Grading the Vegas Golden Knights first-round pick

The Vegas Golden Knights made their first-round selection in the 2024 NHL Draft! Who did they go with?
All-American Game
All-American Game / Michael Miller/ISI Photos/GettyImages

The Vegas Golden Knights have their pick set in the 2024 NHL Draft! The hosts had the 19th overall pick in this year's draft, where they've had many options. They could've gone with a trusty big forward who has a penchant for scoring. They could've also gone the defense route, with the unit averaging 30.1 years of age.

Picks like David Edstrom have walked onto the stage, greeted by NHL commissioner Gary Bettman as they shake hands with hockey's biggest boss. It's a time-honored tradition that has transcended the sport, going into other avenues such as American football and basketball. The Golden Knights have this honor with the 19th overall pick, where their next superstar will walk the stage.

But will they eventually be traded? Vegas has also had a tradition of trading away their first-round draft picks to other teams. The goal? Getting quality talent to the franchise, with names such as Jack Eichel and Tomas Hertl making their way. Kelly McCrimmon hasn't shied away from this practice, either. Six of the last seven first-round picks were eventually traded to another team.

That included Edstrom, who was part of the Tomas Hertl deal with a 2025 first-round pick. The purpose was to bolster the power play and overall offense, adding a big body in front of the net. The team expects him to have a bigger role once he plays a full season. Who knows? He might play with the latest pick for the Vegas Golden Knights.

So who's this mysterious pick at the 19th spot? Who's heading to Sin City to play with one of the newest teams in the NHL? Here's the newest member of the Golden Knights, ready to come in on day one.

With the 19th pick in the NHL Draft, the Vegas Golden Knights select...

In what wasn't a surprising pick if you've seen numerous mock drafts, the Vegas Golden Knights have selected Trevor Connelly with the 19th overall pick. The Tri-City Storm prospect has developed a reputation as an incredible offensive mind, making plays and leaving defenders on their butts.

He scored 31 goals and 47 assists in 52 games this season. Of course, he was at his most potent with the San Diego Saints in 2019-20, where he scored 137 points. With 87 goals, he dominated the 14U AA league and made himself into a bona fide prospect.

Grading the Trevor Connelly pick

While Trevor Connelly has developed a reputation for being an excellent offensive piece, there are also some off-ice issues. He posted a swastika made of building blocks on his Snapchat story in March 2022, sparking outrage among fans. There were also alleged racial slurs in 2021 during a hockey game which he denied.

That was a major part of why Connelly's stock dropped in the latter half of the first round. Most NHL teams aren't willing to take a risk on someone with a controversial past. Therefore, he fell in the NHL Draft, watching his stock go as well. This is especially true in today's job market, where saying one bad thing can get you exiled from your job.

Second chances turn mortal people into unstoppable beings if they learn from past transgressions. This is the biggest opportunity of Trevor Connelly's life. This is where he can prove he's changed, learning from his past mistakes to grow. If that's the case, it'll be another solid move by general manager Kelly McCrimmon and the Vegas Golden Knights.

B. Vegas Golden Knights 19th overall pick. . Trevor Connelly. Vegas Golden Knights 19th overall pick