The Knights got Stoned

The Vegas Golden Knights have made another trade just before the deadline to take another run at the Stanley Cup in their second season. The Knights acquired high-scoring winger Mark Stone from the Ottawa Senators on Monday for defense prospect Erik Brannstrom, forward Oscar Lindberg and the Dallas Stars’ 2020 second-round pick. Vegas also received minor league forward Tobias Lindberg in the trade.

Stone is a top-line talent the Golden Knights hope can help them make another deep playoff run as they did last year in getting to the Cup Final. “He plays a complete game, plays every situation, and he’s going to really help our hockey club,” coach Gerard Gallant said. “He was the top guy on the board and we went out and got him, so it shows our players what we want to do and get things on track here and get going again.”

Losing 10 of their past 13 games has hurt the Golden Knights in a top-heavy Pacific Division, but Stone should provide an immediate boost. The 26-year-old has 28 goals and 34 assists for 62 points in 59 games this season; two points shy of his career high.

Stone is in the midst of his fifth consecutive 20-goal and 50-point season. And he said on Canadian television he agreed to but hadn’t yet signed a long-term contract extension, which makes the trade all the more valuable for the Golden Knights.

“He’s been great for a lot of years now, it feels like,” Vegas center William Karlsson said. “Huge addition for our roster. The guy can pass, the guy can score, so he’s kind of the full package.”

After trading a first-, a second- and a third-round pick at the 2018 deadline for winger Tomas Tatar, Golden Knights general manager George McPhee again anted up for a playoff push. Owner Bill Foley wanted his franchise to win a title within the first five years, and this is another move to help that effort in the short and long term.

All it cost Vegas off its NHL roster is Oscar Lindberg, a 27-year-old who has 12 points in 35 games this season. The team took him from the New York Rangers in the expansion draft, drafted Brannstrom in 2017 with the pick it received from the Islanders to take Mikhail Grabovski’s contract off their hands and got the second-rounder from Dallas for Marc Methot, whom they selected from the Senators in the expansion draft.

Go Knights Go!

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