The Golden Knights’ offseason is astir to vigor up, with the enlargement and amateur drafts taking spot adjacent week and escaped bureau looming connected the horizon.
It’s the cleanable clip for a mailbag, with plentifulness of questions astir the aboriginal of unrestricted escaped cause defenseman Alec Martinez, the goaltenders and much connected the minds of readers.
Let’s get close to it. (Some questions were edited for clarity.)
Is determination immoderate mode to support Martinez?
— Dawn Leslie
If Vegas finds a squad for (Marc-Andre) Fleury, volition Vegas beryllium capable to support Martinez?
What are the likelihood of retaining Martinez?
— Lynda Cunningham
His heroic effort playing connected a breached ft volition spell down successful Knights playoff lore. But arsenic it stands, Martinez mightiness outgo excessively overmuch to re-sign.
Martinez, who turns 34 connected July 26, is owed a rise aft starring the NHL successful blocked shots during the regular play and playoffs. He was 2nd connected the squad successful mean crystal clip (22:34) and posted 32 points, the second-highest full of his career. His 23 assists successful 53 games besides were connected gait for a vocation high.
The Knights person a small much than $5 cardinal successful wage headdress space, according to PuckPedia.com, with 19 players signed for 2021-22. Should Martinez deed the escaped cause market, a three- oregon four-year declaration would beryllium worthy astir $5.5 cardinal per twelvemonth successful Evolving Hockey’s projections.
That means the Knights person to get originative if they don’t privation Martinez to walk. Trading 1 of the goaltenders evidently would escaped up the money. They besides could woody a subordinate entering the last twelvemonth of his woody oregon marque a splashy determination to reconfigure the roster.
Martinez said successful precocious April there had been nary discussions with the Knights astir an extension, though wide manager Kelly McCrimmon indicated it was connected his to-do list. It’s been quiescent astir Martinez recently, which could bespeak talks are ongoing.
Any accidental (Robin Lehner) … has to thrust the LTIR this regular play to springiness (Logan) Thompson immoderate crystal clip down Fleury?
— Louis Gregory
Looking past the sarcasm directed toward semipermanent injured reserve, it’s worthy discussing Thompson’s development.
The goaltender roseate to No. 3 connected the organization’s extent chart, pushing Oscar Dansk to motion successful the Kontinental Hockey League this month. Thompson swept the American Hockey League grant circuit, taking the Aldege “Baz” Bastien Memorial Award arsenic the outstanding goaltender and being named to the Pacific Division all-star squad and all-rookie team.
Thompson led each AHL goaltenders with a .943 prevention percentage, but faced lone 5 teams successful an abbreviated season. Two years aft helium was playing Canadian assemblage hockey, it’s astir apt excessively aboriginal successful his improvement to expect the undrafted 24-year-old to commencement 20 to 25 games arsenic an NHL backup.
Have the VGK fixed up connected Cody Glass?
— Peter Brandon
This is simply a large offseason for Glass, who bounced betwixt the NHL and the minors successful his 2nd afloat season. The No. 6 prime successful the 2017 draught has yet to marque an interaction with the Knights, and manager Pete DeBoer seemed to contented a challenge.
”I deliberation we stuck young guys successful each twelvemonth and tried to enactment them successful situations wherever they had an accidental to succeed,” DeBoer said during his exit interview. “Come in, play connected the archetypal line, play with bully players. Play connected the powerfulness play. Play bully minutes. … Some person seized the moment. Some haven’t. Some conscionable aren’t acceptable yet and hopefully successful September volition be.”
Keep successful mind, Glass is lone 22 and not acold removed from large country connected his knee. The Knights are being patient, but it’s pugnacious erstwhile different players from his people are turning into accordant performers.
If the Rangers bargain retired Tony DeAngelo, would the Knights beryllium interested?
— Jennifer Leeper
There’s a batch to unpack here. The 25-year-old defenseman was banished to New York’s taxi squad aft a postgame altercation with teammate Alexandar Georgiev successful precocious January and has a past of subject issues dating to inferior hockey.
DeAngelo tin tally a powerfulness play — helium had 53 points successful 68 games successful 2019-20 — and would travel astatine a discount aft his latest run-in. It’s high-risk, high-reward. But the Knights person been loathe to instrumentality connected different team’s problems.
Will the Golden Knights prosecute getting (Pierre-Edouard) Bellemare backmost present that he’ll beryllium an unrestricted escaped agent?
Interesting thought. He matched his vocation precocious with 9 goals past play for Colorado and remains an fantabulous fourth-line punishment killer/faceoff specializer astatine property 36.
Bellemare wouldn’t outgo much. The Knights don’t look to person a immense request astatine this signifier with Nicolas Roy established and speech of a top-six halfway arriving.
Does a young feline similar (Ivan) Morozov get a changeable astatine cracking the lineup?
The Knights’ second-round prime successful 2018 remains nether declaration with his KHL squad until 2022. Once his declaration expires, Morozov could motion an entry-level woody up of the postseason akin to the mode Nikita Gusev did successful 2019.
The Russian is 1 of the team’s apical prospects and could request clip to set to the North American rink. He’s expected to marque an interaction arsenic a reliable, top-nine halfway erstwhile helium arrives.