As part of a long-rumored deal made with the Chicago Blackhawks, the Vegas Golden Knights have acquired forward Marcus Kruger.
Marcus Kruger has been traded to Vegas.
— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) July 2, 2017
The trade helps Chicago significantly when it comes to dealing with their salary cap issues. Kruger has a cap hit of just over $3 million per year for each of the next two seasons. While this does not solve all of the Blackhawks cap issues, it certainly helps.
Vegas Golden Knights Acquire Marcus Kruger
The winner of the deal is arguable. Chicago is losing a six-year NHL veteran. They are saving a lot of money in cap space though. Prior to this deal, many fans were worried someone like Artem Anisimov would have to be dealt away to keep Chicago within the limits.
Kruger is a bit a burden for Vegas to take on though. The 27-year old could be a solid bottom six forward. He has played 192 games in the last three seasons total, but has only managed 38 points. 17 of these points came last season, in a total of 70 games. His inconsistency does not make him worthy of a $3 million contract, which is part of the reason Chicago was so eager to dish him to Vegas. He could be a good bottom line center in Vegas, and his experience in the league will help the young players that will join the team soon.
The analytics show that Kruger is a useful bottom six forward. With a Relative Corsi-For percentage of 0.35, which was ninth on the Blackhawks roster, shows that he is an effective hockey player. Despite the point production not matching, he can bring reliable play to the bottom six. And with the salary cap not being any sort of issue for the Vegas Golden Knights, his $3 million cap hit is the least of their worries.