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Golden Knights and William Karlsson progressing towards long-term deal, per report

At long last, Golden Knights news!

New York Islanders v Vegas Golden Knights Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

The Golden Knights could reach a long-term agreement with restricted free agent William Karlsson in the next few weeks, according to NHL insider Pierre LeBrun.

This is a significant development and the first news out of Vegas in quite some time.

The Knights will be forced to make difficult decisions this summer due to considerable salary cap restraints. As a result, Karlsson’s future in Vegas has been uncertain amidst speculation that he could be a trade candidate or possibly the recipient of an offer sheet as one of many notable RFA’s around the league.

However, it appears as though Vegas will retain the services of the 26-year-old as he enters the prime of his career.

Karlsson has been a key component of Vegas’ success over the last two years and has established himself as a top-line center. He has a combined 67 goals and 134 points in two seasons with the Golden Knights, including 24 goals and 56 points this season, 37 of which came at 5-on-5.

LeBrun did not provide details of a potential deal, but it’s possible it could be in the $7 million AAV range, especially since Kevin Hayes recently signed a seven-year, $50 million extension with the Flyers.

Karlsson is coming off the one-year, $5.25 million extension he signed last summer, but a significant pay raise could be in store.

That will necessitate at least a few trades by Vegas this offseason since the Knights’ salary cap is currently over $83 million.

It’s possible one of those moves could come this weekend during the NHL Entry Draft in which Vegas holds nine picks, including the No. 17 selection in the first round.