The Golden Knights in return get two draft picks — a third-rounder in 2020 and a second-round selection in 2021.
“We did our best to accommodate Nikita and his salary request but were unable to do so,” Golden Knights general manager George McPhee said. “He is a good person, a good player and we wish him well in New Jersey.”
Vegas signed Gusev to a one-year, entry-level deal in April after his MVP season in the KHL, in which he had a league-best 82 points (17 goals, 65 assists).
The Golden Knights acquired Gusev’s rights from the Tampa Bay Lightning in the expansion draft.
Gusev, 27, has previously shined on the international stage as he was named the top forward of the 2018 Olympics after tallying 12 points in six games en route to a gold medal.
The right-shot forward will wear No. 97.