NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Islanders and the expansion Golden Knights reportedly have agreed to a deal in which New York would give up its first-round draft pick while steering Vegas toward selecting a designated player from their unprotected list.
Two sources confirmed the deal to Newsday. The Islanders had owned the 15th overall pick in Friday’s draft.
It’s not clear who the designated player is. The trade also includes another player going to Vegas. Newsday reported that there is a strong possibility that player is center Mikhail Grabovski because moving him would provide significant salary cap relief to the Islanders. Grabovski, who hasn’t played since suffering a concussion in March 2016, is set to count $5 million against the cap next season.
Vegas will submit its expansion draft selections to the league by 5 p.m. Eastern time Tuesday. The picks will be announced Wednesday.
According to multiple reports, Islanders general manager Garth Snow is trying to clear cap space so that he can pursue a high-end offensive player to team with John Tavares. Possibilities include Colorado’s Matt Duchene, Edmonton’s Jordan Eberle and Montreal’s Alex Galchenyuk.
After winning their first playoff series in 23 years in 2016, the Islanders had a disappointing season, going 41-29-12 and missing the postseason.