The Islanders have a deal in place that could involve Nikolay Kulemin, Jaroslav Halak or Thomas Hickey, according to a report from Newsday.
The deal would send the Islanders’ first round pick in Friday’s NHL Draft to Vegas in exchange for the Golden Knights selecting an unknown player in the expansion draft. The report also indicates that a third piece could be going to Vegas, with the possibility of it being Grabovski.
An earlier version of the report indicated that Kulemin would be the players the Golden Knights would select in the expansion draft as part of the deal, but was later revised remove specific player names. The move is believed to be one to help the Islanders clear cap space as general manager Garth Snow looks to improve the roster this offseason.
TSN was first to report the possibility of a deal with the Golden Knights on Monday hours after the team revealed their nine player protected list.
The Islanders protected John Tavares, Andrew Ladd, Anders Lee, Johnny Boychuk, Ryan Pulock, Adam Pelech, Nick Leddy, Travis Hamonic and Thomas Greiss. To the surprise of many Brock Nelson, Ryan Strome and Calvin de Haan were among the 25 players left unprotected.
Monday’s report could explain the reasoning behind why Islanders general manager Garth Snow left those players vulnerable in the expansion draft.
Snow and the Islanders have been connected to several trade rumors prior to Saturday’s trade freeze, which included names like Matt Duchene and Jordan Eberle. Both players have been linked to the Islanders for quite some time and they both carry a $6 million cap hit.