Praise Be To Foley, Vegas Golden Knights Hockey Website

Tag: Atlanta Thrashers

2017 Draft Being Compared To Draft That Killed The Thrashers; Beware McPhee

The 1999 NHL Entry Draft… regarded as the worst in NHL history. Here’s the scary part, draft analysts have been pulling out the ’99 term to describe this year’s rookie draft. Even hockey’s most positive analyst isn’t exactly pumped about the prospects available to the Golden Knights in their first ever Entry Draft.

This year’s draft appears to have considerably less sizzle and marquee value than each of the last two that featured the Connor McDavid versus Jack Eichel rivalry in 2015 and the Auston Matthews sweepstakes in 2016. –Bob McKenzie, TSN

Okay, fine. Its not like years past, but how bad could it possibly be?

The last time we had a draft like this, in terms of level of athletic competition was ’99… worst draft in the the history of the league -Pierre McQuire, TSN 690

Oh God, he did it, he said ’99, it’s got to be that bad. Only 16 first round draft picks in ’99 played a total of 82 games. In 1998, 23 out 27, and in 2000, 21 of 30 first-rounders skated for a minimum of 82 games. Sure, we’ve been touting ‘Number one Nolan‘ and ‘Nico the Knight‘ but after ’99, anything is possible. Scouts could easily be wrong on Patrick and Hischier. Analysts are expecting so little, Vegas should feel lucky to be in the mix for two potential goal scorers. If June’s amateur draft is anything like 18 years ago, Vegas should start focusing on 2018’s draft. You think the hockey world is being too dramatic? Here, remind yourself of the negative impact the ’99 draft had.

1999: Top Ten breakdown

1 – Patrik Stefan/Center – Atlanta

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Where Should We Expect Vegas To Pick In The Entry Draft

Expansion rules have dominated the media, and this site, for the past week, but the expansion draft is just one of three different ways by which the inaugural Las Vegas NHL team will be constructed. The other two are via free agency and through the NHL Entry Draft.

The league has made it clear they want to give The Creator and his team a good shot at being competitive early on in the franchise’s existence. But most of comments made under that guise are focused on the expansion draft not the entry draft.

In the past expansion teams usually select near the top of the draft, but not in the first slot. In 2000, Minnesota picked third and Columbus fourth. In 1999, Atlanta was given the second pick and moved up to one. And in 1998 Nashville was awarded the third pick but traded up to second.

So it’s reasonable, based on precedent for our team to select somewhere between second and fourth. But, there’s this thing call the lottery that may throw things off a bit.

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30, 40, 50 Wins, The Three Year Plan

Expansion teams in the NHL, and any professional league for that matter, often struggle early in their existence. Here in Vegas the same is expected by most. But, there’s one very important person who’s not so sure it’s going to take that long.

Our goal is to win 25-30 games the first season, 40 games the second season, 50 games the third season and be in the playoffs. -The Creator

Praise be to Foley!

The Creator has never been shy about his desire to not only bring a team to Las Vegas, but to bring us a winning one. I for one love the three year plan. However, going off some of the things we’ve learned, it might actually be modest.

There have been multiple rumors stating the expansion draft may have “looser rules,” and there’s even an unnamed GM on record concerned he may lose some of his best young talent.

Then, there’s this…

We have no players under contract, and the salary cap is $72 or $74 million. So it depends on how much they will let us use in the first year. It may be all or it may not be all. But we’ll do well.

In other words. I’m spending every dime they’ll let me to be good.

The Minnesota Wild made the postseason in their third year. It took Nashville six seasons to make the playoffs. Atlanta needed seven, and Columbus eight. So conventional odds are certainly stacked against Las Vegas.

But that was a different time. All four of those teams came in the league within three years of each other. So not only were they selected from a watered down expansion pool, but they were also all competing against each other to fill their rosters in the subsequent years.

The more we hear about the issues in Canada, the less likely it seems Quebec will join Vegas in expansion. So, we’ll have run on the entire expansion draft, have a high pick in the Entry Draft (possibly first), and have an owner who is willing to spend every dime of the salary cap.

30, 40, 50 sounds good. But it’s really not that unrealistic to think it could be 40, 50, 50+, and maybe even a Cup.

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