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Tag: Overtime

VGK Playing A Lot Of Overtime Games

(Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Last night the Golden Knights completed their 29th game of the season. Due to a bit of a late game lapse they ended up being forced into overtime for the 10th time this season.

Only one team in the league, Toronto with 11, has played more OT games than the Golden Knights to this point. Montreal, Seattle, and the New York Islanders have also all played 10 while the league average is just 5.4 OT games each.

The question becomes, is this a good or bad sign for the outlook on the 2023-24 Vegas Golden Knights?

Vegas’ history shows them to be a fairly normal team when it comes to overtime games. In four of their first six full seasons they were within one game of the league average. However, last year was not one of those four. The season in which the Golden Knights went on to become Stanley Cup Chapions, they played 22 overtime games in the regular season which tied for the 4th most in the league.

SeasonVGK OT GPLeague AverageVGK Rank

Under Bruce Cassidy the Golden Knights have been more prone to overtime games than prior to his arrival. Cassidy’s Boston teams followed a similar path with more than the league average in three of his final four seasons at the helm.

Vegas’ 22 OT games last year was the most by any Stanley Cup Champion since the Golden Knights entered the league.

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Overtime Woes Growing Concern For VGK

This guy can’t bail you out every time. (Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

The Golden Knights have played in nine regular-season overtime periods since they last scored an OT goal. They are 0 for 4 finding the back of the net in OT this year and went five straight without scoring in overtime to close out the 2018-19 regular season.

Add it all up, and Vegas has played 29:29 of overtime hockey since they last walked off the ice an overtime winner. They’ve gone an acceptable 4-5 in those games, winning all four in shootout, but their inability to score in 3-on-3 overtime is concerning.

The four OT games this year have totaled 13:48 of play. Vegas spent 1:38 of that time playing on the power play against Chicago yet still didn’t score.

In the nine games over the last two seasons, Vegas allowed the game-winning goal within the first :30 of OT on three separate occasions, including most recently against Montreal last week.

Since Mark Stone has been a member of the Golden Knights, they’ve not scored a single overtime goal despite playing in six OT games.

No matter how you slice it, it’s bad. It cost Vegas a few points last year, it’s cost them a couple already this year, and if it’s not corrected, it’ll cost them even more as the season progresses.

I wanted to see if I could identify some of the symptoms to the Golden Knights overtime issues, so I went back and watched all four OT games Vegas has played this season. In two, neither team scored and the Golden Knights won in shootout. In the other two, defensive breakdowns led directly to opposition goals in which the goalies had no chance. Obviously, those need to be avoided, but it’s been more than just the final moment that has been the problem for Vegas. There are two substantial issues they’ve had to this point. One when they have the puck, one when they don’t.

First, there have been way too many careless giveaways in overtime. In four overtime games, Vegas has given the puck away five times prior to creating a scoring chance on that possession. Stone, Theodore, Smith, Karlsson, and Marchessault have each had one and not a single one of them was even trying to make a play to lead directly to a goal.

In OT, the name of the game is possession. If you have the puck, you have a great chance to win. So, giving it away is a cardinal sin. It’s one thing to try and make a great play to set up a chance, but that’s not what’s been happening for Vegas. Instead, it’s simple giveaways, usually trying to keep the puck in the zone rather than taking it out and resetting. Here are two examples.

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Golden Knights Players Explain Why They Are Dominant In Overtime

The 3-on-3 Golden Knights struck again on Sunday night winning their fifth game in overtime game of the season. They are undefeated in the 3-on-3 portion of overtime (lost in shootout to Toronto) and have an impressive 4-0 record in the extra frame at T-Mobile Arena.

It’s easier when there’s fewer of us. (Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Back when the Golden Knights were just 2-0 in OT, we pointed out individual defensive efforts, line changes, and pure scoring skill as the reasons why the Golden Knights were having success in overtime. Well, now that they’ve pushed the number to five out of five, we need to add a few more aspects of the game that are leading to this OT domination.

To do that, I asked just about every player and coach I could find the exact same question, “what are you guys doing in overtime that other teams are not?”

