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Ranking The 7 Years Of Center Circles

Earlier this week the Golden Knights unveiled the new center circle for this season’s games at T-Mobile Arena. It’s the seventh consecutive season Vegas will see a new center circle in the neutral zone. Let’s go back over all seven and rank them from best to worst.

#7 – Year 5

It’s kind of unfair because I actually really do like this design, but it’s a flower, and they put it in the center of the ice for the season right after the front office jettisoned the most popular and influential player in franchise history… who also happened to garner the nickname Flower. The red is a great touch, the use of the filigree design in the logo is a plus, and it has a sort of desert feel. But… It’s a flower. There’s just no escaping it.

#6 – Year 4

I’ve honestly never understood this one. What exactly is the design? It kind of looks like it could be something close to a spade or a club on a playing card, but I see an inkblot more so than anything (and you never want my thoughts on inkblots). The inner circle cutting the entire graphic into essentially three circles is just too much for me too. The stars are nice though.

#5 – Year 1

This is really just a nostalgic thing. Obviously, there’s nothing to this design and there’s no doubt it’s the worst red-line design in team history too, but come on, how can you not love anything and everything Year 1? What’s going on with the spacing on the word “Arena” too? Oh well, Year 1 > Flower.

#4 – Year 6

This design is completely saved by the glow-in-the-dark aspect. The nod to the Reverse Retro jerseys is nice (those jerseys are amazing), it’s just the color that’s a little odd. That being said, a two-tone VGK logo always makes me happy. I’ve always liked the two-tone logo better than the actual logo with all four colors.

#3 – Year 2

This is what a center circle is meant to look like in the NHL. It’s not over-the-top, yet it still gets in all of the elements we’re looking for. Have to love the Sword Star logo making multiple appearances too. Clean, precise, nice.

#2 – Year 3

This one is spectacular. Whereas the last one is what most teams would consider a standard center circle, this one fits what Vegas does for theirs. The pattern around the outside is perfect, there’s a ton of gold, and the colors match brilliantly. Honestly, I thought this one would never be topped.

#1 – Year 7

Absolutely stunning. Personally, I’m a fan of celebrating the heck out of a championship season. I want massive banners all over the arena, use the words “Stanley Cup Champions” literally every time they say Golden Knights, and wear the patch on the jersey until the stitching wears out. This though, oh my goodness, it’s so much better than all of that. The design borrows from the Stanley Cup, as if Vegas painted the Cup gold. It’s subtle, yet arrogant. The perfect combination for the reigning, defending, undisputed champions of the world.

**Stick tap to for the images. It’s worth a click over to the site to see the full image of each season’s rink. Really impressive graphics to give you a nice trip down memory lane.**

5 Most Anticipated Home Games

We’re just 49 days away from the Golden Knights beginning their quest to repeat as Stanley Cup Champions. Today, single-game tickets went on sale to the general public and there are plenty of seats available right now to see the reigning champs.

Hopefully, you are able to go to all the games, or at least many of them, but if you have to pick just one, here are the five best home games on the schedule this season.

5) December 28th, 2023 vs Los Angeles Kings

First off, this is the final game for the Golden Knights before they head up to Seattle for the Winter Classic. It also falls in a spot in the schedule where there aren’t many games in Vegas. The previous home game is on December 17th and the following one is not until January 4th which means this matchup with the Kings is the only home game for 18 days.

The bigger part of this though is that this is the third and final matchup of the season against the Los Angeles Kings. LA spent a lot of assets this summer looking to upgrade their roster and they are one of the most likely candidates to challenge the Golden Knights for the Pacific crown. It’s a difficult spot against a difficult opponent with a signature game on the horizon. If VGK can win this game, it should be a statement.

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VGK Fans Eyeing Home Ice Gentlemen’s Sweep

(Photo Credit: Ken Boehlke,

After four Stanley Cup Finals games, the current situation couldn’t have set up any better for Vegas Golden Knights fans. Their favorite hockey team is 60 minutes away from hoisting the city’s first Stanley Cup trophy. Along with the Las Vegas Aces, the Golden Knights have a chance on Tuesday to deliver the second professional sports championship in city and state history.

Funny enough, Stanley Cup champions tend to end a series on the road. The Golden Knights can buck that trend a win in Game 5. Since 2000, 10 teams were presented the 124-year-old trophy on home ice, and only three over the past 10 seasons. That rare occurrence can happen for a fourth time in front of passionate home fans on Tuesday.

