No one in or around the Vegas Golden Knights organization is thinking about anything other than tomorrow’s Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final. A strong road performance could give the team a 3-0 stranglehold on the series and send them well on their way to fulfilling owner Bill Foley’s original “Cup in six years” proclamation.
It’s never too early to start talking about the future, however, and Vegas does have some notable storylines that will dot their offseason, which begins later this month regardless of the Final’s result. One of them is their goaltending situation – breakout netminder Adin Hill is an unrestricted free agent at season’s end.
Today, The Athletic’s Joe Smith released an extensive profile piece on the 27-year-old, in which he noted Vegas made an extension offer to Hill in March after he sustained a lower-body injury that kept him out for the rest of the regular season. Smith says it was a “nice” raise above his current $2.175MM cap hit, but Hill didn’t want to begin negotiations until Vegas’ season concluded.
Hill has done more than enough to earn the commitment, rocketing himself to Vegas’ likely Conn Smythe winner despite not even seeing the ice in the first round against the Winnipeg Jets. But Vegas’ goaltending situation is one of the murkier ones in the league heading into 2023-24, and a Hill extension would likely cause a cascading effect.
37-year-old Jonathan Quick likely won’t be brought back after coming over from Los Angeles (via Columbus) at the deadline. He played well in a few appearances for Vegas down the stretch, but the pending UFA is more than likely destined for retirement.
One player who likely deserves an extension but won’t get one is 30-year-old Laurent Brossoit, who played well above his pay grade in the playoffs before getting injured in the second round against Edmonton. That’s because Vegas still has early-season Calder candidate Logan Thompson waiting in the wings after missing the past few months with a lower-body injury, and veteran Robin Lehner (who missed the entire regular season and playoffs) could be ready to go next year as well.
With a 20-player roster, CapFriendly projects Vegas with under $3.5MM in cap space for 2023-24 including a healthy Lehner.