February 12, 2019 | 9:59am ET
KNIGHTS EXPLORING TRADE MARKET
George McPhee, GM
The Vegas Golden Knights are trying to battle for first in the Pacific Division, currently they own the third spot, and GM George McPhee has been looking for ways to further improve his hockey club.
According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, McPhee has been “actively working the phone lines,” but might not be in the market for a top available pending free agent/rental player.
McPhee admitted to the paper that “we have cap space to do things, but the inclination is to not take on rentals,” which could suggest he’s looking at bringing in a player with term remaining on his contract.
The Knights appear to be confident in their group up front and could focus on trying to add a defenceman before the Feb. 25 trade deadline.
“There are years where you feel like you have to do something to help your team, and there are years you look at your team and say, ‘It’s a solid team and we like it as is.’ And that’s how we feel this year,” McPhee said. “We’re a pretty solid team, and we’re not interested in taking anyone off of our team, off our roster. We’ll be involved, and we’ll see where it goes.”
The Knights have been linked to some of the top potential rentals, such as Columbus Blue Jackets star Artemi Panarin, Ottawa Senators winger Mark Stone and New York Rangers winger Mats Zuccarello, but if the team isn’t inclined to give up top assets – providing a deal doesn’t fall into their lap – they may stay away from the big fish, especially after McPhee’s comments.
Senators defenceman Cody Ceci has reportedly been a point of interest for Vegas and the team could focus on trying to acquire him, or another controllable defenceman.