SCF Winning Team – Home/Road Clinching Game Since 2013

  • 2022: COL – Road
  • 2021: TB – Home
  • 2020: TB – Neutral
  • 2019: STL – Road
  • 2018: WAS – Road
  • 2017: PIT – Road
  • 2016: PIT – Road
  • 2015: CHI – Home
  • 2014: LA – Home
  • 2013: CHI – Road

Tampa Bay snapped the five-year road stretch in 2021 when they defeated the visiting Montreal Canadiens in five games. The Golden Knights could match the Lightning’s approach tomorrow night from T-Mobile Arena.

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Kessel, Vegas, T-Mobile Arena Ice Mentioned In 2023 NHLPA Players Poll

Every year the NHLPA releases the results of an anonymous poll given to players on a wide variety of topics. This year, 626 players participated in the 14-question survey.

As usual, Vegas and Golden Knights players are commonly found among the results. The strongest year in VGK history in regards to mentions in the poll was 2019-20 when there were seven mentions. This year there are just three, but they are a powerful trio.

This is the second consecutive year the question has been on the poll, and unsurprisingly Las Vegas has dominated both years. Vegas actually took a larger share of the vote this year getting 31.7% while it came in just over 30% last season. 193 players out of the 609 who answered the question selected Vegas.

A pair of familiar names make the cut on this one. Kessel was selected by 12 of the 448 players polled. He’s not the only Kessel on the list either. Phil’s sister Amanda was named among the female players NHLers would most like to play with.

Finally, the ice. T-Mobile Arena has always had a stellar reputation in this category. The question has been asked four out of the last six years and T-Mobile has been in the Top 5 each and every time. This year’s 6% is the second largest share Vegas has ever received, only behind a 4th place 8.7% finish in 2019-20.

Here are all of the resuts including Vegas over the six years the Golden Knights have been in the league. You can see the full poll here.


Best Ice: T-Mobile Arena (5th place, 6%)
Best Road City: Las Vegas (1st Place, 31.7%)
Best Locker Room Guy: Phil Kessel (T-2nd Place, 2.7%)


Best Ice: T-Mobile Arena (T-4th Place, 5.9%)
Best Road City: Las Vegas (1st Place, 30.6%)
Best Hair: William Karlsson (2nd Place, 7.9%)


Best Goalie: Marc-Andre Fleury (2nd Place, 8.9%)


Best Goalie: Marc-Andre Fleury (3rd Place, 8.9%)
Best Trash Talker: Ryan Reaves (3rd Place, 11.1%)
Worst Trash Talker: Nick Cousins (4th Place, 5.6%)
Best Golfer: Mark Stone (5th Place, 3.8%)
Best Visitors Dressing Room: T-Mobile Arena (2nd Place, 26.4%)
Best Jersey: Vegas Golden Knights (T-2nd Place, 6.8%)
Best Ice: T-Mobile Arena (4th Place, 8.7%)


Best Goalie: Marc-Andre Fleury (4th Place, 6.5%)
Best TV Analyst When Retired: Ryan Reaves (3rd Place, 2.4%)
Best Trash Talker: Ryan Reaves (3rd Place, 5.5%)
Best Arena Atmosphere: T-Mobile Arena (1st Place, 42.5%)
Best Ice: T-Mobile Arena (5th Place, 4.7%)
Best Hair: William Karlsson (3rd Place, 5.7%)


Toughest Player: Ryan Reaves (1st Place, 44.7%)
Best Coach To Play For: Gerard Gallant (3rd Place, 11.6%)

Cassidy Weighs In On Why Golden Knights Are Struggling At Home

(Photo Credit: Ken Boehlke,

Why do the Golden Knights stink at home?

It really is the million-dollar question right now and everyone likely feels the same as Reilly Smith after the last game.

I feel like if we knew, we’d have flipped it around a while ago. -Smith

The players mostly seem to be on the same page chalking it up to coincidence and/or the randomness of an 82-game season more than anything else.

The coach, on the other hand, has a much more specific view of what’s going wrong.

At home our problem is that we’re trying to make plays early in the game against every team that comes in here. They’re ready to play and it’s not working out. It’s what we do well on the road to other teams. It’s checking well, getting pucks back, and taking advantage of our opportunities. -Bruce Cassidy

The buzzword for Cassidy is puck management.

That’s the mindset I’ve got to get across to the guys at home, we have to manage the puck better. Once they go over the boards, the onus is on them. They’re the ones that have to have to manage the puck better and that’s our problem right now, that’s why we’re .500 at home. -Cassidy

The head coach believes pressing for offense is not only what is keeping his team from being able to score, but also forcing them to concede. His stress has been on taking what the game gives you, which changes against each team they play.

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Home Is Where The Problems Are

(Photo Credit: Ken Boehlke,

The Golden Knights have now lost three consecutive home games, all by at least two goals, and have scored just four times in nine periods of action at T-Mobile Arena.

