Well, here’s a rumor to get you going on NHL Expansion Draft day. Matthew Sekeres of TSN Radio in Vancouver reports that there’s a chance the Flyers could acquire players, picks or both from the Vegas Golden Knights in return for the No. 2 overall pick.
We’d have to expect that in any deal like this, the Flyers would merely move down to Vegas’ original first round selection in the No. 6 spot. That would still afford the Flyers the opportunity to acquire a good first round pick -- Cody Glass, Gabriel Vilardi, Casey Mittelstadt, Miro Heiskanen, etc. — but it would obviously remove them from the Nico Hischier and Nolan Patrick conversation.
In order for this to be palatable at all for Flyers fans who have lathered themselves up in excitement over winning the No. 2 pick in the Draft Lottery and thus the chance at Nico or Nolan, this would have to be a hell of a trade for Philadelphia.
If this is how Hextall has decided to solve his goaltending situation for 2017-18, for example by acquiring Marc-Andre Fleury from the Golden Knights as the main piece in this deal, that would be ... infuriating. As we discussed last week, Fleury makes sense in the right context, and in no way does that context involve giving up the No. 2 overall pick in a draft that’s widely considered to have two clear prospects at the top of it.
If this deal were to acquire a plethora of first round picks from Vegas, that would be annoying since we are all so excited for No. 2, but could be a smart strategy if Hextall isn’t completely sold on Nico or Nolan. Move back and add more chances to hit on a really good first round prospect or two.
Here’s what our friends at Knights On Ice, SB Nation’s new Golden Knights blog, are thinking about this, for the record:
I mean, VGK will have probably half the draft in its back pocket. Why not go for broke? The Flyers probably will not give in, but it’s something to monitor.
And hey, it could involve picks and players, Fleury and/or otherwise. We can’t really judge this until if and when it happens, and we’ll stress that this is a wild day with a lot of rumors flying around. There is no telling where it’s all going to land by 8 p.m. tonight when the NHL Expansion Draft picks are announced, or by 7 p.m. Friday when the NHL Draft kicks off in Chicago.