Expansion Draft Gives Vegas Golden Knights Their Team

Expansion Draft
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After teams submitted their protection lists on Sunday, the Vegas Golden Knights officially went to work on drafting their team. General manager George McPhee worked on deals with teams and that was reflected in some of the player choices. Now the Knights officially have their players.

Expansion Draft Gives Golden Knights Their Team

Wednesday night not only signified the NHL Awards, it also gave the Knights the opportunity to introduce the team that will take the ice for them this upcoming season. There were plenty of surprise choices.

NHL free agent frenzy

David Perron (STL)
Brendan Leipsic (TOR)
Tomas Nosek (DET)
Pierre-Edouard Bellemare (PHI)
Oscar Lindberg (NYR)
Erik Haula (MIN)
James Neal (NSH)
William Karlsson (CBJ)
Jon Marchessault (FLA)
Cody Eakin (DAL)
Teemu Pulkkinen (ARI)
Connor Brickley (CAR)
Chris Thorburn (WPG)


Brayden McNabb (LA)
Marc Methot (OTT)
David Schlemko (SJS)
Griffin Reinhart (EDM)
Alexei Emelin (MTL)
Colin Miller (BOS)
Clayton Stoner (ANA)
Deryk Engelland (CGY)
Nate Schmidt (WSH)
Trevor van Riemsdyk (CHI)
Jason Garrison (TB)
Jonathan Merill (NJ)
William Carrier (BUF)
Luca Sbisa (VAN)


Marc-Andre Fleury (PIT)
Jean-Francois Berube (NYI)
Calvin Pickard (COL)

While most of these players are already under contract for next season, Engelland and Haula were two free agent choices.

Trades Aplenty For Golden Knights

With teams allowed to negotiate with Vegas on who to take, it isn’t surprising that the Knights made quite a few deals involving the players they took.

In a surprising move, the Knights will not only get Marchessault, but also Reilly Smith. Marchessault is coming off 30 goals and 21 assists in his first year with the Panthers. Smith also had himself a nice year with 15 goals and 22 assists. A fourth round pick in 2018 will go from Vegas to Florida.

Haula was a popular name once it was released that the Wild would not be protecting him. With Vegas signing Haula as a free agent, he is considered the pick from Minnesota. The Knights will also be receiving Alex Tuch for not selecting a different Wild player. A conditional third-round pick comes to the Wild.

The Islanders took a risk by leaving young players such as Ryan Strome and Brock Nelson unprotected. To keep them safe, the Isles struck a deal that would allow them to keep those players. Berube hadn’t seen much time and Grabovski hasn’t played since suffering a concussion in March of 2016. A couple draft picks and prospect also go to Vegas.

The Ducks made sure they wouldn’t lose Josh Manson or Sami Vatanen to the Knights. To lay off those two, Vegas will receive prospect Shea Theodore along with Stoner.

McPhee mentioned that the Sabres influenced them to stay away from a few others players. They’ll be sending a sixth round pick for the Knights taking Carrier.

Brickley has yet to see any NHL time. He totaled 15 goals and 11 assists in the AHL last season. A fifth round pick also goes to Vegas for this selection.

A lot of young talent was left unprotected by the Lightning. Vegas was willing to strike a deal, but it took a lot for them to take Garrison. A prospect and two draft picks will head to Vegas.

The Blue Jackets wanted to get Clarkson off the books. But they had to give up some young talent to do so. Karlsson heads to Vegas along with a 2019 pick. The 2017 pick was flipped to the Jets.

The Jets were afraid of losing a veteran such as Toby Enstrom. They enticed Vegas with a few picks to take Chris Thorburn. They will get the 24th overall pick in return.

It had been known for quite some time, but Vegas nabbed their likely starting goaltender in Fleury. The Penguins threw in a 2020 pick along with the Knights taking him.

The Knights will officially play their first home game on October 10th against the Arizona Coyotes. They will open the season on the road on October 7th, also against the Coyotes.