly after he found himself as the third wheel on a line with Mark Stone and Chandler Stephenson. Howden scored five goals (including an OT GWG in the WCF) and added five assists for 10 points in 22 playoff games.

This year, he’ll likely start the season right back in that same spot on the second line and might even find his way onto a power play unit. Howden’s skill set clearly matched up well with Stone and Stephenson which should equate to a lot more playing time than he’s seen in the past. Last season he averaged just 13:04 per game. That number jumped by almost a minute per night to 13:59 in the playoffs. It’d be easy to project him to play closer to 15:00 a game this season as long as the chemistry holds with his linemates.

He’s never reached double-digit goals nor has he eclipsed 25 points in a season in his career. He has a great chance to do both, and potentially much more, this year.

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Like 2019-20, VGK Enter Season With Rookie Defensemen Waiting To Make The Jump To NHL

(Photo Credit: @_jkarsh on Instagram)

When the Golden Knights’ group of six defensemen were healthy and in the lineup together last season, the team was almost unbeatable. Alex Pietrangelo, Shea Theodore, Alec Martinez, Brayden McNabb, Zach Whitecloud, and Nic Hague are all set to return for 2023-24 and expectations remain incredibly high for what the group can do when they are all on the ice.

It seems unfathomable at the moment, and if there were a game tomorrow not a coach in the world would choose any other lineup, but, if the Golden Knights are going to repeat as champions, there’s a strong chance one of the six has been unseated by June 2024.

That’s because of the collection of younger blueliners just about ready to push through to the NHL level waiting in VGK’s system.

Former 2nd round pick Kaedan Korczak and 3rd round pick Lukas Cormier are the highest touted prospects, but Daniil Miromanov, Brayden Pachal, and Daniil Chayka all look like they have the skills to help an NHL team team.

Right now, none of these guys are ready to take a job away from one of the reigning champion incumbents. At some point though, the Golden Knights are going to have to make room for them, and that point could come much sooner than later.

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2023 VGK Free Agency Tracker

(Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

A roundup of all the signings, rumors, and rumbling surrounding the Stanley Cup champion Vegas Golden Knights as free agency opens in advance of the 2023-24 season.

*This article will be updated throughout the day as more information rolls in.*

  • Adin Hill has been re-signed to a two-year contract with $4.9 million AAV (Source: @FriedgeHNIC)
  • Reilly Smith has been traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins in exchange for a 2024 3rd round pick, VGK’s original selection (Source: @KevinWeekes)
  • Ivan Barbashev has agreed to a five-year contract extension with $5 million AAV (Source: Golden Knights)
  • The Golden Knights have tendered qualifying offers to RFAs, Brett Howden, Jiri Patera, and Pavel Dorofeyev (Source: Golden Knights)
  • Jonathan Quick is expected to sign with the New York Rangers. (Source: @KevinWeekes)
  • Silver Knights captain Brayden Pachal has signed a two-year two-way contract with an NHL salary of $775,000 AAV. (Source: Golden Knights)
  • Teddy Blueger signed a one-year deal with the Vancouver Canucks worth $1.9 million. (Source: @Canucks)
  • Laurent Brossoit signed with the Winnipeg Jets for one-year at $1.75 million. (Source: @reporterchris)
  • VGK has signed defenseman Mason Geertsen to a two-year two-way contract with an NHL league minimum value. (Source: @PuckPedia)
  • Mason Morelli has signed a two-year two-way contract with the Golden Knights at the NHL league minimum. (Source: Golden Knights)
  • Jiri Patera has signed a one-year two-way deal with VGK. (Source: @PuckPedia)
  • Gage Quinney has signed a two-year two-way contract to remain with the Golden/Silver Knights. (Source: @PuckPedia)

