Editor’s note: Vegas finally has a roster. It’s time to get excited. Over the next couple of weeks, we will be introducing you to these new Golden Knights players.
One of the more surprising trades during the expansion draft was the one between the Vegas Golden Knights and New York Islanders. Most notably because it brought Mikhail Grabovski to Vegas.
The Golden Knights selected J-F Berube in the expansion draft and agreed to take on Grabovski’s cap hit, and the Islanders sent the 15th overall pick of last week’s NHL Draft (which they used to select Erik Brannstrom), and a 2019 second-round pick.
Unfortunately, we might not get to see him play in a Vegas uniform.
Grabovski missed all of last year with a concussion and has yet to pass a physical. Worse, it was his third concussion since the 2014-15 season. While he has finally begun skating again, we already know that he will not be cleared to play next season. At this point, his career is in question.
When healthy, the 33-year-old Grabovski is a fine middle-six center who can chip in a bit offensively, though his most productive years are behind him. The 5-foot-11, 186-pound Germany product was a fifth-round pick in 2004.
Numbers, numbers, numbers
This is a bit of a sad exercise, as we're likely not to see him play, but he’s had positive possession numbers over his career with a 52.11 Corsi For percentage throughout his career, and he’s posted a 52.28 Goals For percentage.
He has 125 goals and 171 assists in 534 NHL games. In 2015-16, he played 58 games and scored a solid 25 points (nine goals, 16 assists. Twenty-two of those came during 5-v-5 play.
Grabovski comes with a $5 million cap hit for one more season and will likely find his way onto the Long Term Injury Reserve (LTIR) this season.
It is a shame we probably won't see Grabovski on the team. He would have been useful as a middle-six center for the Golden Knights.
If nothing else, trading for his cap hit gave the Golden Knights a couple of draft picks, one of which became a very good defensive prospect.
All numbers by puckalytics.