John Locher/ AP Vegas Golden Knights’ Marc-Andre Fleury, Deryk Engelland and Brayden McNabb, from left, sit on stage throughout an occasion following the NHL expansion draft, Wednesday, June 21, 2017, in Las Vegas. The gamers were chosen by the Golden Knights in the NHL growth draft.
Wednesday, June 21, 2017|9 p.m.
NHL’s biggest super stars took the stage Wednesday night at the NHL Awards Show.
Current gamers Sidney Crosby and Connor McDavid accepted awards while legends such as Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux presented them.
But no one took the stage to a louder ovation than former Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury.
The three-time Stanley Cup champ brought T-Mobile Arena to its feet as he was announced as one of the last choices in the Golden Knights growth draft.
“I wasn’t anticipating that at all,” Fleury stated. “I’m excited to be with a brand-new team and a new company. By the way the crowd was this evening and the method the team is looking, I am delighted.”
Fleury is one of the most reputable players in the league and will certainly be the face of the franchise early on. However the same features that make him that person won’t permit him to admit it.
“I’m not looking to be the face of much– I simply wish to come in and play hockey,” Fleury stated. “I will offer whatever I have actually got to win some games in addition to entering the community to fulfill people and spread the word about the Vegas Golden Knights.”
Fleury silenced the questions of the permanency of his time as a Golden Knight, stating he and his spouse will be house shopping in Las Vegas over the next couple of days.
One expansion selection who will not have to go home shopping is former Calgary Flames defenseman Deryk Engelland. The 35-year-old has resided in Las Vegas for more than a years and had fun with the Las Vegas Wranglers at one point.
“I began here as a Wrangler,” Engelland stated. “To be here and put this jersey on is an honor.”
Fleury headlined a strong group of players picked by General Manager George McPhee, including Predators’ winger James Neal and Panthers center Jonathan Marchessault.
Neal has 238 profession objectives and Marchessault completed this season tied for 8th in the NHL with 30 goals.
The group also accumulated on the blue line, taking defenseman Brayden McNabb from the Kings, Marc Methot from the Senators and Nate Schmidt from the Capitals. And behind Fleury in objective will be two young goaltenders with potential in Calvin Pickard from the Avalanche and Jean-Francois Berube from the Islanders.
More important for the long-term success of the Golden Knights franchise, McPhee had the ability to acquire 11 future draft choices including multiple first-rounders.
“We had two objectives,” McPhee said. “One was to put an amusing group on the ice that the NHL and Las Vegas can be proud of. The second was to obtain potential customers and draft choices that can help us build our group in the future.”
The year of preparation by McPhee and his team appear to have actually settled, as they made out of the growth draft like outlaws. However, all those draft picks suggest nothing unless McPhee can turn them into terrific gamers.
That process starts almost right away. McPhee and his group fly to Chicago Wednesday night for the entry draft where they hold 12 picks, consisting of 3 first-rounders.
They presently choose 6th however there have actually been talks of them potentially moving into the leading two for a possibility at Nolan Patrick, who assistant general manager Kelly McCrimmon worked with at the Canadian junior ice hockey group Brandon Wheat Kings.
Exactly what the future holds for the Golden Knights is anyone’s guess, however tonight was a win for McPhee.
Here are the expansion-draft selects:
Colorado Avalanche– Calvin Pickard, Goaltender
Vancouver Canucks– Luca Sbisa, Defense
Arizona Coyotes– Teemu Pulkkinen, Left Wing
New Jersey Devils– Jon Merrill, Defense
Buffalo Sabres– William Provider, Left Wing
Detroit Red Wings– Tomas Nosek, Left Wing
Dallas Stars– Cody Eakin, Center
Florida Panthers– Jonathan Marchessault, Center
Los Angeles Kings– Brayden McNabb, Defense
Carolina Hurricanes– Connor Brickley, Center
Winnipeg Jets– Chris Thorburn, Extreme right
Philadelphia Flyers– Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, Extreme right
Tampa Bay Lightning– Jason Fort, Defenseman
New york city Islanders– Jean-François Bérubé, Goaltender
Nashville Predators– James Neal Right Wing
Calgary Flames– Derek Engelland, Defenseman
Toronto Maple Leafs– Brendan Leipsic, Left Wing
Boston Bruins– Colin Miller, Defenseman
Ottawa Senators– Marc Methot, Defenseman
San Jose Sharks– David Schlemko, Defenseman
St. Louis Blues– David Perron, Left Wing
New York Rangers– Oscar Lindberg, Center
Edmonton Oilers– Griffin Reinhart, Defenseman
Montreal Canadiens– Elexei Emelin, Defenseman
Anaheim Ducks– Clayton Stoner
Minnesota Wild– Erik Haula
Columbus Blue Jackets– William Karlsson
Chicago Blackhawks– Trevor van Reimsdyk
Pittsburgh Penguins– Marc-Andre Fleury
Washington Capitals– Nate Schmidt