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How Do You Feel About The Vegas Golden Knights Being In The Stanley Cup Final?

from Don Brennan of the Ottawa Sun,

The NHL must be very happy about this miraculous Golden Knights season that has put a first-year team into the Stanley Cup final.

The people in and around Las Vegas are now hooked on the game.

Seattle must be licking its chops.

But what about the owners of 30 other teams? How are they feeling? Are they still counting their cut from the expansion fee, or are they starting to get upset with the format that stocked the Vegas team?...

The Vegas success makes owners look greedy and uncaring about what should matter most to them.

Shouldn’t you have to pay your dues, or is the going rate for a championship now set at a half billion dollars?

more plus notes from the Jets/Golden Knights series...

Filed in: NHL Teams, NHL Talk, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: vegas+golden+knights

Comments

Tripwire32's avatar

Are they still counting their cut from the expansion fee, or are they starting to get upset with the format that stocked the Vegas team?

They are still counting. Well, most likely getting updates from the people they hired to do the counting for them.


The Vegas success makes owners look greedy and uncaring about what should matter most to them.

Well hello sunshine. You must be new around here. If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it’s a duck. 
Oh…and what matters to you (and you think should matter to others) does not necessarily matter to others.

Posted by Tripwire32 from Kay He Mar Heart on 05/21/18 at 08:48 AM ET

TreKronor's avatar

I’m disappointed they’ve made it this far. I’ve made my statements the past couple months about how Vegas hasn’t had to deal with the salary cap, UFAs, RFAs, etc like other teams, and I’m sticking by it.

I don’t necessarily believe in every team getting a chance, but it’s tough for me to watch the same teams struggle year after year after year, only for the NHL to allow Vegas to put together a very good team that can play a very specific style.

Cool story, and a fun team to watch. But I don’t feel they’ve paid their dues.

Posted by TreKronor on 05/21/18 at 09:13 AM ET

stonehands-78's avatar

Cool story, and a fun team to watch. But I don’t feel they’ve paid their dues.

concur

Posted by stonehands-78 from the beginning ... a WingsFan, on 05/21/18 at 09:23 AM ET

Avatar

Paid their dues? What a bunch of BS. I don’t want to get personal, but this just sounds like whining. I didn’t realize there was such a thing as a team has to be in the league for X number of years before they are allowed to be competitive. Expansion team owner/s pay a TON of money for the right to own a team in this league and if I was doing this, I would want to make sure the league does everything to allow the new team to be competitive right off the bat. It makes business sense.
These guys are playing their hearts out and oh yeah, very well coached. I still laugh at what might have been the dumbest move ever to let Gallant go.

Posted by George0211 on 05/21/18 at 09:49 AM ET

Primis's avatar

It makes me feel like I don’t want to bother with the NHL anymore, because it’s a joke.

I’ve said before, if Vegas wins the Cup, I’m 100% fully done.

Posted by Primis on 05/21/18 at 09:57 AM ET

NHLJeff's avatar

I get the “they haven’t paid their dues” perspective, but 99% of people didn’t start their whining until the team started winning in the playoffs. When the team was first picked, people certainly didn’t think they were even going to the playoffs, much less the final, so it’s frustrating to see all the back trackers saying the team was allowed to be too good because of the rules. I started off sour about it, feeling bad for all of the teams that have never even come close, but the bottom line is that these guys have earned it. They’ve competed in this league all year, and they’ve done what it takes to get this far. It’s an insane story, but they deserve it at this point, and I hope Fleury takes it home for them. I do think it’ll be interesting to see if the fans there still have interest once they realize every year isn’t like this….

Posted by NHLJeff from Pens fan in Denver on 05/21/18 at 10:15 AM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

“If you take Erik Haula instead of Matthew Dumba,” then-Minnesota Wild GM Chuck Fletcher told Vegas GM George McPhee, “we’ll give you Tuch.”

The Wild could protect three defensemen. Why they chose to protect Jonas Brodin over Dumba and then throw Tuch into a deal to encourage Vegas to take Haula is a mystery. I’m sure they never expected Haula to score twice as many goals this year as he’s ever scored in the NHL, but they should have known Tuch had the kind of potential he’s showing in the playoffs. Just one of the reasons Fletcher was fired.

