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McCrimmon Shares Details On Stone’s Health, Hague’s Contract, And Goalie Outlook

(Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Training Camp is right around the corner. Trust me, it actually is, the long wait is so close to being over. With it a number of questions will begin to be answered for the Golden Knights. From lineup to systems to personnel to health, much of the picture will start to clear up every day we get closer to October 11th.

Until then, we must rely on snippets of information from the most important people in the organization, and recently we got some from the general manager. Speaking on the VGK Insider Show on Fox Sports Radio, Kelly McCrimmon dipped into the latest on Mark Stone’s health, contract negotiations with Nic Hague, and the goalie picture.

First, on Stone. A few days prior to Stone’s surgery at a press conference McCrimmon shared the news of what they expected the offseason to look like for the captain.

Mark Stone has been seeing consultants and meeting with doctors and it appears quite likely he’ll have back surgery on Wednesday. He would be available for Training Camp and rehab over that period of time. That’s not 100% for certain but it’s certainly the most likely outcome at this time. -McCrimmon on May 16th

Three days later, following the surgery, the team released this statement via Twitter.

Mark Stone underwent a successful lumbar discectomy with Dr. Robert Watkins, IV at Cedars Sinai Marina del Rey Hospital. He is expected to be ready to play for the regular season. -Golden Knights Official Statement

McCrimmon has spoken a few times and reiterated the expected timeline of Stone returning to the team for the first game of the season. In the interview with Fox Sports Radio, McCrimmon continued along the same path.

No different than what we’ve been saying all along. Mark’s in town, he’s skating. Our expectation is that he’s going to be available for the opening of the season. What that means exactly with respect to training camp, we’ll see. When you have these offseason surgeries, Laurent Brossoit is another one, really you don’t have that definitive timeline until the players get here, they get with the medical team, you see how they respond to certain treatments to certain levels of intensity. There’s a reason that teams at times appear to be vague with respect to timelines on injuries because it’s hard to pinpoint. My answers I’m giving here today are exactly I think as what we’ve said throughout the offseason and that’s the information we’re working with and the expectations we have. So that’s how we’ll play it out and once we get on the ice and see how players react that are coming off injuries or surgeries or lengthy rehabs we’ll know more at that time. –McCrimmon on VGK Insider Show

So, it still appears Stone is on track to be in uniform with the team on October 11th, but his availability to start Training Camp on September 24th remains in doubt.

On to the next order of business, restricted free agent Nic Hague.

We expect we’ll get that done prior to Training Camp. We like Nic a lot and we’ve seen a lot of growth in his game since we drafted him. He’s 6’6″ 240 pounds and I think he’s going to continue to improve for a long time. Guys that size, their development curve is a little bit longer and a little bit slower to arrive and I think that’s one of the really exciting things about Nic and his potential. –McCrimmon on VGK Insider Show

Hague is only required to be offered a one-year contract worth around $900,000. It’s assumed that Hague and his agent believe the defenseman is worth much more, and their only negotiating leverage is to hold out of training camp (and potentially regular season games).

The Golden Knights have a bit of cap space available to offer Hague slightly more than the qualifying offer, and it’s clear both sides would benefit from the 23-year-old participating in all of Training Camp.

Typically, the Golden Knights shut down anything contract-related when asked about a pending free agent, but this time McCrimmon gave a bit more of an optimistic answer. This is certainly good news that the wait is nearly up and Hague will be under contract sooner rather than later.

Finally, McCrimmon dove into the goalie situation a bit further.

We’re going to watch and see how it unfolds. We like Laurent Brossoit and I thought he played a lot of really good goal for us. Logan Thompson is a really talented goaltender and guy we’re really excited about and Adin Hill, we like Adin Hill. That gives us more confidence in the position that we’ll have people emerge. They are all going to get an opportunity to make first impressions on goaltending coach Sean Burke and Bruce Cassidy. That’ll be a really interesting position to monitor for our staff. –McCrimmon on VGK Insider Show

Cassidy has said on multiple occasions it’s Thompson’s job to lose, which clearly gives him a leg up heading into camp. Meanwhile, Brossoit remains unlikely to participate in camp and may be out a bit into the regular season.

The split between Thompson and Hill will be intriquing, and telling, both in preseason games and to start the regular season.

**McCrimmon’s full interview with Ryan Wallis and Daren Millard on the VGK Insider Show is available here.**

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24 Comments

  1. Expect Brossoit to be traded. VGK will go with Thompson and Hill.

  2. Henderson One

    You can not believe anything that McCrimmon says. It is useless to report on it. This organization has little credibility or transparency and as a result it has eroded the good will that the franchise established at the outset.

    • the hockey God

      negative nilly

    • Tim

      Henderson One, There credibility left after year one. They were blind sighted by so much success that they lost there way. Then George made his famous comment that draft picks were just perishable goods that was the first time I saw where things may go bad. Tatar for 3 draft picks was the start, not resigning Perron was the next bad move and you all know the rest of the story. Fast forward to the start of year 6 we have no farm system, and old injury prone team with no cap space and all these were self inflicting wounds by a not very smart front office who could of had the world by the balls. My wife and I will still watch if we win fine if we lose oh well it just will never be the same. If you can’t see the future is a little bleak no cap relief for at least two years and each day our team becomes older and slower and as I said no farm system. You’d have to be really a Homer not to see they’ve fucked us and will eventually leave and we’ll be stuck in a rebuild for who knows how long.

      • Mike StG

        Tim, I’m about 98% sure McPhee never said draft picks were perishable. He DID say that cap space was a perishable asset, because if you don’t use it then it’s of no benefit. Especially if you are a contender.

