Last night the Pens beat the Predators to capture back-to-back Stanley Cups–making them the first team to do it in the salary cap era.
It’s a double-edge sword for hockey fans. In one respect, it’s a bummer because it marks the end of the season, but on the other hand, it means the offseason can finally start and that means deals will get done done…
The dominos will start to fall!
I refuse to talk about the Kruger/TVR deal (that’s most likely completed by now), because it’s been the subject of a few of my columns and I don’t want to keep bringing it up. So, we’ll leave that one for now.
However, there was some pretty interesting (and big) news out of the East Coast today.
The subject of Vegas trade rumors basically since the beginning, Marc Andre Fleury was asked by the Penguins to waive his no movement clause today–to which he agreed. This move indicates that Pittsburgh will chose to protect Matt Murray and expose MAF to the Knights. The MAF rumors have been so consistent (the most of anyone) that I have to believe he’s in the top running to be in the blue paint for Vegas come next year. But, without knowing what other goalies will be exposed, it’s hard to know for sure. We’ll just have to wait and see.
In the days leading up to Monday, it’ll be important to keep your eyes and ears open, since the deals and rumblings should start to come more frequently. Vegas put themselves out there by offering to take on bad contracts ad I have to believe teams have been knocking their door down with offers…
In coaching news, Mike Kelly–who served under Gerard Gallant in Florida–has been hired as an assistant for the Knights, along with 35-year old Ryan Craig. The latter retires as an active player/captain of the Cleveland Monsters (Columbus’ AHL affiliate) in order to join the Knights coaching staff.
In minor league news, the Knights have named recent-Memorial Cup winning coach of the Windsor Spitfires (OHL), Rocky Thompson, the new head coach of the AHL Chicago Wolves. Before coaching the Spitfires, Thompson spent four years as an assistant coach for Oklahoma City (now-defunct AHL team) and was an assistant coach with the Edmonton Oilers during the 2014-2015 season. As a player, Thompson was drafted by Calgary in 1995–spending the majority of his career in the minors; besides short stints with the Flames and Panthers (25 total between the two clubs).
Lastly…the Knights posted on their Instagram today a (little) teaser of the Knights’ jerseys. We’ll see a number of teams next season wearing the new Adidas/NHL collaborated jerseys.
Obviously, the Expansion Draft is what everyone is looking forward to next week, but let’s be honest, this is what we’re really waiting for.
Until next time,
Second City Knight