After a 5-1-0 start in Las Vegas the home record has slipped to 7-6-1 while the Golden Knights continue to dominate away from the friendly confines of The Strip, posting a sterling 12-2-1 record on the road.

The question is, why?

Sometimes it’s just the way it goes. Maybe after Christmas it might switch. It doesn’t matter if we play at home or away if you are a professional hockey player you have to find a way to bring your best performance. It’s extra disappointing for our group to not show up in front of our fans because we play in the best place in the league. -Jonathan Marchessault

There’s certainly a chance coincidence plays a part but the head coach believes it goes a bit deeper than that.

Games like tonight on the road we would have found a way to stay in it. Our game management is better on the road. -Bruce Cassidy

The splits are pretty staggering to back that up.

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Even The Usually Home Dominant VGK Have Seen Losing Skids Like This

(Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Since entering the league, the Golden Knights are an astounding 108-48-15 when playing at T-Mobile Arena. But this year, they’ve stumbled to just a 12-10-2 record and are experiencing one of the worst home slides in franchise history.

The point of this article is to highlight the phrase “one of” as opposed to simply calling it, the worst home slide in franchise history.

The Golden Knights have lost each of the last three games, they’ve dropped five of six, and have lost seven of their last 10 games at home. Despite the insane .675 points percentage at home, Vegas has experienced streaks at least as bad as all three of the instances mentioned in the last sentence.

We’ll start with the first one, losing three in a row. This is actually the 7th time the Golden Knights have been on at least a three-game losing streak at home. They did it once earlier this season in the three home games following the season opener against the Kraken. Losses to St. Louis, Edmonton, and the New York Islanders sent the Golden Knights off to a 1-4-0 record to start the year.

But three games isn’t even one away from the longest home losing streak. Vegas has lost four straight three different times including once in each of their first three seasons in the league. Even the magical 2017-18 Misfits fell four straight times at home, losing to Los Angeles, Ottawa, New Jersey, and Minnesota and being outscored 21 to 10 along the way. The worst home losing streak ever came the following season, in 2018-19. That year, VGK dropped five straight at home as part of a run that still holds all the records for worst home stretch in team history.

That stretch is the only other time the Golden Knights have suffered losses of five of six and/or seven of 10 inside T-Mobile Arena, and trust me, that collection of games was much worse than this one.

You can find a collection of five losses in six games on either end of the five-game losing streak that ran from January 21st to February 14th of 2019. The Golden Knights beat the Penguins 7-3 at home before dropping five in a row to Minnesota, Nashville, Columbus, Arizona, and Toronto. Then, they beat the Predators 5-1 at T-Mobile Arena before dropping two more at home to Boston and Winnipeg.

All in all, VGK lost eight home games out of 10 and watched themselves go from just two points behind the division-leading Calgary Flames to 14 points behind in the matter of five weeks.

What all of this is meant to show is that home success throughout the entirety of a regular season is rare. Even a team that consistently wins upwards of 65% of their games at home goes through rough patches just like the one the Golden Knights are on right now.

That being said, it would be really nice if they put an end to the home losing tomorrow against a terrible Montreal team.

Carp: The Case For Stone’s Selke

**Southern Nevada Sports Hall of Famer, Steve Carp’s returns to for the 2021 season. His weekly column publishes every Sunday during the Golden Knights season and is brought to you by the Jimmerson Law Firm.**

In their brief existence, the Golden Knights have won four individual NHL awards — all in 2018: William Karlsson took the Lady Byng, Deryk Engelland the Mark Messier Leadership Award, Gerard Gallant the Jack Adams, and George McPhee the General Manager of Year.

Will Mark Stone’s name be added to the list this summer?

The Captain is worthy of the Frank J. Selke Trophy, which goes to the top defensive forward, and he should be in the conversation for the Hart Trophy which goes to the league’s MVP.

The latter might be more problematic, given Edmonton’s Connor McDavid likely has a lock on that. The Hart is supposed to be for “most valuable to his team” and it’s hard to argue against McDavid. But Stone has certainly been Vegas’ MVP this season. Yes, Max Pacioretty has more goals. Yes, Marc-Andre Fleury has been sensational in net. But when you look at the totality of it, who has done more for this team than Stone?

He leads the team in scoring and is tied for ninth in the league with 57 points. He is an excellent penalty killer. He uses that long stick to break up opposing scoring opportunities before they ever manifest themselves. He blocks shots and plays the body in his own end . He’s a +26, third in the NHL among forwards. In other words, Stone checks all the Selke boxes.

