One of the common themes revolving around the Golden Knights over the past few seasons has been the concept of loyalty. Actually, it’s dishonest in VGK’s case, but you get the point.
In their unabashed effort to improve the team at any cost, the Golden Knights had to make some tough decisions along the way. It’s easy to applaud them for the lost enthusiasm from many front offices around the league, but the clamor for crossing the unwritten line between hockey business and human abuse is becoming unmistakable.
As long as you don’t, Vegas will treat you well. They’ve gone from Team Luck, ‘The Golden Inequality’ or something to ‘Evil Empire’. I think they will stay out of trouble as long as they win, but if they have a losing season, watch out. –An unknown NHL agent for the Athletics
Unfortunately, the Golden Knights stopped winning last year, and an anonymous agent thinks he might bite them moving forward.
No player is safe in Vegas. Many players commented that no player is safe now. The rug can be pulled out from under you at any moment and believe me if it can happen to Marc-Andre Fleury it can happen to anyone. Some players ultimately decide to play in that environment and don’t care, but other players value being in a place where there is loyalty and stability and appreciation that goes both ways. –Alan Walsh on the Agent Provocateur podcast
Now that the Golden Knights have officially cleared themselves of all Walsh clients, he hasn’t hesitated to publicly share his feelings about the Vegas system.
There are many players who have been promised by the owners, at GMS, you are going to retire here, you are family, I love you like a child. And then a year later they get traded and it’s like, “Oh well, I didn’t want to do it, it’s a trade.” Are you sure. –Walsh on the Agent Provocateur podcast
Of course, Reilly Smith signed an extended contract with the Golden Knights this offseason, and Alec Martinez, Robin Lehner and Alex Pietrangelo have all in the past 24 months, suggesting the calamitous nature of Vegas’ winning streak is no longer in perspective. It has kept players from stopping until this point.
The question is about the future though.
Will the Golden Knights continue to attract top free agents as they have in the past? And if so, are you forced to deliver passive/inactive clauses in the process?
The new head coach has signed the longest five-year contract in VGK history, perhaps due to the team’s desire to move on from coaches at the drop of a hat. however, He will not officially accept it. When you click on the introductory press release.
It’s a topic that won’t go away anytime soon, and probably won’t GM keeps removing it for no reason in the press.
It’s hard to argue that it’s affected the Golden Knights to this point, but with powerful voices pushing the narrative, it’s hard to believe it won’t happen at some point in the near future.