Recap: The Golden Knights were going for a four-game winning streak with an out-of-conference matchup again the Devils. Pavel Dorofeyev made quick work on offense scoring his seventh of the season 6:12 into the game. New Jersey battled back and tallied two goals before the break. After 20 minutes the home team led 2-1.
The Devils scored their third unanswered goal at the 1:37 mark of the middle frame. Six minutes later Jonathan Marchessault got Vegas within one scoring his 21st goal of the season. On the following shift Marchessault evened the score at 3-3. Chandler Stephenson and Nic Roy joined the offensive party scoring Vegas’s third and fourth straight goal. The Devils scored with 0:16 left in the period to make it a 5-4 Golden Knights advantage.
Midway through the final period New Jersey evened the score 5-5 poking in a loose rebound around Vegas’ net. The game needed overtime to decide a winner. New Jersey scored late in OT winning 6-5.
The Golden Knights record drops to 27-14-6 losing to the Devils 6-5 in overtime. Vegas will get right back to work tomorrow night in Long Island. Puck drop against the Islanders is scheduled for 430 PM. (Recap by Jason)
Analysis: Got caught up in playing the style of game the Devils prefer and it ultimately cost VGK. Puck management was a problem all night but they outscored it most of the time… until the very end. (Analysis by Ken)
Upcoming stories from the Vegas Golden Knights vs. New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center.
All season long the eyes of the hockey world have been on the Eastern Conference. Based on performance and deep lineups the odds suggest an Eastern Conference team will be named the 2023 Stanley Cup champion. Through 67 games, the Golden Knights are making analysts, computer models, insiders, and pundits rethink their position.
On Saturday, Vegas casually shut out the high-powered Carolina Hurricanes to record the team’s 20th victory against the Eastern Conference. Tomorrow night in Philadelphia they can add to that total.
VGK vs the Eastern Conference (30 Games)
.700 Points Percentage
3.45 Goals Scored Per Game
2.70 Goals Allowed Per Game
Shutout CAR, 1 Goal Allowed vs TOR
Jack Eichel vs East: 26 Points (13G, 13A)
Left on the schedule from the East are the Philadelphia Flyers and the Columbus Blue Jackets. Vegas will likely be a sizable favorite in both games. In 30 eastern matchups the Golden Knights would have a total of of 44 cross-conference credits. That’s 47% of Vegas’ 88 total points. Talk about flipping the script.
The message the Golden Knights sent to the East this season has been loud and it’s been heard.
They’re a good team. They hunker down in front and we knew that coming in. That got us behind the eight ball. In the 2nd period we weren’t very good, but we didn’t give up much. Just one bad bounce and it was a breakaway. Then we were down two. We had a good 3rd. We pushed, we just couldn’t get one by them. -Rod Brind’Amour, Hurricanes coach
Not only did the Golden Knights blank the Hurricanes, they also held the Toronto Maple Leafs to one goal back in October. On top off sweeping the Canes and Leafs, Vegas did the same to the Canadiens, Capitals, Lightning, and Senators in their two-game sets.
Recap: The Golden Knights were looking for their second straight win by hosting the New Jersey Devils. Vegas jumped on the board first after Jonathan Marchessault scored an acrobatic goal for his 18th of the season. The Devils took advantage of a Brett Howden penalty and evened the score later in the period. In the closing minute of the opening period, New Jersey grabbed the lead and took a 2-1 advantage into the 1st intermission.
Marchessault added his second of the game 12:50 into the middle frame to tie the game. The game was locked at 2-2 after 40 minutes of action.
Early in the third period, Jack Eichel gave Vegas the lead by slipping the puck through Akira Schmid’s pads. New Jersey found the equalizer late in the period forcing overtime. The Devils took all nine shots in overtime, but goalie Adin Hill stood on his head frustrating New Jersey. Shea Theodore ended the game in the fourth round of shootout, giving Vegas two more points.
The Golden Knights’ record improves to 37-19-6 defeating the Devils 4-3. Vegas will conclude their homestand on Sunday as they welcome in the Montreal Canadiens. Puck drop against the Canadiens is scheduled for 3 PM.(Recap by Jason)
Analysis: The Golden Knights were not the better team on this night. They got outskated by a wide margin in the 1st period and fortunately exited down just one. They played much better in the 2nd and a bit better in the 3rd, but then overtime was an abomination. In the end, sometimes all that matters in the game of hockey is the guy between the pipes. Adin Hill put in an absolute masterclass and stole two points for the Golden Knights. (Analysis by Ken)
Last night the Golden Knights lost a gut-wrenching 3-2 overtime final to the New Jersey Devils. However, there’s an argument to be made that the game was lost with 10:26 in the 3rd period. Up to that point, the Golden Knights were leading 2-1 and controlled the game with strong 5-on-5 play. With ten minutes to go, New Jersey’s Brendan Smith spoiled the flow by hooking Jack Eichel and sending Vegas to the power play.
Five-on-five we did a lot of what we asked. What let us down today was probably our power play. We didn’t generate nearly enough in terms of extending the lead. We have to find a way to generate more. That’s where I thought we could have grabbed another goal for comfort. -Bruce Cassidy
Had the Golden Knights scored on their lone 3rd period power play the outcome likely would’ve changed. Cassidy’s team failed to extend their lead and barely challenged goaltender Vitek Vanecek. Instead of closing the door on New Jersey, Vegas mustered two low-percentage shots during a crucial 3rd period power play. Not only did the score remain the same but VGK’s listless PP gave life back to a dangerous Devils offense.
