Acquired from the Pittsburgh Penguins at the trade deadline in February, Reaves, 31, registered a pair of assists in 21 games with the Golden Knights last season. He also scored a pair of goals in the playoffs, including the series-clincher against the Winnipeg Jets, sending Vegas to the Stanley Cup Final.
Reaves’ arrival in Vegas was initially met with significant criticism. And for good reason. The Winnipeg native has earned a reputation as a face-punching brute incapable of staying out of the penalty box. Surprisingly, though, Reaves was assessed just two minor penalties in his last 19 appearances with Vegas during the regular season.
While Reaves’ play during the regular season left much to be desired, he did make notable strides in the postseason, logging a solid 55.76 Corsi For percentage at 5v5 in 10 appearances (though much of his success can be attributed to the stellar play of linemates Tomas Nosek and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare).
Reaves is a physical specimen who brings some much-needed muscle to the Knights’ roster, but he’ll need to return to his postseason form for Vegas to benefit from this two-year deal. If he reverts back to his old ways of taking careless penalties, it’s quite likely he could find himself watching games from the press box.
UPDATE: Dreger confirms that Reaves’ contract has an average annual value of $2.775 million. A hefty price for a player who registered just two points for the Golden Knights last season.