Recently Vegas Golden Knights General Manager George McPhee participated in the club’s first ever NHL Combine event that took place in Buffalo, NY. One of the topics that were discussed was trades.
According to reports, McPhee’s next move could come as early as tomorrow or Tuesday of this week. He also stressed to the members of media who attended the NHL Combine that trying to acquire players like Alexander Ovechkin or Ilya Kovalchuk is not an option.
In his tenure with the Washington Capitals McPhee selected Ovechkin in the 2004 NHL Entry Draft at 1st overall. Ovechkin was McPhee’s only draft lottery win selection while GM of the Capitals.
With regards to Ovechkin McPhee highlighted by saying this about the Russian sniper.
“It doesn’t surprise me because of our relationship,” McPhee said, before breaking into a laugh. “But I don’t think anything will be happening there. There’s too many jerseys with No. 8 on them in the seats in Washington from moving that player.” Per ESPN.com
His comment about “there are too many jerseys with No. 8 on them” is very accurate given that his number is a top seller among Capitals fans.
For Ovechkin, he is coming off of another year of playoff disappointment at the hands of Pittsburgh Penguins. In his 13 games in this year’s Stanley Cup Playoffs, he scored 5 goals and 3 tallied assits. During his regular season campaign his goal production dropped from 50 in the previous season to 33 this year.
As for the Kovalchuk topic, McPhee told reporters that the Golden Knights do not have anything concrete brewing in trade discussions with the New Jersey Devils about grabbing the former NHLer.
“We haven’t had any discussions that I’d imagine would go down that path to talk to a player like Kovalchuk,” McPhee said of the 34-year-old who scored 417 goals in 816 NHL games before playing in the KHL. “We’ll be looking for younger players and people that will be with us three, four years from now.” Per NHL.com
During the NHL Scouting Combine, McPhee met with a group of reporters and provided somewhat of a hint to his strategic approach to how he plans to engineer the first ever Golden Knights roster when they take the ice in their inaugural campaign that begins this fall.
Forgive me of the low audio quality in this video everyone.
Below are some of the quotes from the media scrum courtesy of our friend and colleague Dan Marrazza with the Vegas Golden Knights who was at the NHL Combine.
McPhee made mention of teams offering big contracts. It is interesting that he says this because there is a report out there that involves Vegas and Chicago in discussion’s that is centralized around defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk and forward Marcus Kruger.
As it stands right now the Chicago Blackhawks are currently $4.52 million plus over the cap. For forward Kruger, his cap hit going into this season is $3,083,333 and defenseman van Riemsdyk’s contract for this upcoming campaign is $825,000.
If Vegas and Chicago do indeed strike a deal between each other, that would bring the Blackhawks closer to being cap compliance.