The Vegas Golden Knights may consider trading restricted free-agent forward Nikita Gusev with the two sides separated by as much as $2 million in ongoing contract negotiations, according to The Athletic's Jesse Granger.
"We think (Gusev) is a really good player," Golden Knights president of hockey operations George McPhee said. "We'd like to work something out here, but if that doesn't work out we'll look at all options."
Gusev, 26, has yet to make his NHL debut but is widely considered to be one of the best players outside of North America. He won MVP of the KHL last season by posting 82 points in 62 games for SKA St. Petersburg and also led the Olympic Athletes of Russia in scoring en route to a gold medal in the 2018 Olympics.
The Golden Knights are currently projected at a cap hit of $84.1 million against the league's limit of $81.5 million, according to Cap Friendly. Vegas has already been active in trying to shed salary this offseason, as it shipped out forward Erik Haula and blue-liner Colin Miller in separate trades.