A look into the future of the Vegas Golden Knights

Lynette Rowe
June 27, 2017

We're not going to rush anyone or put them on a fast track.

Edmonton Oilers' star Conner McDavid beat Crosby out for the Lindsay Award. "It's not something you get to see that often, it was fun to watch".

It was thought that Vegas might load up on goalies, but McPhee passed on intriguing options like Philipp Grubauer, Petr Mrazek and Antti Raanta and instead went for a surplus of defencemen _ and more apparent trade value.

Glass is obviously hoping to change that.

The Vegas Golden Knights drafted their inaugural team Wednesday night, selecting a player from each of the 30 other National Hockey League clubs as part of an expansion draft. Neither had Brannstrom, whose limited knowledge of the city came from watching the comedy, The Hangover.

Vegas will play its first two games on the road, visiting Arizona on October 7 before the second leg of an early back-to-back for coach Gerard Gallant's club.

"What surprised me was the quality of some of our forwards that we were able to get out of this situation", Golden Knights owner Bill Foley said prior to the announcement of the team's expansion picks. And the first-round pick could turn into an everyday player, as could the second-round pick a few years from now.

Some forwards are going to have OK numbers only because someone has to score goals, but this team isn't going to have more than a dozen regulation wins.

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Rounding out Vegas's roster from the expansion draft were forwards Teemu Pulkkinen (Arizona), William Carrier (Buffalo), Cody Eakin (Dallas), Tomas Nosek (Detroit), Jonathan Marchessault (Florida), Connor Brickley (Carolina), Pierre-Edouard Bellemare (Philadelphia), David Perron (St. Louis), Oscar Lindberg (New York Rangers), Erik Haula (Minnesota) and William Karlsson (Columbus). I don't know where I'll be in six years. "It's kind of been in the back of your mind since they announced the team".

"I'm looking forward to it".

Effectively stocking up their prospect cupboards from scratch, McPhee and director of amateur scouting Scott Luce seemed to go with a pretty simple strategy: keep most of your picks and try to accumulate a lot of different types of players with attributes you think translate well to the pro level.

After a symphony of boos for NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman and most of Chicago's rivals across the league, the crowd cheered when the Blackhawks finally got on the clock at No. 26. He is just too enticing of a player.

However, not every player Vegas picked in the expansion draft will stick. With so many picks to use this draft, expect Vegas to stock up on franchise talent for the future. Armed with 13 selections - including three first round picks - general manager George McPhee put a bow on a year's worth of extensive scouting by his club with a strong performance that likely set up his club for several years. Because the Tampa Bay Lightning wanted to prevent McPhee from taking one of their younger defenseman, the Lightning gave up a second-round pick, a fourth and prospect Nikita Gusev.

Vegas Golden Knights scout Bob Lowes recaps the 2017 NHL Entry Draft with reporters at the United Center in Chicago on Saturday, June 24, 2017. Not that Glass, whom NHL Central Scouting had ranked sixth amongst North American skaters, was seen as much of a gamble.

Neal had 23 goals and 18 assists last season for the Nashville Predators, who lost to the Pittsburgh Penguins in their first-ever Stanley Cup final. He said a turning point in his development was getting cut from Canada's Ivan Hlinka team in August.

"I think Vegas holds a lot of opportunity", said Glass, who notes he patterns his game after Winnipeg Jets forward Mark Scheifele.

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