The Vegas Golden Knights have taken yet another step towards hockey relevance with Tuesday's announcement of a minor league affiliate.
Golden Knights General Manager George McPhee announced the club has entered into a multi-year agreement with the Chicago Wolves of the American Hockey League. The deal allows the Golden Knights to transfer players to and from the Wolves throughout the 2017-2018 season.
“American Hockey League affiliates play a significant role in the success of all NHL clubs and are we are proud to have the Chicago Wolves as our first in team history,” said McPhee in a statement. “I would like to thank Don Levin, Wendell Young and the rest of the Wolves organization for their commitment to the game and helping young hockey players grow to reach their full potential as professionals. Chicago is without question one of the strongest, most passionate hockey communities in North America. This is a relationship that we truly believe will be mutually beneficial."
The Wolves owner Don Levin is also excited to be a part of the NHL's newest franchise.
“If you look at George McPhee’s history, he has always been a general manager who believes that winning is an important part of developing players,” said Levin in a statement. “Professional playoffs are different than the regular season and he understands that and he wants his players to be ready to win.”
More than 88 percent of the NHL's current roster are graduates of the AHL and each team has their own affiliate. The Vegas Golden Knights now join their ranks and are just a few months away from the first professional sports season in Las Vegas history.
The Wolves had been affiliated with the St. Louis Blues.