Expansion Vegas loads up on D-men, could make more trades

Golden Knights have options to build team in variety of directions

"Obviously, we've got great fans already, having sold out the season tickets and the reception we had tonight here, " Fleury said after he walked out on stage in a Golden Knights jersey. One of the things that GM George McPhee did so well in the expansion draft was orchestrating deals that allowed teams to keep their players in exchange for a draft pick or a prospect.

The Vegas Golden Knights announced their full roster during the NHL Awards in Las Vegas on Wednesday night, filling a roster with at least one player from all 30 current teams.

Host John Matisz is joined by Matthew Coller, NHL writer for ESPN Insider and Wild analyst for 1500 ESPN, to recap and assess the Vegas expansion draft just hours after its completion.

Goaltenders Jean-Francois Berube (NY Islanders), Marc-Andre Fleury (Pittsburgh), Calvin Pickard (Colorado).

Call it a change of scenery, but Marchessault looked a lot more comfortable with the Panthers, as he was given a top-six role rather quickly due to injuries on the roster.

"I think it'll be great", Engelland said. From Fleury on out, Vegas already has a solid National Hockey League roster with a sturdy blue line and four lines of capable forwards. The Knights added two more first round picks - both in this year's draft and in the top 15 - as well as four second round picks, one third rounder, and one each in the fourth, fifth and sixth rounds of the upcoming four drafts.

Vegas is taking risks here, but that's what they need to do.

The Golden Knights do not have a player who has previously been captain of a team, but they still have plenty of options based on experience. It's enough time for him to shape the roster using more than what he could get in the draft (or as a result of players chosen in the draft). "They've got some smart guys up there, and they know exactly what they are doing".

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He was held with two other men, Stephen McGown , a South African national, and Sjaak Rijke, from the Netherlands. According to Swedish media reports, Gift of the Givers had been negotiating a ransom with the hostage-takers.

Glass was selected by the expansion Vegas Golden Knights with their first-ever pick Friday night, going No. 6 overall as part of a parade of forwards at the top of the National Hockey League draft.

The Golden Knights announced two more trades Thursday, running their total to 13 selections for this year's draft. Vegas appeared to land a particularly strong corps of blueliners through draft choices and trades, providing the foundation for the tough, young team envisioned by McPhee.

Calgary made a similar attempt in goal at the draft past year, landing Brian Elliott from St. Louis. Few players in the National Hockey League have a release as quick as Neal, who has scored 20 or more goals in six straight seasons, including 31 two seasons ago and 40 in 2011-12.

First-round picks nearly always see action in the NHL - just 13 percent have not skated at least one game in the league - and, on average, are 50-point scorers if the pick is a forward.

For that to happen, the team needs players that can grow with the team. One is to go get the very best players available, believing that the best way to build a foundation for a team and a fanbase is to be as competitive as you can and give fans a reason to get and stay invested.

That transition to the desert will be easier for some Golden Knights: Deryk Engelland has lived in Las Vegas in the off-season for a decade. "Definitely ready for that part of it".

ROLLING THE DICE: Maybe Vegas wants to groom its starter of the future, in which case Grubauer, Boston's Malcolm Subban, Detroit's Jared Coreau or Toronto's Antoine Bibeau could fit the bill. The Ducks traded the promising Theodore to stop Vegas from selecting defensemen Sami Vatanen and Josh Manson - and to persuade the Golden Knights to take Clayton Stoner instead, removing his onerous contract from the five-time defending Pacific Division champions' books.

When Murray suffered an injury during warmups of the first game of the playoffs, Fleury stepped in and would eventually lead his team to the Eastern Conference Final.

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