Capitals’ GM Brian MacLellan Made It Clear To Chandler Stephenson He Would Do His Best To “Find A Good Situation For Him”

According to Elliotte Friedman, when it became clear that forward Chandler Stephenson would be the odd-man out of the Washington Capitals forward corps, General Manager Brian MacLellan made it clear to him that he would do his best to make sure he went to a good situation. That appears to have happened with the Vegas Golden Knights.

In a “big business”environment that is extremely competitive, it’s refreshing to see a General Manager considering the player. That’s rarely done.

“Players talk about this stuff”. That’s how you build excellent culture within an organization, and become a desired destination for all players.

The 25-year old has three goals, which he had in 24 games with the Capitals this fall, five points, one more than he had with the Capitals, and a +5 rating in eight games with the Golden Knights since getting dealt to Vegas in exchange for a fifth-round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft.

After scoring in the Golden Knights’ 3-2 win over the Minnesota Wild at T-Mobile Arena on Tuesday, Stephenson extended his career-long point streak to four games. He has recorded two goals and four points during the streak, which followed a three-game point drought for Stephenson.

He’s also gotten more of an opportunity under head coach Gerard Gallant too, as he has centered the Golden Knights’ second line with forwards Mark Stone and Max Pacioretty, the team’s leading scorer, for the past several games.

Stephenson scored in his Golden Knights debut, a 4-3 victory over the New Jersey Devils on December 3.

Since Stephenson has joined the Golden Knights, he has been on pace for 31 goals and 51 points over a full 82-game season.

When the Capitals’ full forward lineup was ready to play for the first time all season, the club had no room under the NHL salary cap to fit Stephenson in. A trade was all but guaranteed to happen. Stephenson was held out of the Capitals’ practice at SAP Center in San Jose on December 2.

Selected by the Capitals 77th overall in 2012, Stephenson had 14 goals, 33 points, and a +2 rating in 168 career regular-season games with the Capitals. He posted two goals, seven points, and a +3 rating while playing all 24 games during the team’s run to the Stanley Cup in 2018.

By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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3 Responses to Capitals’ GM Brian MacLellan Made It Clear To Chandler Stephenson He Would Do His Best To “Find A Good Situation For Him”

  1. hockeydruid says:

    Actually they had room for Stephenson but instead traded him when they should have gotten rid of Panik who has done nothing but eat up cap space and force the Caps to trade a good serviceable player. Shame and to make it worse Vegas got a steal with only giving up a 5th round pick.

    • Anonymous says:

      This may be true, but I think point of the post is how to build positive culture that players want to play for.

  2. Clifford Keefe says:

    Granted, you can’t keep everybody and you can’t play everybody. But when I look at the string of forwards under George McPhee and our current GM that we could have kept (Filip Forsberg, Brett Connolly, Andre Burakovsky and now Chandler Stephenson)–and how well, pretty much predictably, they’ve done in new venues for teams who really wanted them and were willing to play them enough to allow them to develop, I cringe…but because of our overall depth I don’t yet Panik….

    Okay that was bad….

    Clifford
    Sta. Monica

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