It’s always interesting to get a behind the scenes look at an NHL playoff series, especially from this year’s playoff bubble. Although the Golden Knights last played 60 days ago, this week we got some visual details from their series with the Dallas Stars.
The Stars released an “all-access journey” through their 2020 postseason run, and spent time focusing on the Western Conference Finals (the entire show is embedded below). In “We’re Not Going Home,” Dallas sounded extremely confident heading into their seven-game series with Vegas. The Stars were vocal about the Golden Knights’ easy path to the Conference Final.
They haven’t played a fucking team like us boys. Their first two rounds, it was pretty fucking easy. Send a fucking message early. They played two light teams, they’re in for a rude awakening.-Jamie Benn, Stars captain in “We’re Not Going Home”
Of course, Dallas’ Captain was confident at the time after his team beat Calgary in six, and Colorado in seven. It wasn’t just the players either, Dallas’ coaches felt comfortable with the matchup after watching and studying Vegas’ previous series.
Dallas assistant coach, and former LA Kings head coach, John Stevens questioned if Vegas had been pushed enough by Chicago or Vancouver. Stevens believed if the Stars played physical, and their rugged brand of hockey they would advance to the Stanley Cup Finals.
The thing Vancouver didn’t do is the pursuit and physicality that we can provide and they cannot. Trust us when we tell ya, you play on top of them and embrace the physical game it will make a big difference in this series. -Stevens in “We’re Not Going Home”
After the teams split Game’s 1 and 2, Dallas’ coach Rick Bowness wasn’t pleased. In Game 2, the Golden Knights won by scoring all three of their goals in the second period, whereas the Stars committed three of their six penalties in that same period. Dallas was incredibly undisciplined in Game 2 and their coach let them know.
Enough of these fucking penalties. Enough of them. They take two, we take six. Don’t give them games like we did last night. Discipline wins. We want you to play with emotion, we want you to play with passion… we got to be able to control it. -Bowness in “We’re Not Going Home”
The day following the Golden Knights 3-0 victory in Game 2, the Stars reset, played some golf, and prepared mentally.
I understand the strain, the stress we’re all in and every game won’t be perfect. The reality of it is last night we were nowhere emotionally where we needed to be. -Bowness in “We’re Not Going Home”
As the series went along, the camera captured the Stars grow more confident, and large amounts of frustration from the Golden Knights bench. When Alexander Radulov sniped an overtime winner past Robin Lehner in Game 3 the series shifted significantly. It’s obvious from watching the behind the scenes footage.
After winning Games 3 and 4, Dallas was in control of the series. The Stars held a lead previously against Colorado but stumbled and let the Avalanche force a Game 7. Dallas didn’t extend Vegas the same courtesy.
We went through this with Colorado, we don’t want to let these guys back in the series. We’re right there. It’s right there for us. I know we’re tired and I know we’re banged up but so are they.-Bowness in “We’re Not Going Home”
Bowness’ messages were loud and clearly heard by his club. After the Game 5 overtime clincher, the Stars cracked celebration beers and the Golden Knights sadly packed up and left the bubble. Which meant Bowness had one more expletive to drop.
I love your competitiveness. I love your fucking team spirit!-Bowness
It’s an entertaining, well-produced behind the scenes program that I’d recommend to Golden Knights fans. Sure, it didn’t work out for your club but it’s interesting to watch the reactions as the conference final progressed.
Also, for those who enjoy blue language and f-bombs like I do, you’ll get plenty and mostly from Bowness. My only wish was that the Golden Knights produced a behind the scenes special, even if it was too painful to watch.