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Consecutive Games Against Same Opponent Has Suited Golden Knights Well

In the first 68 games this season, the Golden Knights have not played the same opponent in consecutive games a single time. That’s about to change with the next four games. Tomorrow Vegas heads to Seattle to play the Kraken twice in a row before they depart for Vancouver for a home and home against the Canucks.

Normally, in the NHL this is a rarity. Over the course of the Golden Knights’ first three seasons, they played the same team in consecutive games just three times. 2017-18 had pairs of games against the Coyotes early in the season and the Kings right at the trade deadline. 2019-20 included a season-opening duo against the Sharks following the wild seven-game series the year before.

On each of those three occasions, the same team won both games. Vegas swept Arizona and San Jose and the Kings took both off Vegas. That also is considered a rarity.

The back-to-back, it’s the old college hockey thing, it’s really hard to sweep a team. -Pete DeBoer

This was a massive talking point heading into last season when COVID restrictions forced nearly the entire schedule to consist of back-to-back games against the same team.

For Vegas though, it actually ended up working out in their favor.

We did do it a lot last year and we were successful. -DeBoer

The schedule worked out fine for the Golden Knights, but we don’t ever need to see this again. (Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

The Golden Knights played a pair of games against the same team 19 different times. Vegas won both games 11 times against six of the seven other teams in the division. The Golden Knights only lost both games twice and each time it was to the same opponent, the Minnesota Wild. They even took a point in one of them too.

Vegas ripped off a 10 game winning streak last season in which the first eight were all in this exact situation. Winning pairs against Arizona, Los Angeles, Anaheim, and San Jose the Golden Knights then went on to beat the Ducks and Avs to finish the stretch.

Using this “college hockey” style schedule, the Golden Knights went on to rack up the most points of any team in the league, tied with Colorado, and they hoisted the Jennings Trophy for allowing the fewest goals against during the season.

Now, Vegas is in need of points in the worst way. With two against Seattle and two more against Vancouver, seven or eight points has to be the goal. Conventional wisdom says that’s going to be tough given the mini-series against each team, but history indicates the exact opposite.

If VGK can channel their inner 2021, they have a great chance of amassing points in bunches this week off the backs of two inferior opponents.

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34 Comments

  1. THE hockey GOD

    Bill Daly says the #NHL is drafting an agreement with the #NHLPA to create a database between the league’s Central Registry and the union for no-trade lists to be filed, in an effort to avoid a future situation that unfolded with Evgeni Dadonov last week.

    I guess this was VGK FO fault after all.

    • THE hockey GOD

      or ANA FO , for that matter

    • ashper99

      It is my understanding that McCrimmon knew about the no trade list and pressured Dadonov into accepting the deal with Anaheim. If that’s the case, McCrimmon needs to go.

      • JockEnvy

        Source?

      • JockEnvy

        Not saying I don’t believe this is true. I would just be interested to read where it came from because this would be a really bad look for McCrimmon and the FO

      • THE hockey GOD

        bull shit

        did Anaheim “know about the list” and who “pressured’ them into the deal?

        IF this was case, then we would have heard from the “agent” who filed the list (with Ottawa, by the way, not VGK) by now.

        Take your bull shit elsewhere, it won’t fly here.

    • Hi ken

      Please explain how this proves it’s Vegas fault. That’s pretty dumb to say that, this is Ottawas fault 100% because they said daddy sleighed didn’t have a NTC or it was void. The NHL APPROVED the trade. So they were under the same impression Vegas was. Sick of this stupid narrative, grow up

  2. THE hockey GOD

    Frank Seravalli posted the above, and now below post
    @frank_seravalli
    ·
    1h
    As GM Meetings wrap, Gary Bettman and Bill Daly will address media. There was discussion on LTIR exception, but the big reminder from the league to managers: This is a CBA issue that must be bargained with NHLPA.

  3. Richard

    It is even more important than this. Following these four back-to-back games are two additional games vs the Coyotes and then on more vs the Canucks. That is six games in a row vs what should be inferior division foes. If the VGK are going to make the playoffs they have to dominate these next six games.

    • Scooter

      They don’t have the ability to dominate anybody right now. Plus, Thompson is gonna get lit up in a few of these games if he remains the starter. His flaws are not hiding from anybody who sees the tape. They can’t expect to take 7 or 8 points, especially after they way they’ve played on the road vs. non-playoff teams.

  4. Tim

    My hope all along has been the Knights get the 8th spot and play Colorado for kicks and giggles.Nothing would make me happier then to knock off Colorado in the first round.Is it possible who knows they have a team and we have a collection of bodies but it would be interesting. The problem with the Knights is there like a cheap suit they fold in a heartbeat. If you haven’t figured it out yet this team was never built to win the Stanley Cup which I’ve told fellow posters all year long you need players that go balls to the wall and we only have a few of those. Eichel, Stone, Marshy, Whitecloud, Petro, McNabb, after that forget about it.

    • THE hockey GOD

      “ll year long you need players that go balls to the wall ” aka muckers.

      Someone on this forum is listening. Have another oreo cookie.

