Well that’s one way to begin a Tuesday!
The Chicago Blackhawks have acquired Marc-Andre Fleury from the Vegas Golden Knights for minor-leaguer Mikael Hakkarainen. The Golden Knights will not be retaining salary on Fleury’s deal, which has one year remaining at $7M AAV.
This is pending a trade call.
Vegas will not retain any of Marc-Andre Fleury's salary ($7 million, through this season). Only minor leaguer Mikkael Mikael Hakkarainen is going to VGK.
Clears the path for Robin Lehner to be starter in Vegas. 🌸is the No. 1 in Chicago. https://t.co/4g63eh143R
— Emily Kaplan (@emilymkaplan) July 27, 2021
Fleury, who turns 37-years-old in November, won his first-ever Vezina Trophy as the NHL’s Best Goaltender last year, posting a 26-10-0 record with a .928 save-percentage and a 1.98 GAA. He helped Vegas reach the third round of Stanley Cup Playoffs this season, before splitting time with Robin Lehner in the back-end of Vegas’ run.
This move will require a lot of salary cap movement for the Blackhawks, since they are adding Fleury’s full $7M cap hit for the 2021-22 season. It is likely that Nikita Zadorov and/or Calvin de Haan are targets to be moved from the team, as well as having to potentially move Brent Seabrook and/or Andrew Shaw’s contract from Chicago’s books.
This is unfortunate, but ’tis the era:
A source close to Marc-Andre Fleury says that the trade is done, and that the Vezina Trophy winner found out through Twitter. #VegasBorn
— Jesse Granger (@JesseGranger_) July 27, 2021
And there is a potential wrench, here:
One thing to watch here: there were rumblings Marc-Andre Fleury might choose to retire if traded from Vegas — for family reasons. Not certain how it will all play out.
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) July 27, 2021
We will have to keep an eye on what actually happens with Fleury here, if Friedman’s report is true. For the time being, the Blackhawks add Fleury as their sure-fire No. 1 goalie for next season. Fluery has a career .913 save-percentage, 67 career shutouts, and has been part of three Stanley Cup Championship teams with the Pittsburgh Penguins.
More thoughts momentarily.