Former VGK players

  • Mattias Janmark has signed a one-year contract worth $1 million to remain in Edmonton. (Source: Edmonton Oilers)
  • Dylan Coghlan has been extended a qualifying offer by the Carolina Hurricanes. (Source: @WaltRuff)
  • Ryan Reaves is expected to sign a multi-year deal with the Toronto Maple Leafs (Source: @TheFourthPeriod)
    • Reaves has signed a three-year deal with $1.3 million AAV. (Source: @DarrenDreger)
  • Erik Brannstrom signed a one-year contract worth $2 million to remain with the Ottawa Senators. (Source: @Senators)
  • Evgenii Dadonov signed a two-year deal with an AAV of $2.25 million with the Dallas Stars. (Source: @DallasStars)
  • Erik Haula re-signed in New Jersey for three years at $3.15 million AAV. (Source: @KevinWeekes)
  • Oscar Dansk returns to the Calgary Flames on a one-year two-way contract for the league minimum. (Source: @NHLFlames)
  • Colin Miller was traded to the New Jersey Devils for a 5th round pick. (Source: @NJDevils)
  • Max Pacioretty has signed with the Washington Capitals for one-year at $2 million plus $2 million in bonuses. (Source: @frank_seravalli)
  • Patrick Brown has signed with the Boston Bruins for two years at $800,000 AAV. (Source: @FriedgeHNIC)
  • Cody Glass has re-signed with the Predators for two years at $2.5 million (Source: @FriedgeHNIC)
  • Malcolm Subban has signed a one-year two-way contract with St. Louis for the league minimum.
  • Ryan Carpenter has signed with the Sharks on a one-year two-way deal worth the league minimum.
  • Jimmy Schuldt has signed a one-year two-way contract with Seattle for the league minimum.

Simplified Salary Cap Tracker

  • VGK are approximately $3,576,683 UNDER the salary cap with a 19-man roster (11 F, 8 D, 2 G)
    • Eichel, Stone, Karlsson, Marchessault, Barbashev, Roy, Stephenson, Carrier, Kolesar, Cotter, Amadio – $45,487,500
    • Pietrangelo, Martinez, Theodore, McNabb, Whitecloud, Hague, Hutton, Pachal – $28,769,150
    • Hill, Thompson – $5,666,667
  • Qualifying Offers – Howden^ ($1,500,000), Dorofeyev ($874,125), Patera^ ($787,500)
  • Expected LTIR – Lehner ($5,000,000)

^Arbitration eligible

**This is an inexact salary estimation designed to give a rough outline of how much cap space the Golden Knights have to operate with. For exact up-to-date salary cap information, visit**

2023 Golden Knights Draft Picks: Who Are These Guys?

(Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

The Stanley Cup champion Golden Knights selected David Edstrom with the 32nd overall pick in the 1st round. They are slated to make four picks on Day 2 with the first coming in the 3rd round at #77. Here’s a quick rundown of what we know about each player selected by the Golden Knights in the 2023 NHL Draft.

3rd Round – #77 (from BUF)
Selection: Mathieu Cataford (F) – Halifax (QMJHL)

An average-sized two-way forward who can play center or wing. Cataford’s biggest strength is how he thinks the game as he’s not the fastest or most skilled forward but knows how to be in the right spots to be a complementary player.

Has a good shot and also knows how to score in tight. Just an overall solid player with every tool in the bag but without any truly wowing qualities.

Posted 75 points on 31 goals and 44 assists in the QMJHL last season.

There are a lot of different layers to Cataford; he can do just about everything to a decent level. There’s no real weakness to him, but also nothing high-end in terms of skill level. If we look at how he scores his goals, yes, he can score from in-tight, but he can also score from distance and from the bumper role on the power play. This demonstrates his potential diversity as a goal-scorer at the next level. He’s an offensive dual-threat with both his shooting and passing skills in addition to playing on the inside (he’s not a perimeter player). He’s physically involved along the boards and has a solid compete level in all three zones. His play away from the puck is also quite advanced, his effort level on backcheck is solid, and he anticipates plays well in the neutral zone with great ability. His great stick activations to block passes and passing lanes make him useful on the PK, and he can sacrifice his body to block shots as well. -NHL Draft Black Book

3rd Round – #96
Selection: Arttu Karki (D) – Tappara (Finland)

Karki is an offensive-minded defenseman who is spectacular on the power play.

Won the Finnish league and was the 2nd leading goal scorer of all defensemen.