I’m disappointed they’ve made it this far. I’ve made my statements the past couple months about how Vegas hasn’t had to deal with the salary cap, UFAs, RFAs, etc like other teams, and I’m sticking by it.

Posted by TreKronor on 05/21/18 at 09:13 AM ET

But, like all teams, they did deal with a salary cap, TK. And they put together a team with the fifth lowest cap hit in the league. And it was a team made up of players that other teams considered either second-tier players or players who had cap hits they wanted to get rid of. That’s all on the other teams, not on Vegas.

Posted by George0211 on 05/21/18 at 09:49 AM ET

Regarding “paying their dues” and the stupidity of Florida (unceremoniously) firing Gallant, I couldn’t agree with you more, George.

I’ve said before, if Vegas wins the Cup, I’m 100% fully done.

Posted by Primis on 05/21/18 at 09:57 AM ET

Come on, Primis. We all know that once Blashill’s “process” kicks in next year and the Wings are leading the Atlantic division in January, you’ll be back.  grin

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 05/21/18 at 10:51 AM ET

hockeyfreak13's avatar

I don’t like it because it’s making the first round pick that they traded to the Wings worse and worse. That’s it.

If anything, I think it was unfair to the earlier expansion teams that they didn’t receive these “advantages”. I mean, the Wings lost a player who went undrafted and who they were probably going to try to hide in GR for another year. So what? The Wings seem to lose a player like that every year to waivers. Maybe VGK’s success forces GMs like KH to reconsider their loyalty and ridiculous contracts to veterans when it seems like they can be so easily replaced by committee.

Posted by hockeyfreak13 from Grand Rapids on 05/21/18 at 10:56 AM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

Four things contributed to Las Vegas being in the SC, and frankly its not the NHL system that set this up, or the owners collectively.  Consider Seattle in say 2 years, will they have this and if not where does that put them?

1) Marc-Andre Fleury being available, and playing lights out, let’s be real here, he’s the star that is pushing this team to the finals, no MAF, these guys are not competing for the playoffs.

2) Columbus being stupid and trading LV a 1st round pick so they would take Karlsson, think about that for a second. 

3) Florida being stupid gifting LV Smith to take Marchessault !! Think about that for a second

4) Florida being stupid and firing Gallant, and Vegas being smart for choosing him.

Posted by MurrayChadwick from Holland Hate Hyperbole Town (HHHT) on 05/21/18 at 10:58 AM ET

TreKronor's avatar

But, like all teams, they did deal with a salary cap, TK. And they put together a team with the fifth lowest cap hit in the league.

Yeah, but that’s looking at it in a bit of a vacuum.  They didn’t have to re-sign any players who were UFA’s and due big raises, nor did they have to sign RFA’s who were due raises either.  They got to pick and chose who they wanted on the team (most of them being second tier players or young, promising, cheap prospects) so they were able to avoid salary cap constraints for a good year or two.  They also managed to be given (still can’t believe Pitt did it) a world-class goalie with two years left at a VERY modest 5.75 mil cap hit. 

That’s about as good a scenario as you can give a new team. 

For the record, I’ve pointed these things out since about December/January.  Honestly I don’t care a whole bunch since my team wasn’t even a contender this year…I just think it is worth considering the entire scenario before people praise the team. 

If people think this is good and wonderful, they should also be praising Gary Bettman for giving a new team such a dream scenario from the start.

Posted by TreKronor on 05/21/18 at 11:01 AM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

the Wings lost a player who went undrafted and who they were probably going to try to hide in GR for another year. So what? The Wings seem to lose a player like that every year to waivers. Maybe VGK’s success forces GMs like KH to reconsider their loyalty and ridiculous contracts to veterans when it seems like they can be so easily replaced by committee.

Posted by hockeyfreak13 from Grand Rapids on 05/21/18 at 10:56 AM ET

Nosek was not being buried in GR, he would have made the team, he had a great year, he was ready for the move, that’s why Vegas picked him. 

Nosek is the 1st player the wings have lost in a long time that has gone somewhere and will have an NHL career, and they didn’t lose him over contracts, they lost him in the expansion draft like the other teams lost talent. 