Yet, for all the good things he has done for the Golden Knights, it might not get recognized around the league when it comes to the Selke. The good folks in Canada who vote for this may not be paying close enough attention to what’s going on here, though I have faith in my Professional Hockey Writers Association brethren that they are in tune with what’s happening beyond the North Division.

That said, McDavid’s Edmonton sidekick, Leon Draisaitl, is going to get a lot of consideration, as will Florida’s Aleksander Barsov and Boston’s Patrice Bergeron (a four-time Selke winner), and Brad Marchand. Some might try and make a case for Ryan O’Reilly in St. Louis, Joel Erikkson-Ek in Minnesota, and Martin Necas in Carolina.

But here’s why Stone should be strongly considered, if not the outright favorite, for the Selke. He’s been making great plays all season. But in Wednesday’s 5-2 win over the Avalanche, a game everyone can agree was huge for both teams, Stone delivered.

Watch him here as he sets up Pacioretty for the fourth goal early in the third period:

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Sharks Credit Limited Golden Knights Fans For Noisy Game, Poor Officiating

(Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

It may have only been 20% but it felt like a full house last night at T-Mobile Arena. Not only did Vegas get a boost from their star goaltender but also from the 3,473 fans in attendance. Labeled the loudest fans in hockey, the limited amount of VGK faithful made sure San Jose heard them loud and clear.

According to San Jose coach Bob Boughner, the building was loud.

We were in another team’s building. There were fans in here tonight. It was loud and I think that makes things harder on everybody. -Bob Boughner, San Jose coach

One theme brought up several times by members of the Sharks was the officiating. San Jose felt there were two or three missed calls that should’ve gone their way. Even Sharks broadcaster Randy Hanh was upset with the zebras.

It’s possible the officials were distracted by the crowd. Like the players, they’ve been skating in empty arenas as well. More than likely Boughner was complimenting the noisy crowd by taking a jab at the referee. Either way, last night the fans made some impact on the ice.

Defenseman Shea Theodore sure thought so.

Yeah, even when we had 15% the fans were still buzzing. The more fans the better. I thought they were loud and there was definitely times we were feeding off that. Hopefully, that continues moving forward. -Shea Theodore

Since the inaugural season, Vegas fans have been recognized as one of the loudest and supportive fanbases in hockey. The team on the ice has undoubtedly benefited from their faithful’s rowdiness. Including last night’s victory against the Sharks, the Golden Knights are now 86-35-12 when playing on home ice.

Home ice advantage hasn’t existed in over a year now, but it should in these upcoming playoffs. More so if the Golden Knights play a team in California or Canada who aren’t rushing to open venues. Playing in an opponent’s empty building while they must come to Vegas and contend with a half-packed T-Mobile Arena should be a major advantage for VGK.

Everyone from fans to the state government is hoping T-Mobile Arena will get back to normal occupancy by the start of the postseason. Signs are beginning to point in that direction but nothing can be certain in 2021. (From what we are hearing, 50% seems likely soon but 100% still seems a bit far off.)

We now know what 3,400+ fans sound like and the effect an opposing coach believes they have. Imagine what 8,000+ can do.

Stars Fans Watch Western Conference Finals In Unique Fashion

Tonight will mark the second time Dallas Stars fans will be able to sit in an arena seat and cheer on their favorite hockey club since March 10th. What began Tuesday for Game 2 has now turned into a unique event for the rest of the Western Conference Finals. Something, I’m sure would be a huge hit with Vegas fans… if the government would allow it.

American Airlines Center has opened its doors for a reduced capacity watch party for 3500-4000 Stars fans. It’s free to the public but fans have to be lucky enough to reserve one of the socially spaced-out tickets.

Regulations are looser in Texas compared to different COVID-19 restrictions that are in place in Nevada. However, in Dallas, the reported new cases were triple to what Las Vegas has seen in recent days. I’m not suggesting that local and state governments are overprotecting Nevadans, but a socially-distanced playoff watch party at T-Mobile Arena would be an enormous event. And not just for the 3500+ in attendance.

Stars fans will line up outside the arena tonight six-feet apart and wearing masks, rushing in to find their limited seat. They’ll go through security, be able to grab a snack and a soda at the concession stand and watch the Western Conference Finals from an NHL arena seat. Pretty cool right?

There are numerous detractors urging fans to voice their concerns with the Stars. So far, the complaints haven’t been loud enough for the team to cancel their coveted arena watch parties.

Is it possible Dallas is starting a trend Vegas could follow for the next and final round? If the Golden Knights keep their eyes on how safe and secure the Stars make their watch parties, I’m sure there will be future conversations. Of course, Vegas has to get there first.

The biggest problem, there’s only enough socially-distanced space at T-Mobile Arena for 3600 lucky fans. Let’s worry about that after the Golden Knights take care of business.

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