His best asset: his hands. He can beat players one-on-one and can get himself out of trouble deep in his zone by displaying his high level of puck handling to escape pressure. He’s very cool under pressure when retrieving pucks, demonstrating a high level of confidence with the puck on his stick. A beast on the power play (in Finland’s junior league, anyway) he has a big-time point shot he uses to one-time pucks effectively. He scored many goals off one-timers in a stationary position, often from the faceoff circle on the right side of the ice. However, he does need to incorporate more deception skills when he uses it, as he’s a bit of a one-trick pony right now. He needs to add more fakes, use off looks and hesitation fakes more often, and incorporate more movement at the line. -NHL Draft Black Book

Offensive-minded defender who controls the offensive blue line with poise. Shows good mobility but needs to improve his overall pace of play in order to maximize his potential as an effective NHL puck mover. –

6th Round – #192 Overall
Selection: Toumas Uronen (F) – HIFK (Finland)

A speedy winger, Uronen has shown the ability to score and set up teammates playing in the junior league in Finland. Scored 43 points in 39 games while adding 42 penalty minutes.

He’s a bit small for the rigors of the NHL game though. He’ll have to bulk up while maintaining his speed if he’s going to make it in North America.

He will additionally use his speed in the offensive zone to force defenders to rush their breakouts and cut off passing lanes. He can be a creative player with accurate saucer passes and good vision from the outside but the play is rolling in the offensive zone he tends to stay more on the perimeter as opposed to heading to the net like he does on the rush. He gets off his shot quickly and evades shot blocking defenders but needs to lean into his shot on his front foot as opposed to his back foot. -NHL Draft Black Book

**Trade – VGK trade #224 to CBJ for a 2024 7th round pick*

(Huge shout out to both the NHL Black Book and Draft Recrutes. Both guides are spectacular and are must-buys for anyone who loves the NHL Draft. I’ve bought both every year the site has been around.)

What To Know About Adin Hill’s Potential Extension

(Photo Credit: @_jkarsh on Instagram)

Adin Hill is a Stanley Cup champion. Adin Hill is also a pending free agent who played so well along the way to becoming a champion he deserves a fairly significant raise.

Yesterday it was reported by Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet that Hill and the Golden Knights are close to a two-year extension worth $4.9 million per year. The deal has not been made official yet, but all signs point to it getting done and the reported salary being exact or fairly close.

So, what does a nearly $10 million, two-year deal for Adin Hill tell us?

First, the Golden Knights believe the run Hill had through the postseason was not a fluke. They were willing to pony up double his 2022-23 salary to ensure he remains in Vegas. By agreeing to the deal before July 1st, it shows the Golden Knights were not ready to even consider losing Hill to another team. It’s possible they could have pinched a few pennies had other teams not offered up as much, but the VGK front office wasn’t willing to take that risk.

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Decision In Goal Looms For Stanley Cup Champions

(Photo Credit: @TheRunninRebels on Twitter)

Personally, I’m not ready to move past the fact that the Golden Knights are Stanley Cup Champions. I could continue talking about that every day until the puck drops next season (and even then I’d probably keep talking about it).

However, the reality of the NHL calendar is such that decisions about the team moving forward are going to have to be made, and made quickly.

The chief among those decisions for the Golden Knights comes between the pipes. After a season in which Vegas had to scramble before it even began to overcome the loss of Robin Lehner, to using five goalies in the regular season, to seeing Adin Hill throw his hat in the ring for Conn Smythe, the choice in net for VGK is not an easy one.

One thing is clear for the Golden Knights, they aren’t going to expect one goalie to shoulder the entire load moving forward.

I do believe you have to have a good stable of goaltenders. It’s really hard to rely on one guy. I think that model has changed over the last five or six years. The tandem approach is probably the best way to go. You’re going to have one guy that’s going to end up being your guy but he should play 50 games instead of 65. And the other guy has to be good and be ready to play. And you’ve got to have some guys to bring up from the AHL team when necessary. -George McPhee

So, with that in mind, the Golden Knights will enter this offseason looking to restock their stable of goalies and they have many different routes they can go.

The best news about the position though is they start with a perfect base. Logan Thompson remains under contract for the next two seasons with a salary just a smidge above the league minimum at $766k. Thompson’s All Star first half proved he’s perfectly capable to start in the NHL and will clearly be in Vegas’ plans for next season. His salary allows the Golden Knights to view him as the backup, even if that’s not ultimately what plays out.

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