After three seasons in the league, no Western Conference team has pestered the Golden Knights like the Minnesota Wild. In eight games, the Wild are 6-1-1 against Vegas, including a 3-1-0 record at T-Mobile Arena. Minnesota’s success against Vegas came under former coach Bruce Boudreau who was happy to share his Sin City experiences with TSN Toronto.
We had great results in Vegas. In the three years they were in the league we’ve only lost once. If you look at our team in Minnesota out of the nine games in three years we only lost once to them. –Bruce Boudreau, Former NHL coach on TSN Toronto
Although he’s off by one game, Boudreau clearly enjoyed road trips to Vegas. His teams had success and he met his favorite poker player, Daniel Negreanu.
The 2007-08 Jack Adams winner was at first concerned about how his players would perform in Las Vegas, especially since there were reports of the “Vegas Flu” infecting incoming teams.
When we got the schedule the first thing that I was hoping was that we played somewhere else the night before. You’d get in at two in the morning and you’d go straight to bed. –Boudreau, TSN Toronto
Boudreau took a more laid-back approach when his team traveled to Las Vegas though. Sure, it was possible his players would take advantage of the unique NHL stopover, but he didn’t set any mandates. The coach’s main focus was planning on how to beat a really good Golden Knights club. Boudreau didn’t police his squad when they visited any other city so why change when they hit the Strip?
The one thing I found over the years is guys are really professional. If we had a day off you could see them all at the tables and they were playing. They weren’t drinking or anything. I’d much rather have them do that for a couple of hours. I don’t think they ever worried if the lost a thousand or won a thousand. –Boudreau, TSN Toronto