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Golden Knights acquire Ryan Reaves, fourth-round pick in three-team trade with Penguins and Senators

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This is ... interesting. Vegas sends Tobias Lindberg to Pittsburgh and retains 40 percent of Derick Brassard’s salary.

NHL: Winnipeg Jets at Pittsburgh Penguins Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Ladies and gentlemen, we finally have ourselves a trade.

After several hours of negotiations (and re-negotiations), the Golden Knights have acquired Ryan Reaves and the Vancouver Canucks’ 2018 fourth-round draft selection from the Pittsburgh Penguins in exchange for prospect Tobias Lindberg. In addition, the Golden Knights are also eating 40 percent ($2 million) of Derick Brassard’s salary, giving Pittsburgh the cap room to take on his contract.

So yeah. This trade is, uh, interesting.

On paper, the Golden Knights aren’t giving up much to get Reaves and the fourth-round pick, but losing cap space and a 22-year-old prospect in the process is certainly a head-scratcher, and it’s difficult to pinpoint exactly how this makes the team any better.

The acquisition of Reaves, in particular, likely isn’t something many Golden Knights fans will be too thrilled about. Reaves, 31, is a career fourth-liner who provides next to nothing other than physical play (and fighting skills) at the NHL level. It’s possible Reaves could be sent down to play in the AHL with the Chicago Wolves (which would be ideal), but if he ends up staying in Vegas and is given a full-time role as a bottom-liner with the Golden Knights, it likely won’t make much of a positive impact on the team. Especially with younger, more talented forwards waiting in the wings to earn a full-time role with Vegas.

Judging by general manager George McPhee’s comments on Reaves, though, it definitely sounds like he’ll be playing quite a bit over the next couple months.

“Ryan is a big, strong guy with some grit who brings some depth, and he can play,” said McPhee during the intermission of Friday night’s game against Vancouver. “The tough guys in this league, many of them have been ruled obsolete and they can’t play, but this guy can play.”

Reaves, a veteran of eight years, was originally drafted by the Blues in the fifth round (No. 156 overall) of the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. The Winnipeg native has registered a grand total of 31 goals and 59 points in 477 career games (most of which were played with the St. Louis Blues). He’s also compiled nearly 800 penalty minutes since joining the league in 2010.

How big a role will Reaves have in Vegas? That remains to be seen. But then again, maybe this is just the first of a number moves Vegas will make before Monday’s trade deadline. Or maybe it’s the only move they’ll make.

“I never know what’s going to transpire at the trade deadline,” said McPhee. “I don’t think anyone does. All GMs are likely making calls that, again, to see what might be out there to help a club now or in the future. I obviously don’t know. We’ll keep talking to people and it could be a lot, it could be nothing. I don’t know.”

Stay with us as we continue to dissect this move in the coming days.


The Vegas Golden Knights appear (!) to be on the verge of making a trade.

It was reported Friday afternoon that the Pittsburgh Penguins had come to an agreement with the Ottawa Senators to acquire forward Derick Brassard in exchange for a 2018 first-round pick, defenseman Ian Cole and goaltender Filip Gustavsson.

Then hockey insider Bob McKenzie dropped this little nugget:

Okay, so what are the Golden Knights going to get?

Well, we don’t know. At least for now.

The initial deal was reportedly rejected by the NHL. The three teams are reworking the deal, though, so it’s only a matter of time before something becomes official.

The details of the trade are still murky, but it wouldn’t be surprising if Vegas ends up eating some of Brassard’s salary, flips him to Pittsburgh and acquires Cole, who Vegas was reportedly interested in back in November.

Three-way trades don’t happen too often in the NHL, but we certainly have a big one brewing right now.