With only three weeks left until every NHL team officially submits their Expansion Draft Protection List, it appears that the wheels are already in motion within the Las Vegas Golden Knights organization. Yesterday morning TSN Senior Hockey Writer, Frank Seravalli, broke news of a “likely, but not 100% done yet” deal between Vegas and the Chicago Blackhawks:
Pierre LeBrun heard rumblings that Vegas would be willing to take on another team’s bad contract in exchange for a first round draft pick:
Lots going on with Vegas. I also hear they might net a 1st RD pick from a team for taking on a bad contract... fun few weeks ahead https://t.co/il6PNEcurf— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) May 31, 2017
Speaking of bad contracts, the Detroit Red Wings have several of them. The Wings also have a top ten draft pick for the first time in a quarter of a century. Both of the previously mentioned facts lead me to ponder a few questions:
- Should the Red Wings consider dealing with Vegas before the expansion draft?
- Does Ken Holland have the chips to play? Would he even want to?
If LeBrun’s tweet holds true, and Vegas is actually willing to take on a bad deal for a first round pick, I don’t think anybody would blame Ken Holland for giving Golden Knights’ general manager, George McPhee, a phone call or two. Whether Holland wants to admit it or not, he’s signed a lot of less than desirable contracts over the last few years, but in mild defense of Detroit’ general manager, so have a lot of other NHL GM’s.
Frans Nielsen, Justin Abdelkader, Danny DeKeyser, Darren Helm, and Luke Glendening are all players who are under what many would consider, bad contracts, with the Red Wings for the next four to five years. Would it be worth shedding one of the aforementioned players along with the Wings ninth overall pack in this year’s NHL Draft, just to dump their contract?
Personally, I don’t believe so. The Las Vegas Golden Knights need talent, but so do the Red Wings. If the Wings wish to eventually reclaim their spot among the NHL’s elite teams, it needs to be done through proper drafting. This year’s draft class may not be as star-studded as some of it’s predecessors, but there is still talent to be had at ninth overall when Detroit makes their selection.
Even if McPhee and Vegas wanted to take on one of the Wings bad contracts, I honestly don’t believe that Ken Holland would want to part ways. Next season will be Holland’s final under his current contract with the Red Wings, he’s not going to change his M.O. and unravel what he truly believes is a team close to being capable of contending next year.
General mangers around the league have made it fairly obvious to Ken Holland that if the Red Wings want to do business, the deal is going to involve one of Detroit’s top six forwards. It seems both highly unlikely and very ill-advised for Holland to trade away players like Anthony Mantha, Dylan Larkin, and Andreas Athanasiou.
In a perfect world we could all peacefully help pack Jonathan Ericsson’s bags and send him off to Las Vegas like proud parents on their child’s first day of school, but the reality of that happening is not likely.
So I ask you, the faithful and proud readers, what do you think?
Should Ken Holland and the Red Wings try and deal with the Golden Knights?
This poll is closed
Yes, roll the dice!
Nope, it’s not worth the risk.
I’m not a gambler, but I’d bet against it happening.