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Golden Knights Tuch Dominating The Postseason Again

NHL Game Highlights | Golden Knights vs. Kings – Apr. 14, 2021

Alex Tuch has been one of the Vegas Golden Knights best players throughout the regular season. He finished tied for third in goals for the team during the regular season while averaging third-line minutes. His production rate and commitment to both sides of the puck saw him getting more opportunities higher on the depth chart when the Golden Knights suffered an injury.

Now, with the playoffs in full swing, Tuch has managed to not only continue his dominant play but expand on it. With Max Pacioretty out of the lineup, Tuch has been slotted into the first-line left wing position. So far, he has made the most of it.

Wild Golden Knights: Stories To Watch

Kirill the Thrill and the no-longer-mild

Whether they were reaching or missing the playoffs, the Wild havent always lived up to their team name at least in the sense of excitement. Instead, their defensive-minded approach understandably often branded them as the Mild.

While the Wild still usually play good-to-great defense, Kirill Kaprizovs changed their trajectory. In the past, a casual fan of the sport might see the Wild on the schedule and groan. Now, theyre more likely to flip over to see what golden opportunity Kaprizov might create on any given night.

Beyond the more practical benefits of the Calder-lock-winger, hes simply made Minnesota a lot more fun.

With that in mind, its easier to picture the Wild beating the Golden Knights even if the series is played at the sort of hectic pace the franchise historically preferred to avoid.

We find that when you play good teams like , great teams, you raise up your play a little bit and just had emotional games against them, Wild winger said, via the Athletics Michael Russo . Its always been fun . Its always been back and forth and physical and heavy. So, it suits us well.

Wild won season series vs. Golden Knights

Honestly, in most years, head-to-head series stats dont mean a ton . When people really emphasize it, there could even be some eye rolls.

How healthy is Vegas?

Scan Rotoworlds injury page and youll see that Vegas is dealing with a higher quantity and quality of injuries than Minnesota.

View From The Other Side

Vegas Golden Knights blog Knights On Ice

As good as the Golden Knights have been in their brief history, the Canadiens havent been intimidated. The teams have played six times, and Montreal has a 5-1 record, averaging more than four goals per game. Three of those wins were decided in overtime, but the Habs are proving to be much more adept in that situation following their 0-9 start in the regular season, thanks in no small part to the arrival of the clutch Cole Caufield. The rookie was last seen stalking a puck, then sending it to Tyler Toffoli to secure his teams berth in the Stanley Cup Semifinal.

There is a lot of focus on the storyline of Max Pacioretty versus Nick Suzuki in this series, but neither team is constructed in a way that the performance of one skater will determine the series. Despite making it to the final four, neither team has a player among the top 10 playoff scorers, but both have at least 19 players with a point. They rely on a four-line rotation for the full 60 minutes, and play a tight defensive game when opponents come knocking. Its going to be a hard-fought series, forced to the boards for many of the possessions, with the team able to take advantage of the opportunities the one to advance when its all said on done. With that style of play in store, the series should be far from as lopsided as many expect.

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What About The Goaltending Decision

Looking at the goaltending situation in Vegas is intriguing. What NHL team wouldnt want and Robin Lehner as their guys protecting the net? Yet, with a combined cap hit of $12 million between the two of them, somethings got to give. Do you give up on Fleury who just took home his first Vezina Trophy, or hope that Lehner earns his $5 million AAV deal through the 2024-25 season? While the pair was quite effective, again that pesky salary cap issue is biting at the Vegas franchises core. There have been rumours that if Fleury leaves hed love to go back to the Pittsburgh Penguins. Now wouldnt that be special?

Lehner seems solid and yet losing Fleury would be a bummer. He had a classic season with a 26-10 record including a sparkling 1.98 goals-against-average and a .928 save percentage. That included six shutouts and clutch wins when the teams needed them. Mark Madden of thinks that the Penguins should go after Fleury whose contract expires after next season. He thinks Fleury may be open to going back to Pittsburgh and the Pens should only need to give up a third-round pick for him. Of course, for that to happen the Golden Knights will need to retain up to half of Fleurys contract. That may not happen. Without Fleury, what would the Vegas Golden Knights future look like?

Golden Knights’ Brayden Mcnabb: Injured In Preseason Opener

Vegas Golden Knights falter again after being handled by ...

McNabb didn’t finish Sunday’s preseason game against the Sharks, Jesse Granger of The Athletic reports.

The Golden Knights were without McNabb, Shea Theodore and Mark Stone by the end of the night. Further updates on their statuses should surface prior to the team’s next preseason tilt, Tuesday against the Avalanche. McNabb was tripped down on his final shift, so his absence is likely linked to that play.

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Golden Knights Robin Lehner: Starting Versus Kings On Thursday

Lehner will protect the road goal in Thursdays preseason game versus the Kings, John Hoven of SiriusXM NHL Network Radio reports.

Lehner is set to get into his first preseason game of the year. Its likely just a tune-up for the 30-year-old, who figures to receive a noticeable majority of the starts for the Golden Knights in 2021-22. He had a 2.29 GAA and a .913 save percentage with a 13-4-2 record across 19 games last year.

