Tonight, the most tumultuous season in Vegas Golden Knights history officially comes to an end.
It’s been a year in which the storyline has been dominated by injuries, but was also marred by reverted trades, salary cap manipulation, goalie controversy, and so much more “outside noise” as the organization likes to call it.
A team that was expected to compete for a Stanley Cup fell woefully short and the diagnosis of why will shape the most important offseason the franchise has ever seen.
Because of the spotlight that has followed the Golden Knights since their arrival in the NHL, pretty much everyone has an opinion on what went wrong. These opinions are wide-ranging too.
Many believe there’s simply nothing the Vegas organization could have done to avoid a season in which they lost nearly 500 games and $26 million of salary cap value due to injuries. While others completely discount the injury issues and point to intangibles surrounding the team, some of which even include mythical constructs like curses and karma.
Everyone views it slightly differently as each person has a different background that helps them frame a season that truly is unexplainable. Some lead to wacky off-the-wall over-exaggerations (admittedly, I fall in this category from time to time), while others just chalk it up to the randomness and sports.
Recently former NHL player and current analyst Bill Lindsay weighed in on how he viewed the situation surrounding the Golden Knights. As a former player of more than 700 games and color commentator for the Florida Panthers, he took a unique angle as to what has changed inside the walls of City National Arena.
There is a personal part of a family and believing that it’s a core there. And they had that, they were the Misfits early on, the underdogs and everyone was discounting them. Even though it’s a business when people do good work for you it’s a family throughout the whole organization. -Bill Lindsay, former NHL player and NHL Network analyst
Lindsay cited the firing of Gerard Gallant, the casting off of Marc-Andre Fleury, and the failed trade of Evgenii Dadonov as examples. He also tied it back to his playing days when he was part of a situation he feels is similar to the one here in Vegas.