The Golden Knights have placed forward James Neal on the injured-non roster list. pic.twitter.com/79CNoTrFrS
— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) October 3, 2017
Vegas claimed the high-scoring winger from the Nashville Predators during the NHL expansion draft. Neal spent three years in Nashville. Some were surprised when he was not protected. His scoring ability and contract status made him a good option for Vegas. His six-year, $30 million contract expires next summer. James Neal (30) is one of just six active NHL players to score at least 20 goals in each of his first nine seasons. He is expected to be one of the Golden Knights scoring leader this season, and to play on the first line and on the first power-play unit, once healthy.
Injury Woes Continue
Neal broke his right hand during the Western Conference finals in May against the Anaheim Ducks. He continued to play throughout the Predators unlikely Stanley Cup run last year. He scored six goals and added three assists during Nashville’s improbable run to the Stanley Cup final.
According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, Vegas may be without Neal for at least two more weeks. According to general manager George McPhee: “The hand is taking some more time to recover than anticipated.”
Sportsnet is reporting his $5-million salary will still count towards Vegas’ cap, though he may not practice with the team.
Vegas baby, Vegas
LWOH’s own Gabriel Foley offered an in-depth look at the NHL’s newest team. Gerard Gallant became the first Golden Knights coach, being hired in April. They also signed top KHL player Vadim Shipachyov in May. Since they picked up three first rounders, including the highly sought-after prospects, Cody Glass, Nick Suzuki and Erik Brannstrom.
They take to the ice against the Dallas Stars on October 6, 2017. Unfortunately, Neal will not be available.