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Malcolm Subban claimed on waivers from Boston, per report

Former first-round pick adds depth between the pipes for the Golden Knights

NHL: Chicago Blackhawks at Boston Bruins
Malcolm Subban looks forward to a new beginning in Vegas.
Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

As first reported by Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet, the Vegas Golden Knights have claimed goaltender Malcolm Subban from the Boston Bruins.

Subban, 23, was the second goalie drafted in the 2012 Entry Draft — following Andrei Vasilevskiy — and now gives the Knights two of the top three goalies drafted that year, joining current AHL netminder Oscar Dansk.

Despite his early draft status, Subban has never been able to get a foothold at the NHL level thanks in part to a revolving door of elite play from his fellow netminders in Providence:

Malcolm Subban vs. Providence competition

Year Player GP SV% GAA
Year Player GP SV% GAA
2016-17 Zane McIntyre 31 0.930 2.03
Malcolm Subban 32 0.917 2.41
2015-16 Jeremy Smith 20 0.934 2.02
Malcolm Subban 27 0.911 2.46
2014-15 Jeremy Smith 39 0.933 2.05
Malcolm Subban 35 0.921 2.44
2013-14 Niklas Svedberg 45 0.910 2.63
Malcolm Subban 33 0.920 2.31

Apart from that first season, Subban has never been the No. 1 goalie in AHL Providence despite putting up above-average numbers each season.

Since Tuukka Rask is not abdicating his throne any time soon, it made sense that Boston had little to lose by cutting ties with the middle Subban child. However, it is not a great look for the franchise when every first pick from nine consecutive drafts is no longer with them, as pointed out by Dan Bahl on Twitter.

So, what are the Knights getting with P.K. Subban‘s brother? It’s tough to say. The 23-year-old’s brief tastes of NHL action have been disastrous — 5.81 goals against average, .727 save percentage — but two games a player does not make. Instead, consider his career .918 SV% in 127 AHL regular season contests and a .919 mark in 11 playoff affairs. Current NHL starters have done less, and goaltenders are historically difficult to properly appraise in their first few years.

Even Calvin Pickard, the current No. 2 man in Vegas, had just a .914 SV% in his AHL career, and few would question his big league bona fides.

As it stands now, this is a low-risk move for the Knights with the potential to pay dividends down the road.

As our friends over at Stanley Cup of Chowder point out, this is the third commodity the Knights have pilfered from Boston, joining defenseman Colin Miller and play-by-play man Dave Goucher.

In addition, this will be the Knights’ first positive experience with a Subban this year, after Malcolm and P.K.’s brother Jordan torched Griffin Reinhart and went top-shelf in the first preseason game this year.