The goaltender carousel has yet to start spinning, but when it does, the Golden Knights are likely to have a ticket on the ride. The probability of Vegas re-signing Robin Lehner and moving on from Marc-Andre Fleury remains incredibly high which means the Golden Knights would suddenly be in the market for either a backup to Lehner or at the very least an AHL starter if the job is handed to Oscar Dansk.
If indeed they are to keep Lehner, that would eliminate Vegas from the top names soon to be on the market like Braden Holtby, Jacob Markstrom, and Darcy Kuemper but it would be an intriguing place for anyone willing to play for less money but a greater shot at a Stanley Cup.
Enter Henrik Lundqvist.
After being kicked to the curb during the season in favor of Igor Shesterkin, Lundqvist’s time in New York officially came to a close yesterday when he was bought out by the Rangers.
That makes him an unrestricted free agent who is still being paid by his previous organization. He’s made no indication whether or not he even wants to continue his NHL career, but if he does, there’s a connection to Vegas that could make sense.
I wonder about Vegas. If they move Fleury I would think that spot would be an interesting one because Lundqvist has known Robin Lehner since Lehner was 12-years-old and Lehner’s father was Lundqvist’s goalie coach and instructor in Sweden before he came to New York. I think the fit it the room would be there. –Larry Brooks, NY Post on VGK Insider Show
Brooks told the VGK Insider Show that he has not spoken to Lundqvist and thus he is speculating but he named Vegas without being prompted (though I’m sure he knew he was on a Vegas-based radio station).
Lundqvist was far from elite a year ago, but there’s no question there’s still some hockey left in his Hall of Fame career if he so chooses to continue it.
As a backup, the Golden Knights could certainly do much worse and his cost against the cap could be minimal considering he’s made almost $100 million in his career already and has still yet to win a Stanley Cup.
Maybe he sees Vegas as a place that could give him that one last chance. Maybe he’s tight enough with Lehner that it would make for the perfect drama-free duo. Or maybe this is all for naught and he closes up shop on an unbelievable career.
A lot is about to go down in the next seven to ten days, especially between the pipes. We’re fairly certain the Golden Knights are going to part ways with one future Hall of Famer, maybe they can save the day by bringing in another.
Thoughts on Matt Murray from the Pens?
Ken – I guess one old guy is cheaper than the other – can’t imagine why Henrik would even bother. If the only reason is to get his name on the Cup he better look around as I question if Vegas will be the team next year – hope I am wrong but a lot of things will have to fall into place to have that happen. If they are relying on PDB and Lehner to get them there their in more trouble than anyone can imagine IMO. Those two weren’t the solution this year so to believe they are next is questionable at best If Vegas insists on jumping thru the hoops why not wait for free agency and see if they could pick up one of the others you mentioned. Again for the record this has nothing to do personally with not liking Lehner which many insist is the case. I just believe they can do better.
Ken, heard Brooksie yesterday. What a fascinating possibility. I’d love to see that happen. As an alternative if they could work a straight trade with MIN, Dubnyk for Fleury, I think that would be favorable for most everyone involved. MAF gets to play as #1, he goes way back with Guerin, Wild get a solid playoff caliber goalie, and Vegas gets a cheaper but experienced goalie that (without retaining salary) would keep their goalie costs the same or less. Calculation: Fleury (7) + Dansk (700k) = $7.7M. Lehner (5) + Dubnyk (2.5) = 7.5M.
Since we’ve already seen that Lehner is better than Fleury, I am assuming that you are really high on Dansk and think nothing of Dubnyk.
When was that?
And where is the proof that Lehner is better than Fleury? Did PDB even give Fleury a chance? I do not think so. The team shows through its plat that they do not want PDB as their coach. I believe they would have united behind Fleury.
How about Keeping Flury, dumping Lehner and signing Lundqvist? Hank might be happy with one more chance at the cup and sign on as the back-up. With expansion coming next year, we could then make a deal for a replacement for Flury as number 1 keeper after we win the cup and before the expansion draft. With the keeper question settled, the Golden Knights could concentrate on a more pressing issue, finding a competent coach.
Coyote – you must be trolling for an argument from some that believe PDB is the answer to Vegas’ problem. Then again there maybe more that feel that way but consider it a waste of time to even mention it. I am not convenienced he was not part of the reason Vegas came up short this year. Not sure it was a great idea to try and change Vegas style of play 2/3rd thru the reason and not make changes during the playoffs when things weren’t working. I might be wrong but think you have an interesting suggestion – find another coach.
Computer thinks it know more than the operator – the word is convinced not
convenienced. I am sure everyone realizes that but just wanted to make certain.
Let me say this please. I know that it’s all about winning the Stanley Cup. That is the one and only objective of every NHL team. At the time of the coaching change the VGK were not playing well, and neither was Flower. I thought that DeBoer was a horrible choice at the time. While it’s true that the team played much better during the regular season, they obviously did not in the playoffs. DeBoer and his decision to replace Flower have dramatically changed my love affair with the team, as I’m sure that it has with many other fans.
Since about 1977-78, I’ve been a casual hockey fan, and a NYR fan at that. Living in our desert back then, I didn’t really understand hockey enough to really get into it, and I was only about 11 years old. The Miracle on Ice in 1980 made me pay attention more often to hockey, but it was rarely on TV where I lived. I can still remember Ron Duguay skating around with no helmet and all that hair – with a black eye. Loved it when NYR won in -’94. But when the VGK was born, I was hooked. Haven’t watched the NFL in three years. (Always rooted for Lindberg – and even bought a Lindberg jersey because he was the NYR on the Golden Misfits). I would love to see Hank trade the Big Apple for Sin City for at least one season. I know he’s not the goalie he was, but he still plays well enough to win games. I want MAF to stay – but if that doesn’t happen, Elvis, move over for another king.
Ya know the Fleury Cluster F@@k reminded me of when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor President Roosevelt said this day will live in infamy. I feel the same way about the Fleury torpedoing I think as years go by there will always be that knot in our stomach the way the Splash Brothers and DeBoer treated him. This feeling we have as a consensus won’t be going away anytime soon. Gallant faltered but he was a Golden Knight Pete DeBoer will always be a San Jose Shark and that’s just a fact.
Michael Verner Smith
Keep it at around 6.5 to 7 million for both and you got a deal from me! Lack of goalies in the system is a weakness for us. Henrik is a much better option than Dansk.
Lundqvist 100% plans to play in 2021. If he were retiring he would’ve retired and saved the Rangers his $4m buyout hit.
Do you have any idea what a contract is? Just asking as your post leaves many in doubt.
What now the knights are only gonna get old or washed up goalies?