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VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS 3 COLORADO AVALANCHE 0 (11-4-1 23 PTS)

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Recap: The 1st period in Denver, CO was tight and defensive. Marc-Andre Fleury made some timely saves, and the Golden Knights offense created ten quality shots on net. However, the scoring wouldn’t break out until the 2nd period. 

Alex Tuch continued his hot streak scoring two 2nd period goals. Tuch’s sixth and seventh of the season gave Vegas a 2-0 lead. Jonathan Marchessault added to the lead with his sixth of the year midway through the middle frame. Fleury was flawless and preserved a 3-0 lead heading into the second intermission.

Fleury was outstanding down the stretch, frustrating the Avalanche forwards. Colorado had multiple high-danger chances but the 36-year-old made several acrobatic saves keeping the puck out of his net. Fleury was perfect through sixty minutes and secured his third shutout of the season. 

With the 3-0 win, the Golden Knights improve their record to 11-4-1. Vegas has a couple of days off and then get back to work on Thursday night in San Jose. The game against the Sharks is scheduled for 730P PT. (Recap by Jason)

Analysis: Pete DeBoer knew the Golden Knights needed more offensively. So, he dropped the lines in a blender and boy did it make a difference. The Golden Knights controlled the puck much more than they have in the previous three games and were finally able to break the dam and start scoring. The Avs weren’t impotent though as they created plenty of chances but Marc-Andre Fleury put in his best performance of the season. (Analysis by Ken)


Upcoming stories from the Vegas Golden Knights vs Colorado Avalanche at Ball Arena

  • Consistent Fleury = Amazing Fleury

Ken’s Three VGK Stars
*** William Karlsson
** Alex Tuch
* Marc-Andre Fleury

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29 Comments

  1. jason mason

    Anyone thinking Fleury isn’t the best player on this team isn’t paying attention. He’s earning his money and Lehner’s money.

  2. knights fan in minny

    top notch effort from the squad and the flawless flower i thought we lost tuch when his skate went in to the boards had that happen to me many times back in the day we are still shaking are heads here in minny when we let alex go

  3. DOC (Go Knights Go)

    Like I said: KNIGHTS WIN !!!!

    The boys beat those big bad men of Colorado.

    Flurey simply amazing.

    You can quote all the stats you want, but there’s none that measure heart and desire. The boys needed it tonight and went out and got it. We didn’t lose a single point in the standings to the Avs.

  4. vgk21

    Fleury was great again, Tuch was a beast, and the Knights are back in 1st place.

    The line changes and d pair changes shook the team out of their complacency and lethargy. The first 2 periods the team was hustling far more noticeably than in a couple weeks. the Avs made a push in the 3rd, but Fleury was not to be denied tonight.

  5. Frank

    This is the game that the Knights needed to have to send a message to the Avs. Four games, two wins a piece, two Fleury shutouts. Yes, COL is skilled and fast. Yes, Fleury was lights out in the series. However, if VGK plays up to their potential, it’s really evenly matched. Super excited to see how the season plays out. Still alot of hockey left to go. Go knights go!

  6. Great prediction Julie – are you sure your not a fortune teller? Great effort and outstanding win. Fluery shows again why he is the number one keeper of the net. And to think mgt did everything possible to get rid of him they should be ashamed,

    • Julie

      It was just a gut feeling when I got up yesterday. 🙂 Several of us never gave up on Fleury (you, Daryl and a few others). Some did and came back to the fold (ahem, SinBin). Fleury said when all the garbage was going on that he was going to focus on getting better. He had a slump. He fixed it. Maybe that’s the difference between younger people and those with more experience with a little distance from the decisions made. We can spot a good egg and stay loyal. Did you see Jason Mason’s comment about Fleury earning his money and Lehner’s too? I’m going to frame that – totally correct. We still have the original problem of getting Fleury a backup so he can rest. If Lehner can’t even travel, will they let Dansk play? He’s suited up, and young, – should they not let him play a game?