My god, its always about Holland sucking, even when the opener revisited Holland’s fleecing of Vegas in the Tatar trade

 

 

Posted by MurrayChadwick from Holland Hate Hyperbole Town (HHHT) on 05/21/18 at 11:02 AM ET

MurrayChadwick's avatar

Posted by TreKronor on 05/21/18 at 11:01 AM ET

Can’t argue with your thoughts, however, the NHL is a business after all and after opening businesses in markets with little to no interest in the product and filling them with subpar employees, they fixed the system like any good business would do.

I still contend that they got lucky as noted above more than anything, they would still be rock solid but MAF and the like is not going to be around the next expansion.

Posted by MurrayChadwick from Holland Hate Hyperbole Town (HHHT) on 05/21/18 at 11:05 AM ET

TreKronor's avatar

Speaking of Nosek, his 15 points would have had him tied for 16th place in Points on this year’s Wings team.  He would have been behind Bert, Glendenning, and Frk on this squad, just for comparison. 

Vegas was considerably better than Detroit, so that’s not even a fair comparison. 

It’s early, but he may have been worth letting slip through the cracks.

Posted by TreKronor on 05/21/18 at 11:07 AM ET

Avatar

Agree with George, MC, OTC.
I’ll add that the leadership in the room, and team culture have been significant factors as well.

Posted by Ventr on 05/21/18 at 11:15 AM ET

Hootinani's avatar

Aside from the last round where Fleury did the vast majority of the heavy lifting, Vegas has proven to be a hard working, well coached team. Regardless of their perceived advantages, they deserve every bit of success that they get, because they earned it on the ice.

IMO, however, this is an indictment of the NHL as a whole. The league has been so watered down talent-wise that a team cobbled together from the rest of the league’s mid to low level talent is running rough shod over the other teams, because for the most part, they arent assembled much better. Expansion and salary cap have stripped teams of talent until most represent the lowest common denominator. Vegas’ only real “advantage” is having a stellar goaltender and a man with real vision behind the bench.

Posted by Hootinani from the parade following Babs out of town on 05/21/18 at 11:43 AM ET

Tripwire32's avatar

But I don’t feel they’ve paid their dues.

I’d like to add little to George0211 comment that this is exactly the type of nhl the owners want. They want a league of franchises that can rise and fall every year. There’s no more paying dues. Every year the league resets, spins the roulette wheel, and the people pay to watch.

Posted by Tripwire32 from Kay He Mar Heart on 05/21/18 at 11:49 AM ET

Down River Dan's avatar

I guess the last time a first year team reached the Finals was St.Louis in ‘67. But all six expansion teams were in the same division/confrence, so someone was going to the Finals.

I’m torn at their success. Happy for Spuddy proving Florida is run by idiots.

As others have stated, if not for Fleury, there not still around. I mean they’ve only lost ...what?...3 games in the playoffs?!? I think that’s correct. Maybe the analytics guys can explain how there doing it.

Posted by Down River Dan on 05/21/18 at 11:53 AM ET

Steve in San Francisco's avatar

I’ve posted this elsewhere, so sorry if it’s old hat. But it sums up my feelings on the subject pretty well.

https://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/goes-brown-pros-cons-golden-knights-cup-win/

But also, if it wasn’t for MAF playing the best he’s played in his career, VGK wouldn’t have gotten by Sharkie, let alone Winnipeg. Also also, yea, it will be interesting in a couple of years when they don’t make the playoffs and the Raiders get to town, to see how this Knights Fever holds up.

Posted by Steve in San Francisco on 05/21/18 at 12:04 PM ET

hockeyfreak13's avatar

My god, its always about Holland sucking, even when the opener revisited Holland’s fleecing of Vegas in the Tatar trade

Where did I say Holland sucks? Get a grip.

Posted by hockeyfreak13 from Grand Rapids on 05/21/18 at 12:12 PM ET

Paul's avatar

If interested, Justin Bourne of The Athletic,

On any given day on the interwebs, it’s not tough to find a sporting hot take or 10. Ask the wrong people, and you’ll learn that LeBron James is a bum (despite obviously being one of the best players to ever touch a basketball) or that Sidney Crosby is a big baby (despite taking twice the abuse of an average player) or something even dumber: that the Vegas Golden Knights were gifted this path to the Stanley Cup final.

