After last night’s victory in Philadelphia, the Golden Knights are 6-4-0 without 40-point producing forward James Neal. At times during the 10-game intermittent stretch, Vegas has struggled to put the puck in the net. For instance, the Golden Knights have been shutout or held to one goal nine games this season, three of them have been in Neal’s absence.
Without Neal, the Golden Knights have scored 31 goals in those 10 games. Forwards Alex Tuch, Ryan Carpenter and Cody Eakin stepped up offensively for Vegas. Plus, all three Tomas’s lit the lamp, and the blue line added some help on the scoreboard as well over this span.
VGK “Bottom-6″/Defenseman Goals During Neal’s Absence
02/19: Lost 2-0 vs. Anaheim
02/21: Won 7-3 vs. Calgary
Goals by Ryan Carpenter, Alex Tuch, Luca Sbisa, Tomas Nosek, Cody Eakin
02/23: Won 6-3 vs. Vancouver
Goals by Tomas Hyka, Tomas Nosek
02/27: Lost 4-1 vs. LA
03/02: Lost 5-4 vs. Ottawa
Goals by Colin Miller, Carpenter
03/04: Won 3-2 @ New Jersey
Goals by Deryk Engelland, Tomas Tatar
03/06: Lost 4-1 @ Columbus
03/08: Won 4-0 @ Detroit
Goals by Tuch(2), Eakin(2)
03/10: Won 2-1 @ Buffalo
Goal by Engelland
03/12: Won 3-2 @ Philadelphia
Goal by Carpenter
It’s important for VGK’s reserves to produce when the starters are banged up. All Stat head coach Gerard Gallant relies on his full roster to step up when injuries pile up. And why wouldn’t he? The Golden Knights get more depth scoring than most other NHL teams.
VGK goals (through March 12th)
25 players with 1+ goals
15 players with 5+ goals
8 players with 9+ goals
6 players with 15+ goals
5 players with 20+ goals
1 player with 30+ goals
VGK points (through March 12th)
19 players with 10+ points
11 players with 20+ points
9 players with 30+ points
6 players with 40+ points
4 players with 60+ points
We know what Neal does on the ice. His presence alone creates defensive changes. It’s no surprise team offense was down. Record aside, his teammates deserve credit for scratching and clawing to six victories. Hopefully, Neal will be back in action this upcoming homestretch.
Oh, and I haven’t even mentioned the injured Reilly Smith. Luckily, the healthy skaters elevated their play and are 3-0-0 without arguably the MVP of the team.
Hopefully Neal and Smith will be back by The last homestand. That essentially will give them 7 games to Ramp back up
I’d like to see 81 get a few more past. I knows he’s been making plays and helping set up others, but id like to see more of his quick shots into the back of the net. Perron has been great so far this year, he’s exceeded my expectations for a 2nd line center by far.