Vegas can offer a solution if goalies are depressed
The Toronto Maple Leafs start this season with Matt Murray and Ilya Samsonov in goal. If they are disappointing, the Golden Knights may have the solution.
In an even bigger salary cap than the Toronto Maple Leafs, Vegas will play the majority of its season without first-choice goaltender Robin Lehner.
That leaves them with Logan Thompson, who is yet to be tested on a full campaign and Laurent Brossoit, who will also potentially start the year on injured reserve.
This is where they become potentially useful to the Leafs. The Golden Knights just acquired Adin Hill from the San Jose Sharks, which means they have four goaltenders on their roster, although two are on the disabled list.
How can this help the Toronto Maple Leafs?
Quite simply, the Leafs will rely on Murray and Samsonov to get the job done in net, especially since their next best options are Erik Kallgren and Joseph Woll.
However, if one of the Leafs’ first-choice NHL goaltenders gets injured or just doesn’t prove to be up to snuff, the Golden Knights could at some point be in a position of need in terms of treatment. ‘a goalkeeper just to stay within the cap.
This shortly after the same Vegas Golden Knights had to pay an extra player, only for the Carolina Hurricanes to remove Max Pacioretty due to their mismanagement of the cap. In fact, it makes the Leafs’ cap compliance issues incredibly small by comparison. (With not a single bad contract on the roster, the Leafs are actually in good shape).
All of this ultimately means that one of Brossoit, Hill or Thompson could very well find themselves available at a greatly reduced price, out of sheer necessity, especially if the Golden Knights find themselves languishing in an out of contention position in January.
Right now, the Vegas Golden Knights are currently over the salary cap by $10 million (per CapFriendly) and while Shea Weber and Robin Lehner are giving them some relief, there’s every chance they’re incredibly tight throughout the season.
Obviously, we’re talking real worst-case scenarios here for the Toronto Maple Leafs, but let’s not forget that Matt Murray has had some real injury-ravaged campaigns since his two Stanley Cup wins in his debut with the Penguins. of Pittsburgh.
Granted, there are worse options and others with far less NHL experience than the aforementioned Golden Knights trio.
Laurent Brossoit may not have been fantastic for the Vegas Golden Knights last season, but he certainly showed a lot of promise behind Connor Hellebuyck in Winnipeg. Likewise, Adin Hill is not a bona fide starter, but has proven to be a consistent option in Arizona and San Jose.
Logan Thompson is probably the least likely to become available, given that his entry-level contract and waiver-exempt status make him so valuable to a tight-cap team like Vegas.
However, if Lehner looks to return anytime this regular season, the Golden Knights will have a hard time getting Hill or Brossoit through waivers or not having to trade either of them; something the Toronto Maple Leafs will be absolutely aware of.
The hope will of course be that it doesn’t go south with the new goalkeeping duo of Murray and Samsonov and any foray into the market won’t solve dilemmas in the short term, due to the risks involved in signing the Toronto Maple Leafs.
It is worth keeping an eye on the situation in the desert; it may have no relevance for the Leafs, but it’s also a very valuable card to play if need be.