NHL Free Agency: Golden Knights re-sign Tomas Nosek and Brandon Pirri, add four depth players
Pierre-Edouard Bellemare and Ryan Carpenter have moved on, though.
The Vegas Golden Knights have re-signed forwards Tomas Nosek and Brandon Pirri, the team announced Monday.
Nosek agreed to terms on a one-year, $1 million deal, while Pirri inked a two-year deal with an AAV of $775,000.
The club also added some depth with the signings of forwards Patrick Brown and Tyrell Goulbourne and defensemen Jaycob Megna and Brett Lernout.
Nosek was expected to re-sign with the club and therefore did not receive a qualifying offer. The fourth-line winger is coming off career highs in goals (8), assists (9) and points (17) and gets a slight pay raise after signing a one-year, $962,500 contract last summer.
The Pirri contract comes as a bit of a surprise, though. The 28-year-old scored 12 goals and 18 points in 31 games with the Knights last season and played a key role as a call-up in mid-December, scoring 13 points (eight goals, five assists) in his first 11 games. His production faded down the stretch, though he eventually drew into the lineup for Game 7 of the first-round series against San Jose.
Pirri was expected to test free agency after his impressive performance, but he’ll have a chance to compete for a roster spot as he returns to Vegas for another two years on a very team-friendly two-way deal.
However, the same cannot be said for unrestricted free agents Pierre-Edouard Bellemare and Ryan Carpenter, who will not call Sin City their home for the 2019-20 season. Bellemare signed a two-year, $3.6 million deal with the Avalanche, while Carpenter signed a three-year, $3 million deal with the Blackhawks.
Maxime Lagace will be leaving the Knights organization as well after signing a one-year, $700,000 deal with Boston.
Vegas added some new faces to the mix, though.
The Knights signed Brown and Goulbourne to two-year, $1.4 million contracts, both carrying an AAV of $700,000, though the second year of Brown’s deal is a one-way contract.
Brown has been part of the Hurricanes organization for the last five seasons, most recently playing with the Calder Cup champion Charlotte Checkers, Carolina’s AHL affiliate.
Brown, who served as the Checkers’ captain, scored 19 goals and 35 points in 70 games with Charlotte last season, adding five goals and 10 points in 11 postseason games. The 27-year-old also played eight playoff games with Carolina but failed to find the scoresheet in that time.
Brown is the second Charlotte skater the Knights have added in the last week after acquiring Nicolas Roy in the Erik Haula trade last week. He is the most notable signing of the four, and he certainly can help the Chicago Wolves as they look to contend for the Calder next season.
Joining him will be Goulbourne, who signed a two-year, $1.4 million contract, as well as defensemen Megna and Lernout, who both signed one-year, $700,000 deals.
Goulbourne has 11 games of NHL experience under his belt, all with the Philadelphia Flyers. The gritty forward scored nine goals and 18 points in 63 games with the AHL’s Lehigh Valley Phantoms last season.
Megna played 28 games with the Ducks last year, posting one goal and four points, while Lernout spent all of last season with the Laval Rocket, Montreal’s AHL affiliate; he recorded four goals and nine points in 74 games.
Though Vegas has been busy this offseason, the Knights were never going to be particularly active in free agency given the team’s significant cap constraints. Moving the contracts of Haula and Colin Miller cleared $6.625 million in cap space, but the $5.9 million cap hit for William Karlsson’s eight-year extension makes that a virtual wash.
Vegas’ salary cap now stands at roughly $84.175 million, according to CapFriendly. The salary cap for the 2019-20 season was set at $81.5 million.
Nikita Gusev, Malcolm Subban, Jimmy Schuldt and Jake Bischoff remain restricted free agents, though it’s possible Gusev could be moved.
“There’s definitely interest in him,” McPhee on Nikita Gusev. #VegasBorn— Danny Webster (@DannyWebster21) July 1, 2019
The team is expected to re-sign Deryk Engelland to a one-year deal, though the contract has yet to be finalized.