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Blackhawks trade forward Marcus Kruger to the Vegas Golden Knights

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CHICAGO – This was expected to happen a few weeks ago when Las Vegas’ new NHL franchise was preparing for their expansion draft.

But that came and went without Marcus Kruger going to the Golden Knights – a deal that was rumored to have already been done a few days before. Perhaps the announcement of Marian Hossa’s absence for at least the 2017-2018 season caused the Blackhawks to rethink the decision to get ride of their talented forward who does have a big hit on their salary cap.

On Sunday, however, the Blackhawks followed through with their initial plans and traded Kruger to Vegas for future considerations.

“We thank Marcus for his many contributions to our team—most notably, two Stanley Cup Championships,” said Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman in a statement released by the team. “His work ethic, reliability and strength as a two-way player made him a valuable member of the organization. We wish him the best with Vegas.”

This ends a seven-year run for Kruger in the Blackhawks organization, one in which he helped the team to a pair of Stanley Cups. He had 33 goals and 72 assists in 398 career games in Chicago and was lauded for his ability as a defensive forward on the penalty kill. Unfortunately, due to a $3.08 million dollar salary cap hit the next two years, the Blackhawks were in need to trade him to get under the money number.