After Thursday we learned that the Golden Knights announce That Max Pasuretti is out indefinitely after wrist surgery. What we don’t know yet is how Pacioretty’s indefinite absence might affect how the Golden Knights might fit Jack Eichel under the salary cap.
The Golden Knights announces the indefinite exit of Max Pacioretty
There’s no doubt about it, when people heard about Max Pasuritti going out indefinitely, many thought about the implications of the salary cap for the Golden Knights. How can not you?
After all, while Pacioretty’s ($7 million) cap doesn’t completely eliminate Eichel’s ($10 million) cap, it will relieve much of the pressure of the potential salary cap for the Golden Knights.
But it would be ridiculous to consider Pacioretty losing so much time (maybe the rest of the regular season?) as a “good thing”.
Actively encouraging VGK fans to get their players injured for the rest of the season is one of the strangest things I’ve ever seen in the sport.
– SinBin.vegas (@SinBinVegas) December 30, 2021
While Mark Stone deserves every bit of his hype as an elite NHL winger, people may be sleeping over Pacioretty’s latest act. The Patches have clearly been fruitful, including this season so far (21 points in 16 games).
– JFresh (@JFreshHockey) December 30, 2021
Despite the salary cap talk/Eshel talk about the Golden Knights, it’s worth noting that Passuretti has dealt with a lot of health headaches this season. Earlier, he lost significant time with what is believed to be a broken foot.
So, no… It’s too easy to view this as a promising development for the Golden Knights. Pacioretty is very effective, and we still don’t know a) when Eichel will be ready and b) how effective it will be at getting rid of bats, in general.
But this simplifies things a little.
Mesh for cover placement
Between injuries and the absence of COVID, there is some significant confusion regarding each element of setting the Golden Knights salary cap.
According to Cap Friendly’s listings, Eichel and quite a few other Golden Knights are currently sitting on LTIR:
Mark Stone is on (vanilla?) IR, while Robin Lehner deals with an injury. Alex Pietrangelo and Evgenii Dadonov seem to have recently left the COVID protocol, while Brett Howden (and coach Peter DeBoer) is still on that list.
That’s a lot of money, but then again, Pacioretty and his $7 million hat will likely go to LTIR to solve much (if not all) of the Eichel puzzle for the Golden Knights.
[PHT Year in Review: Top stories of 2021]
However, it is not a completely clean case. Ideally, the Golden Knights would have time to acclimate Eichel to Pacioretty and Stone – in particular, but not only, if they ended up forming a super line. It wouldn’t be possible before the post-season period if Pacioretty were to continue with the LTIR. (This lack of familiarity creates at least one wrinkle compared to walking the tightrope with Nikita Kucherov last season.)
It probably wouldn’t matter because of the massive pool of talent at hand. The gentle action-loving golden knights might have more curves planned.
Whatever happens, it will be fun to watch, although you can also describe the feeling of watching Stone and Pacioretty make great hockey together.
James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Leave him a line firstname.lastname@example.org Or follow him on Twitter Tweet embed.