Let’s address that last one because it has been showing up in my Twitter mentions every day lately, and those will be much easier to handle when I can just share a link to this article. It is clearly untrue, yet the conspiracy theories still abound. (Imagine NHL brass sitting around being like “OK, we have to hook Vegas up.” (for some reason). “Let’s set them up with William Karlsson from Columbus. He had nine goals last year!”)

I’ll concede that the Knights had favourable expansion rules, but there wasn’t a person – not one that analyzes the game professionally, anyway – who thought the Knights were going to be any good before the season started. And I’m not talking about pre-expansion draft either.

continued ($$$)

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 05/21/18 at 12:36 PM ET

NIVO's avatar

I guess i see Vegas differently than most here. This team is a team of cast offs from other teams. Or better yet, players that all other teams were willing to let go. And they put this patchwork bunch just right and had/have success. My dark horse favorite in the West was Winnipeg. Fleury took care of that. Expansion or not they played 82 games in regular season just like everyone else.

Posted by NIVO from underpants gnome village on 05/21/18 at 12:48 PM ET

tkfergy's avatar

I’ll concede that the Knights had favourable expansion rules, but there wasn’t a person – not one that analyzes the game professionally, anyway – who thought the Knights were going to be any good before the season started. And I’m not talking about pre-expansion draft either.

This is what I remember, everyone thinking they were going to be in the bottom 5 teams.

Posted by tkfergy on 05/21/18 at 01:14 PM ET

Kate from PA now in SC-made in Detroit's avatar

Against all odds Vegas made it to the SCF. I’m glad they made it. Now, let’s see if they can take it all the way home.

Posted by Kate from PA now in SC-made in Detroit on 05/21/18 at 01:56 PM ET

Kate from PA now in SC-made in Detroit's avatar

IMO, however, this is an indictment of the NHL as a whole. The league has been so watered down talent-wise that a team cobbled together from the rest of the league’s mid to low level talent is running rough shod over the other teams, because for the most part, they arent assembled much better. Expansion and salary cap have stripped teams of talent until most represent the lowest common denominator. Vegas’ only real “advantage” is having a stellar goaltender and a man with real vision behind the bench.

Posted by Hootinani from the parade following Babs out of town on 05/21/18 at 11:43 AM ET

Agree. Their success this season is a very good story as far as the NHL goes. Looks like it’s anyone’s game now. With the exception being that dumpster fire in Phoenix. wink

Posted by Kate from PA now in SC-made in Detroit on 05/21/18 at 02:13 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

I wasn’t that “into” hockey during the previous expansion drafts. So can someone please explain what “disadvatages” previous expansion teams had to deal with compared to Vegas. Could teams protect more players? What was it that handicapped them so much?

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 05/21/18 at 02:17 PM ET

Avatar

Teams could previously protect up to 14 skaters, now only 10. NHL always wanted viable goalies in expansion draft, but previously it was possible to protect two quality goalies. Also, I don’t remember previously that teams were forced to protect no-trade players.
Basically, Vegas was guaranteed to get a bunch of 2nd pairing defenders and 2nd/3rd line forwards, generally relatively cheap in the first year, and the best 2nd goaltender in NHL. They also got several players who wouldn’t be available based on talent, but were available because of salary cap.
Compare that to 1998 - 2000 expansions, where teams had available 3rd pair defenders and 3rd/4th line forwards, and team in Pittsburgh’s situation could have protected both goalies and still same number of skaters as now (or leave MAF exposed and protect all good skaters).

Vegas was always going to be good. Basically, they had top goalie, 2nd/2nd/3rd defense pairing and 2nd/2nd/3rd/3rd offensive line, that is very competitive, as in playoff worthy, in today’s NHL (that is, capped NHL). SCF isn’t surprise, but I didn’t expect it. What Vegas lacks is 1st line/1st pairing star power, but all teams have their holes, and this expansion draft was ideal to ensure that Vegas won’t have real holes.

Big problems will come in second/third year. Most of these players will become RFA/UFA and will expect big raises, and Vegas has no farm system yet, so I expect big drop for 2-3 seasons.

Of course, Vegas success is because of the quality of GM and coach, but other teams (foremost Nashville) had quality front office, yet couldn’t be as successful immediately.

Posted by Davor on 05/21/18 at 04:47 PM ET

Primis's avatar

Also there was no salary cap for all the other teams to contend with, so talented-but-overpaid players weren’t moved to the expansion teams.

