The Vegas Golden Knights have acquired centre Ivan Barbashev from the St. Louis Blues in exchange for prospect Zach Dean.
A pending unrestricted free agent, the 27-year-old Barbashev has 10 goals and 19 assists for 29 points in 59 games this season. A second-round draft pick by the Blues in 2014, Barbashev has 78 goals and 100 assists for 178 points in 410 career games.
After scoring a career-high 26 goals on 23.4 per cent shooting last season, Barbashev is on pace for 15 goals and shooting 11.6 per cent. He is generating scoring chances at roughly the same rate — around two per 20 minutes — so there is some bad luck involved there, according to Sportsnet analyst Adam Vingan.
“The St. Louis Blues forward plays an energy game and has the ability to contribute more than secondary offence,” wrote former NHL scout Jason Bukala, a Sportsnet analyst. “He has the skill set to be used in all situations, and he can play the wing and the middle. Barbashev is the kind of player who can open up ice for his linemates with his tenacity. He scored 26 goals and 34 assists last season, which was a career high. I’m not sure he’s a 60-plus point player, but he is better than (the totals) he’s posted this year.”
Barbashev is in the final year of a two-year deal with an annual cap hit of $2.25 million.
Dean was selected with the 30th overall pick in the 2021 NHL Draft. The 20-year-old has scored 24 goals and 49 points with the Gatineau Olympiques in the QMJHL and had three points in seven games for Canada at the 2023 world juniors.