The NHL Trade Deadline is still 31 days away, but the Golden Knights have just 10 games before they have to make their decision on what to do.
Many of the question marks from the beginning of the season remain and a massive new one has popped up along the way. The health of Mark Stone will clearly be the most important determining factor as to the choices Vegas make at the deadline.
No matter where they are with Stone though, the Golden Knights’ place amongst the Western Conference will also play a part in the VGK front office’s decision-making. The numbers haven’t been pretty lately including 0-2-2 in the last four, 2-6-2 in the last 10, and 16-16-4 since the red-hot start. The Golden Knights currently sit in 2nd in the division and fourth in the conference, but are almost exactly as far from the playoff cut line as the top of the division in points percentage.
As was the case last year as the Golden Knights slipped down the standings around deadline day, there’s certainly an argument for the Golden Knights to hold or even sell before March 3rd. However, don’t expect that to happen.
That Vegas thing, they are really struggling and I think they are going to do something, the question is just when. –Elliotte Friedman on 32 Thoughts Podcast
Friedman has thrown out a few names for Vegas but the two he’s keyed in on are a pair of forwards from the St. Louis Blues.
Someone said to me, depending on particularly what Vegas’ injury situation is, they could see Vegas liking (Noel) Acciari and (Ivan) Barbashev. Who’s coaching Vegas? Accairi was in Boston with Cassidy and Cassidy saw Barbashev play very well in the 2019 Stanley Cup Finals. Not saying they’re going to end up there but both of those players are going to be available. Vegas will be interesting with what they do depending on Stone’s injury. –Friedman on 32 Thoughts Podcast
Acciari is a former Bruin, and as Friedman mentioned, played for Bruce Cassidy both in the NHL and AHL in Boston and Providence. He’s a defense-first center who regularly starts 65-70% of his shifts in the defensive zone. He has just 18 points in 51 games this season but has potted 10 goals for the Blues.
Under Cassidy, Acciari played 142 games and tallied 17 goals and 10 assists. He was relied upon to kill penalties but rarely saw power play time. He averaged about 12 minutes a night for Cassidy’s Bruins and scored seven playoff points in his 35 postseason games.
Barbashev is a similar player but is a left-handed winger as opposed to the right-handed centerman, Acciari. 24 points in 51 games for Barbashev including a strong recent run of three goals and four points in the last five games. Barbashev scored in the 2019 Stanley Cup Final against Cassidy’s Bruins and averaged 15 minutes of ice time per game in that series.
Both Barbashev and Acciari are on expiring contracts with Barbashev’s worth $2.25 million and Acciari’s a million less at $1.25 million.
If Stone goes on LTIR, that should cover these adds.
In cap space yes, should be no problem, but in terms of cost to get them from other teams, no. That is the part where we sell the future for the present. They have to do something though. Staying exactly where they are at is not going to be a winning formula and not getting, at least, to the playoffs is probably worse for the franchise than trading off the future. My opinion of course.
Will Stone play hockey again?
THE hockey GOD
they need a veteran goalie
a power forward
a forward who can finish
a veteran d man
they have nothing to trade in return except for draft picks
No need to trade. It’s the warm ice, man! I know a guy who’s done studies on it. The VGKs’s problem is no doubt the ice
No ThG, they do not need to shuffle in a new veteran goaltender. Thompson will be just fine. They could use a power finishing forward, although neither Barbashev or Acciari meet that standard. If Stone can return 100% healthy then they should keep the draft picks and prospects.
Other than that, stand pat but be ready to hold a fire sale if the team continues to sink. The only players that would be safe in a fire sale are Stephenson, Marchy, Carrier, Cotter and Thompson.
Everyone else should be on the shelf FOR SALE. If that’s the case Foley should fire McCrimmon and allow a new GM to take over the roster for this.
This fanbase, including myself, is going to be pissed if Buffalo makes the playoffs and the VGK is on the outside looking in again.
THE hockey GOD
the existing goalie pair
is not good enough, a blind man can see that
THE hockey GOD
Smith isn’t going anywhere
the rest of those guys you mentioned, I would trade in a heart beat
You mean Mcfly too
Pass on Acciari and Barbashev as we already have a team loaded with those type of guys.
THE hockey GOD
I concur 1000%
knights fan in minny
i would rather have domi
A cheap tough/bruiser winger for the bottom 6 & a sniper for the top 6. They have cheap young guys as trade chips.
Two deadline scenarios both contingent on Mark Stone:
1. Stone is playing at the deadline. Acquire a $3-4m guy for 1 LW moving Stephenson to 3 C. Create enough cap space by trading Martinez and/or Hague. Not worth trading assets to trade Martinez and it would be a slap in his face to waive him but would be worth clearing the $5m or most of it.
2. Stone is out for the season. Acquire his replacement at 1 RW as a 30+ goal/yr. sniper. First choice Timo Meier–second choice Vladimir Tarasenko. Tarasenko @ 31 is four years older and will be cheaper. One last time trade assets to get the deal done and implement a more conservative save draft choices to develop prospects for the future beginning the 2024 draft. Build the roster around Eichel, Meirer/Tarasenko, Petro, Theo and the Misfits. If Stone is out this season and a comparable salary comes by the deadline in they will have to figure out Stone and the cap in the offseason.
If Stone is playing at the deadline and later becomes incapacitated it will be impossible to have a deep postseason run if they make it at all. I do not see the need to sell, sell and sell and engage a from the ground up rebuild. The core is still strong pending Stone’s health or his replacement.
I meant the core is strong with or without Stone. Obviously though, Stone or his replacement is key to winning a Cup or getting close to one.
Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff:
Will Patrick Kane be ready to move on from the Chicago Blackhawks and where will he want to play?
Potential fits for Kane
Chicago Blackhawks – reassess after the season.
New York Rangers – Timo Meier may be their top target over Kane.
Vegas Golden Knights – Will Mark Stone be LTIR’d for the rest of the season? Kane with Jack Eichel.
Los Angeles Kings – The Kings have the assets to do it.
Toronto Maple Leafs – Americans Auston Matthews and Kane on the same line?
Dallas Stars – A dark horse and would make them a serious contender.
anybody who has watched Kane this season knows that he is a step slower and a lot less engaged in the battle than he was in previous seasons. some of that is admittedly losing his opposite side winger DeBrincat, but a lot of it is his unwillingness to go to the net. He is not scoring goals anymore, and that means he is not what the Vgk need…. they need goal scorers and net front scorers, not more perimeter setup men…..they already have a bellyfull of those.
Thanks, for the information any word on the asking price and is Kane only scene as a rental?
The asking price will reportedly begin with a first round pick and a top prospect, similar to the Giroux trade of last season.
The rumors are that Chicago wants a #1 pick, and either Lafreniere or Kaako in return for Kane, who would reunite with Panarin.
the interesting part of this is that Kane’s agent is Pat Brisson, who is the father of VGK draft pick Brendan Brisson, who is playing in Henderson right now. could he be part of a trade?
It all depends on Kane. he has a no movement clause, so he will go only where he wants to go. and so far there has been no discussion between him and the Hawks GM about a trade, as Kane said so just a week ago.