New Jersey coach Lindy Ruff had a sense his team would get another chance after Vegas’ ill-fated man advantage.
You have to stay around in games. You look for that opportunity. You know you are going to get two or three opportunities. If you stay with the program, you’re looking for the opportunities. In a 2-1 game we got rewarded by a 6-on-5 goal and then we finally got our power play opportunity in overtime. -Lindy Ruff, NJD coach
All combined, Vegas recorded three shots on net in four power play minutes. To make it worse, none of those attempts came from power play specialists Jack Eichel, Phil Kessel, Alex Pietrangelo, or Chandler Stephenson. Vegas generated just six total shot attempts in their six minutes of power play time and mustered up just 0.63 expected goals.
We gave up some big chances on some careless puck play. We could’ve developed more speed. We weren’t crisp with some of our passing and some of our rush execution. We turned some pucks over in our zone that we’ve been good with. Those were plays were Vitek had to make some huge saves for us. -Ruff, NJD coach
An additional moment Cassidy left out was the poorly timed tripping penalty committed by Ben Hutton in the overtime. Unfortunately, those are the risks a team faces when forced to shift a depth defenseman in a 3-on-3 situation. Don’t get me wrong, Hutton’s 2nd period dart earned him more ice time. However, he was overmatched in overtime.
Last shot was PK coverage. We thought we had a loose puck situation so we left the good ice and it squirts out. -Cassidy
Overall, the Golden Knights missed out on a golden opportunity but the team can take some positives away from their OT loss. Vegas overcame a 2nd period deficit, earned a point against a quality opponent, and thankfully gifted a point to an out-of-conference team. At this stage in the season every point exchange matters.
Recap: The Golden Knights continued their six-game road trip with a matchup against the New Jersey Devils. New Jersey jumped ahead 3:58 into the game but Vegas was able to weather the storm and hold it to a 1-0 Devils lead after 20 minutes of action.
Vegas’ offense warmed up in the middle frame, tallying two goals in a three-minute span. The Golden Knights turned the table and carried a 2-1 advantage into the second intermission.
The game tightened up in the final period making it difficult for New Jersey to generate many chances. However, late in the game the Devils tied the game on a 6-on-5 forcing an overtime period. Ben Hutton committed a tripping penalty in sudden death to give New Jersey a power play. The Devils completed the comeback and won 3-2 in OT.
The Golden Knights record drops 29-17-3 losing to the Devils 3-2 in OT. Next, Vegas will take on the New York Rangers on Friday evening. Puck drop is scheduled for 4 PM. (Recap by Jason)
Analysis: The Golden Knights played the style of road game you set out to play, especially when you are struggling. They were hard on their sticks, good along the wall, had strong puck support, and got great goaltending. They just wound up letting in two fluky goals and then got beat by a superhero play from Jack Hughes. Such a rough loss for a team that needed a win, but a point is so much better than coming out empty-handed. (Analysis by Ken)
Upcoming stories from the Vegas Golden Knights vs. New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center.
Recap: The visiting Devils picked up the first goal of the game seven minutes into the game. The Golden Knights had several chances but couldn’t connect on the game tying goal.
Most of the second period was back and forth. The Golden Knights registered 16 shots on net and we’re rewarded late in the frame. Keegan Kolesar evened the score with his seventh goal of the season. The game was locked in a 1-1 tie after 40 minutes.
The Devils shocked the hometown fans by stretching their lead to 3-1 in the final frame. Vegas fought back and got within one late in the game. However, they couldn’t tie the game and lost a heartbreaker 3-2 at home.
The Golden Knights record drops to 41-31-5 falling 3-2 at home to the Devils. Vegas failed to pick up two points and are in danger of running out of time. The Golden Knights get a chance to bounce back against the Washington Capitals on Wednesday night. Puck drop for a must-win game is set for 7 PM. (Recap by Jason)
Analysis: In a game the Golden Knights absolutely could not lose, they failed to convert on the numerous chances they had, and the goalie allowed multiple terrible goals. A miserable result that likely dooms a season that will be probably remembered as miserable. (Recap by Ken)
Upcoming stories from the Vegas Golden Knights vs. New Jersey Devils at T-Mobile Arena.
Overall, it wasn’t a great weekend for the Golden Knights. They were unable to secure more than three points on their three-game road trip. The Kings, Predators, and Stars all won games as well. Time is running out. So, after an unrewarding weekend the Golden Knights need to quickly find consistency in their game and will need a little luck along the way as well.
Let’s start off positive. The Golden Knights play the 26-42-7 New Jersey Devils tonight at home. NHL computer models predict Vegas will defeat New Jersey fairly easily, so tack on two points to their total. That places them with 89 points, one point behind LA, and two behind Dallas and Nashville. With five games left that keeps Vegas in the hunt. At this late stage of the season that’s all you can really ask for.
We knew we weren’t going to run the table. We talked about that two weeks ago. We were going to drop some points along the way. We’re still right in the thick of things. -Pete DeBoer
After tonight’s game against the Devils, the Golden Knights schedule becomes more demanding. On paper, Vegas has the lineup to win out. Mark Stone and Max Pacioretty’s legs and lungs are building back to form. Thinking optimistically, if they contribute in all remaining games the Golden Knights can win most, if not all.
We’ve got to find a way to score goals in these tough games. In tight, especially. Teams are going to really tighten up in the D-zone here moving forward so we’ve got to find a way to bear down up front. -Alex Pietrangelo