  5. ulf

    I would be careful to call Vancouver an ‘inferior opponent’. This is the kind of thinking that’s gotten Vegas into trouble .

    Vancouver is heathier, has won more games in the last 20 and Demko is capable of stealing games as we’ve seen before.

    • Blitz

      Vegas has lost to, or performed poorly against, a good portion of the bottom dwellers the last month. There are zero inferior opponents at this point, especially on the road.

  6. Blitz

    The Kraken just did a back to back in LA and went 1-1, crushing LA the second game. I fully expect a 1-1 split with VGK on this trip. Obviously hoping for 2-0 knights, but road games have been REALLY bad for a while now. Hopefully with a couple of bodies back Vegas will overcome the road game deficiency. Would be interesting to see the d core back to strength w/ Hutton as the 6th dman (over cogs who has looked better as of late).

    Guessing:

    Petra/Hutton
    Theo/McNabb
    Marty/Whitecloud

    OR

    Petra/Marty
    Theo/McNabb
    Whitecloud/Hutton

    I don’t think they have played Hutton with Whitecloud much. Might be a left/right thing, I don’t know. Hutton has looked good with Petra for several games now. Just speculating stuff and curious to see what happens with the d core if all healthy. Cap space may say a d man goes on waivers soon too, assuming they need to bring stone or patches back in by season end.

    • THE hockey GOD

      hutton needs to learn to play within the dots in his own zone
      and stop chasing the puck like
      a chicken with his head chopped off.
      squawk
      squawk
      squawk !

      • Blitz

        You have zero clue what you are talking about, but you already know this don’t ya?

        • THE hockey GOD

          @ blitz, that is the call on hutton from NHL canadian TV experts, so bring it up with them. The experts include ex players and ex coaches.

          • ulf

            which experts? Because the Canadian TV experts who covered him when he was in Vancouver said he was a dependable bottom-half defenseman.

          • THE hockey GOD

            ” when he was in Vancouver said he was a dependable bottom-half defenseman”

            yes he’s dependable except when he errs and moves out from between the dots to go after a puck along the boards or behind the net which he has no chance of getting leaving his d man partner fending for himself. He needs stop taking circuitous routes to the puck, this comes with age and experience in NHL

          • ulf

            replying to your other message.

            Hutton is 28 years old and has over 400 games in the NHL. He has “age and experience”.

            He’s not a #1 D, I don’t think anyone’s saying he is. He’s playing just fine in the bottom half (ideally bottom pair), especially for his salary.

            His work around the boards and in the D-zone is decent and he pinches at the right times, usually.

  7. Vic

    Checking various future odds today provides some interesting things. The VGK odds to win the cup are still better than teams in front of and behind them (even teams with 4 games in hand). So what does this mean? It means *IF* the VGK make it to the playoffs, they are considered by the actuaries more dangerous than several other teams. Players returning from injuries can do that. Now, can the VGK make it to the playoffs? Getting to the point of needing a miracle. Based on the way this season has gone, this will probably happen…..The VGK will play pretty well, and win most of the remaining games. The Kings or Oilers may stumble, but due to more ridiculous injuries, the VGK fall short. I know….Captain Obvious. If they do make it, we can have some fun.

    • Vic,

      I like your optimism however, the following link has them at 47.2% chance of making the playoffs and a 4.4% of making the finals with a 1.9% chance of winning it.

      https://moneypuck.com/predictions.htm

      I will be rooting for them to beat the odds but with 4 wingers out of the lineup, a starting goalie out, and a current 7 game road losing streak I’m very nervous about this teams situation. According to the link above they need to get to 96 points that’s 10-4. This team needs to show up every period every night and you can bet Seattle would love to knock them down a peg or two. Seattle at this point of the season is probably tired of hearing about VKG first season in league and how great they were I would expect Seattle’s best effort.

    • THE hockey GOD

      @ vic, it means no more than that there are a lot of dumb bat chit crazy
      betters in vegas , no more , no less.

    • Julie

      Hey, Vic – I don’t know the anticipated return times of the injured. Is it possible that most come back – or any I guess now to get through these next several games? Don’t we need these wins to get/stay in the playoff spot? I am hopeful.

      I did see on the news Lehner got hit in the shoulder during practice today. I didn’t see if he’s the goalie confirmed for tomorrow yet. But at this point, they might try bubble wrap around him if he can play.

    • Scooter

      They’re 9th at 15/1, so not sure they think VGK is as dangerous as last season. In general, you will never get true odds on VGK futures bets. The books know the market and adjust accordingly.

  8. The bottom line is that every single game now is a playoff game for the Vegas Golden Knights. Let’s root them on to victory. They’re going to have to win 11 or 12 of the remaining games and get some help in order to make it into the post season.

  9. THE hockey GOD

    why do I need flood insurance for my boat ???

  10. The Rob Show

    The way I see it the Golden Knights need to win at least the last 12 out of 14 games. Because of Dallas games in hand. And still might not make the playoffs even if that happens. Could Dallas have a total meltdown? Not of that proportion

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