        He said that either after the Year 1 playoffs or during Season 2 after acquiring Max and signing Stastny.

        • Tim

          Mike, He absolutely said that. I’ve been on this site since the beginning and have heard a lot where I’m not sure when you joined but trust me those were his words.

          • Mike StG

            Tim, I have heard every interview that McPhee did in the first 3 years of VGK and never heard that. I know what I quoted is correct because I heard it myself on the interview.

            McPhee DID say that in the expansion draft process they acquired a number of draft picks that they intended to use as assets in the future. They did just that in trades for Tatar, Patch and Stone. If they had experienced an inaugural year like Seattle they would have used those picks (assets) differently. But since they were in the playoffs in Year 1 and felt they were close in the next few years they used those ‘assets’ to try and win now.

  3. the hockey God

    “No different than what we’ve been saying all along. Mark’s in town, he’s skating. Our expectation is that he’s going to be available for the opening of the season. What that means exactly with respect to training camp, we’ll see. When you have these offseason surgeries, Laurent Brossoit is another one, really you don’t have that definitive timeline until the players get here, they get with the medical team, you see how they respond to certain treatments to certain levels of intensity. There’s a reason that teams at times appear to be vague with respect to timelines on injuries because it’s hard to pinpoint. My answers I’m giving here today are exactly I think as what we’ve said throughout the offseason and that’s the information we’re working with and the expectations we have. So that’s how we’ll play it out and once we get on the ice and see how players react that are coming off injuries or surgeries or lengthy rehabs we’ll know more at that time. –McCrimmon on VGK Insider Show”

    blows away that idiot speigal
    “reporter” from a few days ago, useless as teats on a bull.

    The queen has died, long live the king

  4. the hockey God

    am i only one who noticed the elephant in room NOT MENTIONED

    wiggy biscuit

    oh my, i hope he’s on his meds for his manic panic attacks. Everyone knows his history. “Lehner’s mental health issues led to a diagnosis of bipolar 1 with manic phases. It was made five weeks into his rehab treatments after he had a panic attack on the ice while playing for the Buffalo Sabres against the Detroit Red Wings on March 29.”

  5. Blitz

    I used my sophisticated translation machine to decipher what McCrimmon has said. Here are my results:

    1. “I have no fucking clue what is going on with Stone. It is against front office policy to actually talk to our players. However, I heard from his cousin’s former roomate that he is skating again. I hope he makes it to camp, but I really really hope he makes it to the start of the season. I wish we wouldn’t have let him sign a no trade clause, because we would have already traded him and a prospect for TWO future considerations.”

    2. “No fucking way Nic Hague will be signed by training camp and he will probably hold out making us look bad.”

    3. “Logan Thompson has too much personality and we really really hate players with personality. We really want to leave him in the AHL until we can get rid of him, however we are really in a bind this year with cap and Brossoit being hurt. Ultimately I would like to bring in another high dollar goalie, but the cost is inflated due to everyone knowing our cap woes and mismanagement. So I will grab another goalie, that I watched in the WHL, and hope he has a dull muted personality and also hope he can force us not to have to play Thompson. I like pudding.”

  6. JV

    Stone: What else is new? Misinformation anybody?
    Hague: He’s a 6’6″ 6th- 7th D right now that averages about 1 hit per game and takes too many stupid penalties. Offer 2.5 mil over 2 years or 4 mil over 3 years.
    Brossiot: won’t see until Jan. at earliest.

  7. Jailbird

    Oh geez! This place is such a downer.

  8. Blitz

    I feel like VGK will eventually over reach for Hague and I don’t think they should. In this new coach’s system I am not sure Hague is a good fit. He is an offensive dman and supposedly the system is about defense not Deboer’s offense from the dman corp. Hague is a big guy that doesn’t use his size, so that just makes him a d man that is a step slower, but doesn’t make up for it in physicality. His talents are on offense, which are ok. The one positive is he is young and can get better. I think the numbers thrown around are saying he should make more than Whitecloud and that doesn’t make sense to me. Hutton makes 850k and is a better ‘defense’ man and more physical. I would imagine, in this system Hutton is more valuable. Curious to see what actually happens here. I think Vegas should wait it out and stick with a reasonable number.

    • the hockey God

      hague will learn from marty and get better, note marty is not a physical d man but he knows how to use his body to take away time and space. Maybe call marty Dr Who.

      • Mike StG

        ThG, I agree on Marty. I thought Ken’s comment in the last Twitter space that he considered him an offense oriented defenseman (not defense oriented) was patently ridiculous. Marty has always been a defense first blue liner. It’s one of the reasons I had talked about Vegas acquiring him from LA. Always in position, guards the net, blocked shots galore. I remember seeing him run down McDavid on a breakaway by skating a perfect angle in a VGK-EDM game and I was blown away.

        He’s an anchor for Petro and allows him to activate without worry. Hague was okay with Petro but his inexperience and foot speed didn’t allow Petro to do that. Hague must be asking for 3.5 or 4 AAV if Vegas hasn’t been actively talking with his camp. He’s not worth that. Also, in 2 of his 3 seasons with VGK he’s missed 30 or more games due to injuries, so he is isn’t very durable.

    • JV

      Agree Blitz. But they will overpay him by at least 500K per year. He takes a lot of Tripping penalties, which means he’s getting beat because he’s a step too slow as you pointed out. If he sits out, he’s still RFA with no arb rights the following season. If he doesn’t like what’s being offered,he should fire his agent, take a 1 year deal, then go to arb next season and get paid.

  9. Jailbird

    A problem we DO have, is lack of physicality. Hague brings size at least.

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