3 reasons why Anthony Mantha not returning makes sense

It appears Anthony Mantha isn't returning to the Vegas Golden Knights next season. Here's why that makes sense.
Vegas Golden Knights v Dallas Stars - Game One
Vegas Golden Knights v Dallas Stars - Game One / Sam Hodde/GettyImages
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When an opportunity to win the Stanley Cup presents itself, most teams will jump at it and do whatever it takes. Most teams will risk everything for that chance to hoist Lord Stanley, whether it's signing big-name free agents or trading for reputable stars. The Vegas Golden Knights tried their hand with Anthony Mantha at the trade deadline, hoping to bolster their offense.

That was especially true for a power play that lagged behind all these years. The Golden Knights have an all-time percentage of 19.6%, which would rank near the bottom of nearly every season stats-wise. With the unit's best production coming in 2019-20 (22%), why not take a crack at a proven player with a good offensive track record?

After all, Mantha showed his worth with the Detroit Red Wings in six seasons, scoring 95 goals and 99 assists during his tenure. With 27 power play goals to his name during his Red Wings tenure, the former first-round pick would be good enough to help Vegas and eventually return, right?

Sadly, that isn't the case. A report came out on Thursday stating that the right winger was one of three Vegas Golden Knights who wouldn't return to the team. Granted, he was also an unrestricted free agent for this upcoming offseason. So there was a good chance he'd be gone and test the waters before anything else.

Still, there must be some good explanation pertaining to why the former Detroit Red Wing won't be returning. Was it something he did (or didn't do)? Were the conditions for the winger returning not right? Or did he say something wrong? Here are three reasons why Anthony Mantha not returning to Vegas makes sense.

Anthony Mantha wasn't impressive enough

Anthony Mantha's main calling card was his offensive production. The winger could score goals with an excellent shot and had good size, speed, and puck-handling skills. Therefore, he could fit in flawlessly with the Vegas Golden Knights. However, his Vegas tenure got off to a rocky start.

Upon arriving with the team on March 7, his first game consisted of two minor penalties and no shots against the Vancouver Canucks. For March with Vegas, he only had one goal. Granted, he tacked on five assists during that month, which is decent. It also led him to a good April, where he had two goals and two assists in seven games.

However, Mantha did nothing against the Dallas Stars, with no goals or assists to account for. In fact, he didn't appear after game three, with the winger being healthy-scratched. Inconsistency has been a plague for the former first-round pick during his career, with the player not doing enough to prove he's worthy of returning.