Posted by Primis on 05/21/18 at 05:24 PM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

Okay, thanks for the detailed feedback, Davor. I better understand what the issue is for a lot of people now.

But the reality is that almost every Vegas player had a better-than-average year, and some had nearly double their previous best year. So, to me, it looks like management did an excellent job of selecting players and Gallant did a spectacular job of motivating/utilizing them. That’s the real key to their success.

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 05/21/18 at 06:37 PM ET

bigfrog's avatar

Against all odds Vegas made it to the SCF. I’m glad they made it. Now, let’s see if they can take it all the way home.

Why not? The players on Vegas thought they were spare parts cast away by their team(s). They had a chip on their shoulders all season.  confused

Posted by bigfrog on 05/21/18 at 08:44 PM ET

Avatar

I’d like to add that Tomas Tatar continues to be benched and that’s very telling; I loved watching him play and his work ethic but I’m starting to wonder if he isn’t going to cut it in this faster NHL.

Posted by neffernin on 05/21/18 at 08:45 PM ET

Avatar

Four things contributed to Las Vegas being in the SC, and frankly its not the NHL system that set this up, or the owners collectively.  Consider Seattle in say 2 years, will they have this and if not where does that put them?

1) Marc-Andre Fleury being available, and playing lights out, let’s be real here, he’s the star that is pushing this team to the finals, no MAF, these guys are not competing for the playoffs.

2) Columbus being stupid and trading LV a 1st round pick so they would take Karlsson, think about that for a second.

3) Florida being stupid gifting LV Smith to take Marchessault !! Think about that for a second

4) Florida being stupid and firing Gallant, and Vegas being smart for choosing him.

Posted by MurrayChadwick from Holland Hate Hyperbole Town (HHHT) on 05/21/18 at 10:58 AM ET

Agree with this! What makes Vegas winning tolerable is that it directly shows up the other owners and GMs in the NHL - emperors with no clothes

Also fault Tortorella - part of Karlsson’s play is he’s excited to get away from that guy

And the Boston Bruins - basically didn’t let Colin Miller off the bench

But the first star in this is Florida, wouldn’t you guess they dump off a Jack Adams coach and two first-liners with no return

Incidentally, the ultimate concern if you’re Vegas is that the team regresses and becomes just like Florida, which was the previous best expansion team - what a sorry franchise it has been for 15 years, but they were a marvel for their first few. They quickly deviated from what made them successful (Miami Arena to Broward; defense and goaltending to… Bure and nothing) so we’ll see what happens in Vegas

Posted by mtta on 05/21/18 at 09:25 PM ET

Avatar

This is all a load of crap.  After the draft and in the preseason, The VGK couldn’t even ice a “real” 1st line.  They had James Neal, some dead cap dollars, and some picks. 

NO ONE SAW THIS COMING.  NO ONE SAID they would be good enough to even make the playoffs.  They have 5 guys that have had career years, and I’m not including their best player, MAF. 

But get ready, because the Knights are going to good for years until MAF decides to retire.  They have good young players waiting in the wings, and some deferred picks from the expansion draft.  But none of those are why Vegas is going to continue to be good. 

There have been numerous pending RFAs and UFAs looking at the cost of living and how Las Vegas (other than the Strip) has a great atmosphere, weather and growth factors.  The barn is less than 30 minutes away from anywhere in town.

Posted by BobafettVegas on 05/21/18 at 09:29 PM ET

HaHasek's avatar

I don’t know if anyone’s mentioned this (tldr) but Vegas hasn’t had the most difficult road to a cup, have they?

They played 7 & 6 in the West, then got a Jets team that were exhausted from a 1v2 overall 7 game series, and now they’ll get the winner of another 7 game battle in the East.

Considering their style of play (fast, run the other team out) this is pretty much the path to a cup that you would hand-pick if you could.

This is really my only beef with Vegas winning it this year.

Posted by HaHasek on 05/21/18 at 10:58 PM ET

Avatar

And the Boston Bruins - basically didn’t let Colin Miller off the bench

“They protected the wrong Miller!”
-A friend of mine who is a Bruins fan, on seeing that they opted to protect Kevan Miller.

Posted by EthrDemon on 05/23/18 at 03:42 PM ET

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