      • Jason Mason

        It’s not every season a guy’s dad dies. I’d say that had more than a little to do with MAF’s having a rough go of things. All you have to do to see how much this guy lives to play is watch his interviews. He’s got plenty left in the tank, and if Vegas wants someone to be wearing the VGK colors in the HOF they’ll have to wait a very long time if they don’t start embracing MAF. Even then, he still might wear the colors of the team that would love to have back.

        • Julie

          100% agree. I bet several of us can relate directly to losing a close loved one. I know it takes time to come around after something like that. For awhile, it’s going through the motions. And Fleury was fairly young at 35 to go through it. But he never made any excuses for any decrease in performance. And I hope VGK mgmt learned a lesson here with Fleury, but honestly I cannot blame Fleury if he wants to go back to Pittsburgh. I doubt VGK will open that door anytime soon though. They put themselves in a bind with Lehner. I really hope he does come back soon. They need to find a goose to get that Lehner goose egg warmed up because 25m is a costly spoiled mess if the egg hasn’t hatched yet.

      • sb

        Fleury is playing great. Gotta give a lot of credit to Lehner though. Prior to Lehner coming in, Fleury’s game was sub-par for a long stretch. Having Lehner on the Team, giving him considerable competition, is making Fleury a better player. To get the best results, you gotta have competition ……. players competiting to take away your job. That’s why I gotta say, the $5 mil paid to Lehner is well worth it to get an All-Star, .930 SA performance from Fleury.

        • Daryl

          I won’t say you are wrong but I disagree. I don’t think it has anything to do with Lehner. I think it’s mostly getting over or at least being able to handle/control issues in his (MAF) personal life and not being overworked on the ice. I think VGK could accomplish the latter just by having a decent backup. That’s not a knock on Lehner or really even having to do with him.

          What I’m more worried about now is the immediate future of our goalie situation. Is VGK going to give MAF any breaks or is he going to play until Lehner comes back. IMO MAF is the better goalie and what I don’t want to happen is for MAF to get burned out, have a couple bad games, then get replaced by a healthy Lehner. Thus moving MAF back to the backup role

          • Daryl – the probability of Lehner being healthy is remote whethered injuried or not. Someone mentioned back and if that’s the case the odds drop even further. Vegas mgt screwed themselves and should have known better under the circumstances to give him a five yr deal. To think that the walrus’s presence is a Fluery motivator is just nuts. I realize that wasn’t your comment but to post it suggests whoever did the post has little understanding of a professional like Fluery. He struggled loosing his dad and rightfully so but being the pro he is responded accordingly. The Knights would be in deep s— without him on and off the ice. He truly is the face of the Knights as, is, and always will be.

        • Julie

          I don’t doubt that Fleury was spurred into doing better but I have to consider the simple aspect of how it looked publicly. PDB and mgmt made a decision once they acquired Lehner to treat Fleury poorly. They didn’t want to leave with the guy who brought them to the dance so to speak. Publicly, that had to be a blow to Fleury and well-drawn tweeted pictures of a sword in his back were spot on. They lost their faith in Fleury because they are not leaders in those roles and didn’t know how to help him. So they treated him poorly. I think Fleury got irritated and rather than take a cop out or whine, he stepped up and showed them how wrong they were. SinBin is guilty of this as well with having so little faith as to have a child draw a picture of Fleury crying for being benched during the playoffs and throwing all of their internet-savvy against him back then. Now it’s a different tune.

          But also, I just read today a tweet from Jesse Granger that Foley told Fleury and his wife in an elevator ride in T Mobile arena that Fleury would retire as a Knight and he felt he made a commitment to Fleury at that time. Don’t know when that happened. If Fleury leaves or stays, now it’s on his terms.

  7. Tim

    The best all around game of the year. Flower was great the young D-Men played well overall a fine team effort.

  8. Jake

    Tuch on the first line. I like.

    Great game for Fleury. Nice to see a rebound year after struggling and losing his father.

    Watershed game for a successful season.