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Golden Knights Get Chance To Rest Recover Before Next Series

The Golden Knights, who eliminated the Chicago Blackhawks in five games, wont know their next opponent for several days and wont play again until Tuesday at the earliest.

The Golden Knights became the first team to advance to the NHLs conference semifinals and now have time to rest and recover from their series against the Chicago Blackhawks.

The Knights, who eliminated the Blackhawks in five games with Tuesdays 4-3 victory in Edmonton, Alberta, wont know their next opponent for several days and wont play again until next Tuesday at the earliest. That will give them time to reflect on what worked and what didnt in their first playoff series win since May 2018.

Here are three broader takeaways from series:

1. Lehner is No. 1, for now

Robin Lehner started four of the five games against the Blackhawks.

Whether fans like it or not, that makes coach Pete DeBoers goalie hierarchy pretty clear for now. Marc-Andre Fleury will still play. He might even regain the starting job if Lehner struggles.

But for now, its Lehners crease.

I thought he found a way to win us games, DeBoer said. It wasnt an easy series for either of our goaltenders, and I thought they both performed really well.

Fleury was great in Game 3. He allowed one goal and earned his 80th playoff win, tied for sixth all time with Ken Dryden.

Still, DeBoer went back to Lehner in Games 4 and 5. He trusted the trade deadline acquisition against his former team.

2. Depth is showing

3. New top pair?

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Cup Or Bust For The Captain

He, of all people, learned that the hard way against Montreal when he didnt score a single point in the semifinal series.

Being the captain comes with the glory of being the first person to touch the Stanley Cup. It also comes with the agony of having to answer why your team fell two wins shy of reaching the Stanley Cup Final.

I learned a lot about simple things in the playoffs. Regular season went pretty smoothly. Its a different animal when you get to the playoffs with pressure, Stone said. We know what to do as a team going forward and well execute that.

Stone had the best season of his career with 61 points, missing only one game. He was a finalist for the Selke Trophy for a second time and ninth in the Hart Trophy voting.

The captain had eight points through 12 playoff games, including the historic game-winning goal in Game 5 at Colorado. The last seven, though, Stone went pointless and was a minus-4 in the Montreal series. A lot of forwards went cold in that Montreal series. Stone was the biggest eye-raiser.

I think weve added a lot of good pieces up front, Stone said We dont even have out there yet and we still feel deep. Once he comes back, its going to be the best forward group Ive ever played on. Were going to have guys when other guys arent playing at the top of their game step in and score goals. Were going to have a hard group to defend on a nightly basis.

Golden Knights Laurent Brossoit: Draws Start Friday

NHL Game Highlights | Wild vs. Golden Knights, Game 5 – May 24, 2021

Brossoit will patrol the crease in Fridays preseason tilt against the Kings, Jesse Granger of The Athletic reports.

Brossoit will make another preseason appearance as he gets ready for the start for the 2021-22 campaign. The 28-year-old wont get many looks this season behind Robin Lehner barring any injury.

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Vegas Golden Knights History

The Vegas Golden Knights were created in 2016 when the NHL awarded the franchise to billionaire businessman Bill Foley, a graduate of West Point Military Academy and the Maloof Family, the founders of the Palms Casino Resort. The team opened their first NHL campaign in 2017-2018 season becoming the first major professional sports franchise to compete in Las Vegas. The Vegas Golden Knights play within the Pacific Division of the Western Conference against rivals like Calgary Flames, Edmonton Oilers, Los Angeles Kings, San Jose Sharks, Vancouver Canucks, Anaheim Ducks, and the Arizona Coyotes.

The first season for the Golden Knights was impressive. Sin City adhered to the team like glue and the Golden Knights played in the Stanley Cup Finals in their inaugural season. They were led by outstanding play from several players who had been tossed aside by other teams in the NHL and were considered a team of misfits by the league. But to no avail, the Golden Knights played spectacular hockey in their first season which has since propelled the team into one of the most successful franchises in the NHL.

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Golden Knights’ Brayden Mcnabb: Focused On Opening Night

McNabb won’t play in Friday’s preseason clash with the Kings but is expected to be ready for Opening Night against Seattle on Oct. 12, Jesse Granger of The Athletic reports.

Over the course of his nine-year NHL career, McNabb has reached the 20-point threshold just once back in 2014-15. Given his limited offensive upside, few fantasy players should be impacted even if McNabb does miss some regular-season action.

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Golden Knights’ Brayden Mcnabb: Dealing With Charley Horse

McNabb didn’t suffer any structural damage when he was injured in Sunday’s preseason matchup with the Sharks, but he is dealing with a charley horse, Jesse Granger of The Athletic reports.

The Golden Knights aren’t going to rush McNabb back before he’s fully recovered from his injury, but at this point there’s no reason to believe he’s in any danger of missing regular-season action. The 30-year-old defender picked up eight points and 98 hits while averaging 19:18 of ice time through 41 games last campaign.

