Heading into his age-36 season, Vrbata's one-year deal with the Coyotes is up and he currently doesn't have a contract in place heading into 2017-18. As such, the Golden Knights may be inclined to take advantage of three days of excluive negotiating rights and sign him as one of their expansion selections. Vrbata bounced back from a poor campaign in Vancouver with 20 goals, 55 points and a healthy 233 shots on net last year in the desert.
Vrbata scored two goals -- one on the power play -- in Thursday's 4-3 win over the Canucks.
Vrbata returned from a one-game absence with a pair of second-period goals, including the game-winning power-play tally. The veteran Czech winger had failed to light the lamp in his previous six appearances, but he still reached the 20-goal mark for the sixth time in his career with this performance. Arizona's leading scorer has quietly had an impressive campaign for a 35-year-old despite subpar play from his teammates.
Vrbata (lower body) will be back in action for Thursday's home game against the Cancuks, Craig Morgan of Arizona Sports reports.
Veteran Shane Doan (lower body) will also return. With both skaters back in tow, that figures to give the 'Yotes a huge boost on the right wing. Vrbata should be highly motivated against his former team in this next contest. By all accounts, he's been rejuvenated away from Vancouver, fashioning a team-high 53 points after putting up a mere 27 with that club last season.
Vrbata will not play Tuesday night against the Stars due to a lower-body injury.
The Czech winger leads the Coyotes with 53 points (18 goals, 35 assists) through 79 games, making this a significant absence for the team and fantasy owners alike. It's possible that Boston University standout Clayton Keller returns to the lineup with Vrbata out.
Vrbata was scoreless with a minus-1 rating, two shots on goal and two blocked shots in Saturday's 3-0 loss against the Blues.
Vrbata was playing in his 1,000th career NHL game and he was honored with a pregame ceremony. The 35-year-old Czech winger might have been scoreless Saturday, but he has proven he has plenty left in the tank this season. Vrbata has 17 goals and 51 points to make him an attractive roster option in most fantasy pools, especially those not using the plus-minus category.