  9. Daryl

    If Lehner isn’t back is VGK going to give MAF any rest? They made such a big deal having two starters and keeping their goalies fresh but since Lehner had been out MAF has played every game. What I don’t want to happen is for MAF to get worn out like in the past. VGK may not be good enough to beat COL with their back up goalie, but they should be good enough to beat the Sharks with him

  10. THE hockey GOD

    The Golden Knights can have fans back at T-Mobile Arena next week.

    The team’s plan to reopen the arena to spectators for March 1 was approved by the Nevada Department of Business and Industry today, a department spokeswoman confirmed. The Golden Knights can hold up to 15% capacity, or about 2,600 fans.

    A Golden Knights spokesman said details about ticket sales will be released later this week.

    Kudos to Coach for coming up with a game plan and change in strategy, earned your pay . Fred Shero (Flyers coach who beat the faster more skilled Redcoms) would be proud. Don Cherry not so much (coached Bobby Orr).

  11. Pistol Pete

    Ken, in your post game comments (good content per usual), I agree with your strategy to experiment with the AHL roster vs. buying. In particular I see Dugan is now listed at 6’2” 209 and I think in your last podcast it was mentioned he has a mean streak. Potential 4th line material.

    • Pistol Pete

      Jack Dugan 6 career AHL games: 4 pts +2.

      Have to love when these AHL players get a shot they are inclined work their butts off to make the most of the opportunity.

      • Pistol Pete

        Dugan turns 23 early next month. With his size and play making ability it would not surprise if he’s the #1 NHL- ready Henderson forward given the need to improve the 4th line. He can definitely use more AHL experience but what would be the harm in bringing him up ASAP.

  12. sb

    Better performance last night. W/o Fluery and Tuch ……… maybe another story. Right now, Colorado is a step ahead of VGK. Gotta fix that one big problem without creating another big hole somewhere else in the line up. Must have that Number 1, highly skilled center for Stone and Pac. A playmaker, puck handling, great passer to set these guys up. This is clear just watching the PP which looks like a Chinese Fire Drill (I know, not PC). Disorganized to say the least. No quarterback orchestrating the play. To win the Cup, the PP must score at a rate of 25% to 30% IN THE PLAYOFFS, not just regular season. Why did VGK lose to Dallas? The PP. The PP must be potent and add one goal every single game (82 per season avg), especially the PP. Is this the PP Vegas has today? No. And this is the Number 1 problem with this team. No correction. No Cup.

    • Pistol Pete

      sb I see your point yet in that 4 game series Avs were 0-9 in PP. Fleury likely a factor but still.

  13. On Fleury do not forget:. A lot has been made as to why Fleury had a bad streak last year, and it’s mostly attributed to losing his dad.

    Don’t forget the team was playing horribly. The defense was so bad bad – sloppy, turnovers regularly in their own zone, letting crossing passing lanes open regularly to guys hanging out in the slot ready to bang it in. The goalie has to have the d in front of him to have a chance. In fact you may remember the team was playing so loosely that it got the head coach fired! This proves the team was playing way below expectations. Fleury’s performance was a function of this. I don’t recall him giving up many soft goals, even in that stretch, it was more a function of him getting hung out to dry by poor play in front of him.

    Then coach Deboer comes in and I’m sure you would all agree the team turned around quickly. The play tightened up dramatically, the d included. All of a sudden Lehner played well and guess what, Fleury’s slump was over as he looked great again too. Management fell in love with Lehner but he was really the beneficiary of the much improved play in front of him. With Fleury they were remembering the sloppiness of how the team played under the old coach that got himself fired. But even when Fleury was having bad results, due to bad play in front of him, I don’t remember him giving up so many soft goals like we have seen from Lehner. Even in the playoffs it seemed like Lehner needs to let in an early soft goal as a warmup. We seem to be spotting the other team a goal until he got going… A trend that unfortunately has continued and gotten worse.

    You can beat Fleury, but you are definitely gonna have to earn it 99% of the time. And he sure robs the other team of a lot of goals we all know would go in against Lehner.

    Management owes Fleury a huge apology. He is the ultimate player any organization wishes they had – a top performer, a leader, and kind human being… A role model.

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