I think it’s puck possession. We are a really high puck possession team, guys like James Neal, Marchessault, guys like that who like to hold on to the puck, and we are also really good off the rush. We do 2-on-1’s a lot in practice so I guess that’s helpful. –Alex Tuch

We just play well defensively and limit their chances, and we get a chance we’ve got to move, and we do that we are successful. We have good offensive power and if we just take care of being above them, we’ll get rewarded. –Jonathan Marchessault

Usually, I don’t think we trade as many chances as we did tonight (vs. ARI). We try not to do that, but it seems like we are finding different ways to win every time in overtime. –Reilly Smith

I think we are smart. Things like that little play off the boards by Marchessault, he’s made plays like that that create odd-man rushes, same with Smith, Perry (Perron), and all those skill guys, we have forwards that do it all. We’re playing tight and trying to control the play, and honestly, I can’t say enough about the fans here. They give us so much energy and so much adrenaline that gives us an advantage over the other team. –Malcolm Subban

We got some good, skilled players and they’re quick players. I think when there’s open ice, we’re a pretty good team. It’s early, but so far we’ve been really good at it. -Gerard Gallant

Here’s are the skills/reasons we took out of all of that.

  • Puck possession
  • Scoring and defending 2-on-1’s
  • Skilled possession-minded forwards
  • Quick players that find open ice
  • Not trading chances
  • Home crowd

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“We’re Not Afraid To Lose In OT” – Golden Knights 3-0 Record Proves It

“In OT we just know that you have to take some risks to win the game, and that’s what we do.”  (Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

We’ve all heard the phrase ‘playing with house money’ before.

Playing with house money refers to money that was given to you, easily obtained, or stumbled upon. In other words risking it as in a bet means you would have nothing to lose. -Urban Dictionary

At a surprising (6-1) record, and (3-0) in overtime, that’s exactly what the Golden Knights feel they are doing early in the season. The stress-free work environment of an expansion team with no expectations has players loose and taking risks to keep racking up W’s.

Yeah, obviously it’s a pressure thing. If you’re down one, you tend to pinch down more and go for those fifty-fifty pucks. You got to play smart but at the same time you can’t just back off. –Luca Sbisa

Sbisa’s role with the Golden Knights has grown into a top-line defenseman, on 5-on-5, 4-on-5 and 3-on-3. Gerard Gallant has deployed the Neal-Perron-Sbisa line to start each of the last two overtime periods, and Sbisa was on the ice for the OT goal against Buffalo. Is there a reason why the team is having early success in overtime?

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2-0 In 3-On-3; How and Why The Golden Knights Have Done Well

When it comes to the Golden Knights 5-1 start there’s really not much you can point at and say “well that makes sense,” but nothing’s been more surprising than the Golden Knights success in overtime thus far.

This 3-on-3 thing’s pretty easy. (Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

In six games the Golden Knights have been to overtime twice. They beat the Coyotes in Arizona in the second game of the year and then knocked off Buffalo Tuesday night late in the extra frame.

Normally, when it comes to three on three overtime, the team with the highest skilled skaters wins the day. The game in Arizona is debatable, but there’s no doubt the trio of Jack Eichel, Ryan O’Reilly, and Evander Kane out-skill anything Vegas can throw out there.

Yet, when it was all said and done, the Golden Knights were able to get the job done.

You look at our hockey team and people wonder if we are going to be as good in overtime because of the skill level, cause a lot of teams can put out some very talented players, but I think you look at our group, there’s guys with speed, guys with skill and that’s what’s impressive. I thought our guys have done a great job in overtime. They moved the puck and David Perron scored a beautiful goal. I just hope it keeps going. –Gerard Gallant

The two overtime periods were almost direct opposites of each other. In Arizona, the Coyotes controlled the puck for a majority of the period before a magical play by Perron opened the door for James Neal to get the goal. At home against Buffalo, the Golden Knights controlled the puck for most of the four minutes and finally scored on somewhat of a broken play.

The Golden Knights did do three things very well in both periods, which is ultimately why they found the game-winner in both.

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