Golden Knights Nolan Patrick: Signs Two

New Jersey Devils Put On A Show Against The Vegas Golden ...

Patrick signed a two-year, $2.4 million contract extension with the Golden Knights on Sunday.

Patrick was dealt to Vegas in mid-July, and his extension will keep him with the club for at least two more years. The 23-year-old returned to the ice last year after he missed the 2019-20 campaign due to health issues, and he recorded four goals and nine points across 52 games with the Flyers.

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New Line Same Results

When the Stanley Cup Playoffs began, Tuch was originally slated to stay on the third line with his usual linemates. Mattias Janmark was given the opportunity on the top unit with Mark Stone and Chandler Stephenson. However, with the lack of offense in Game 1, head coach Peter DeBoer decided to switch up the lines for the next game.

This saw Tuch be promoted to the first-line, and the results almost came instantly. In his first game playing with this line, Tuch scored twice and was credited with the game-winning goal. During Game 2, he also had more ice-time and was featured on the penalty kill and at the ending of the game when the Minnesota Wild were making their final push. He would also go on to score a highlight-reel goal in Game 4.

However, his move to the top unit is not only beneficial to himself. Both of Tuchs new linemates are finding themselves at the top of the stat sheet. Stone is currently leading the team in points with four in four games, while Stephenson is close behind with three points of his own. So far, this line has combined for 10 points in the three games they have played together. So even with their main scorer out of the lineup, the Golden Knights have found a suitable replacement moving forward.

Defence: Oilers Vs Golden Knights

The Golden Knights six defencemen will be the same group as they iced last season, with Shea Theodore and Alex Pietrangelo leading the way. Quietly doing great work on the blue line is Alec Martinez, a stud defensively, and posted 32 points, outperforming Pietrangelo.

Theodore is a dark horse in the Norris Trophy race, and if his progression continues, should play even better than he did last season when he was on a 65-point pace over an 82-game season.

The Oilers bring in 3-time Stanley Cup winner Duncan Keith, Cody Ceci, and promote Evan Bouchard to the NHL in a full-time role. They parted with Caleb Jones, Adam Larsson, and Ethan Bear.

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Keith is a clear upgrade to Jones, who can be compared as they were included in the same trade. Keith brings experience that Jones didnt possess, a key part of what the Oilers were missing from their team the past couple of seasons on the back-end. Keiths role will be reduced in Edmonton and allow him to have more favourable matchups and not play as much, while as an Oiler, Jones struggled to even stay in the lineup for a significant amount of time.

Cody Ceci isnt as physical as Adam Larsson, he moves the puck better.

Jason Gregor

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Golden Knights Open Season With 4

Max Pacioretty scored twice, and Mark Stone tallied two primary assists.

After an offseason that brought multitudes of change, the Golden Knights finally kicked off the 2021-2022 regular season against the Seattle Kraken. This, as we all know, was the first game in franchise history for the leagues newest club, but it was Vegas that came away with a 4-3 win.

Leading up to the game, there was uncertainty in both lineups, as the Kraken were rumored to be missing multiple players due to the leagues COVID-19 protocols, but all were iced after all.

The Knights were without Mattias Janmark due to COVID-19, so it only took one game for Vegas to revert to using 11 forwards and seven defensemen.

Dylan Coghlan skated as a forward on the fourth line and Pavel Dorofeyev, Vegas 2019 third-round pick, made his NHL debut in the season opener. It was the Golden Knights debut for Evgenii Dadonov and Nolan Patrick the two skated with Peyton Krebs.

Less than 30 seconds into the contest, Seattles Jordan Eberle rang the pipe, and the Kraken got a very early power play opportunity as Alex Pietrangelo was whistled for tripping. The Golden Knights killed the penalty but not without a breakaway opportunity from William Karlsson.

Max Pacioretty got the Knights on the board moments after the kill. His first of the season came on a wrist shot from Philipp Grubauers right that went over the glove of last years Vezina Trophy finalist.

Next up for Vegas is a Thursday matchup in Los Angeles.

Golden Knights Brett Howden: Attends Afternoon Session

NHL Game Highlights | Golden Knights vs. Wild, Game 3 May 20, 2021

Howden skated at the Golden Knights afternoon session of Thursdays practice, David Schoen of the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports.

Howden was traded from the Rangers to the Golden Knights in July after posting just seven points in 42 games last season. The 23-year-old will likely compete for a bottom-six role in training camp, and his ability to play either center or wing should help his cause for making the Opening Night roster.

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Golden Knights’ Shea Theodore: Deemed Day

Theodore is considered day-to-day with his undisclosed injury, Jesse Granger of The Athletic reports.

Theodore exited Sunday’s preseason game versus San Jose with an undisclosed issue. He won’t play in Tuesday night’s preseason contest against Colorado, but his day-to-day tag suggests he should be back on the ice sooner rather than later. The 26-year-old blueliner racked up eight goals and 42 points in just 53 games last campaign and should be able to produce double-digit goals and 50-plus points over the course of a full 82-game season in 2021-22.

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