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WASHINGTON CAPITALS 5 VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS 2 (9-6-3 21 PTS)

The Golden Knights put themselves in an early hole giving up a goal to Evgeny Kuznetsov :58 seconds into the game. The Capitals scored again five minutes later. Vegas would grind back and get within one on Max Pacioretty’s fifth of the year.

Washington would take a 3-1 lead early in the 2nd period but again Vegas would continue to chip away. Reilly Smith would make it 3-2 on a Golden Knights power play with his team leading 10th goal of the year.

The Golden Knights would begin the 3rd on the power play but couldn’t score a game tying goal. The Capitals would take another two goal lead with a power play goal by Nick Backstrom. Vegas would kill a 5-on-3 but couldn’t creep back. Washington would get a late empty netter to win 5-2.

Vegas’ record drops to (9-6-3) and sit with 21 points. The Golden Knights get right back to it tomorrow afternoon in Detroit. Faceoff against the Red Wings is scheduled for 2PM. (Recap by Jason)


Upcoming stories from the Vegas Golden Knights at Washington Capitals at Capital One Arena

  • Steve Carp’s Sunday column on the Jonny Greco’s departure. (Plus, his 5 favorite in-arena moments in VGK history.)

Ken’s Three VGK Stars
*** Reilly Smith
** Brayden McNabb
* Max Pacioretty

Golden Knights vs. Washington Capitals Photo Gallery – December 4th, 2018

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VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS 5 WASHINGTON CAPITALS 3 (15-13-1 31 PTS)

An early power play goal got things going for the Golden Knights. Ryan Reaves put home an excellent pass in front of the goal from Cody Eakin. Then the game started to get a bit ugly as the hitting rained down all over the ice. Reaves lit up Tom Wilson, Alex Ovechkin destroyed Tomas Nosek, and William Carrier was hitting everything that moved. During it all, Washington took the lead back. The Golden Knights killed the 5-minute major penalty that sent Reaves to the showers for hitting Tom Wilson. Then. Vegas scored twice in 16 seconds to regain the lead. Nate Schmidt scored late in a 4-minute power play to give the Golden Knights the lead very late in the 3rd and then Schmidt nailed the empty netter to seal it. The game of the year in the NHL to this point.

Upcoming stories from the Vegas Golden Knights vs Washington Capitals at T-Mobile Arena.

  • Carp’s column on Seattle expansion, including quotes from Foley on taking the exemption over the money.
  • Photo gallery from this incredible game
  • The most consistent part of the Golden Knights game: Penalty Killing

Three Stars
*** Cody Eakin
** Pierre-Edouard Bellemare
* Nate Schmidt

Ryan Reaves #75 of the Vegas Golden Knights taunts Tom Wilson #43 of the Washington Capitals after checking him to the ice at the T-Mobile Arena on December 4, 2018 in Las Vegas, NV. (Photo by Brandon Andreasen)

Two Golden Knights Say VGK Played Well, Two Others Completely Disagree; The Divide Is Not Ideal

There hasn’t been nearly enough of this thus far. (Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

The Golden Knights are now 1-3-0 in their first four games of the season. Two points in four games is not going to make anyone happy. However, there is a bit of a sense that Vegas has been playing a little better than the scores have indicated at times.

Specifically, last night in Washington, the Golden Knights created plenty of goal scoring chances and got bit by the post a few times. To me, it was a well-played game for Vegas on the road against the best team in hockey. On most nights, especially at home, that level of play will win games, even with the few mistakes that were made. One Golden Knight and the Jack Adams award winner agree.

Maybe the score wasn’t relative to the game that was shown. We had a lot of posts, maybe three or four. We had the puck a lot. I thought it was probably one of our better games so far. It’s a good sign. We are getting chances, we are getting pucks to the net. We’re going to score at some point. -Marc-Andre Fleury

I thought we played a real good game 5-on-5, we got lots of scoring chances, their goalie played real well, so I liked a lot of our game but we gave them too many odd-man rushes and too many power plays. -Gerard Gallant

However, that sentiment was not shared by everyone in the locker room.

I don’t think this was our best game. We played like a team with no identity and if we are going to try and trade chances with the Capitals we aren’t going to win. It wasn’t our best and there are some things we can tighten up and I think awareness is something we can do a much better job with. -Reilly Smith

I just think as a whole we aren’t playing our game. We are taking too many penalties. It’s a long year but we have to figure out things quick. Our goal from this road trip is to be a .500 team and when we are playing like this, that’s not going to happen. We definitely have to work some things out and find our game. -Shea Theodore

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WASHINGTON CAPITALS 5 VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS 2 (1-3-0 2 PTS)

Vegas played a much better first two periods out-chancing the Caps. But, like has been the norm through three and a half games the scoreboard did not agree. Washington scored on the power play and then on a quick odd-man rush. Holtby stoned a number of great chances from the Golden Knights top line. Cody Eakin scored a great wraparound goal in his first game of the year. The Golden Knights fought back time and time again but just could not get the game tied. Score looks a lot worse than the game actually was.

Upcoming stories from the Vegas Golden Knights vs. Washington Capitals at CapitalOne Arena.

  • Not only are the Golden Knights disjointed on the ice, but they’ve also been disjointed in how they’re feeling about their play.

Three Stars
*** Nicklas Backstrom
** Alex Ovechkin
* Evgeny Kuznetsov

WASHINGTON CAPITALS 4 VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS 3 (4-1 WSH)

The game got off to a horribly slow start with neither team creating much of anything. Then a penalty by Colin Miller gave the Capitals their first real opportunity of the game. Alex Ovechkin banged one off the bar and Vegas escaped unscathed. The period ended scoreless, not the Golden Knights best though.

The 2nd was the complete opposite. Five total goals were scored in a span of 14 minutes in the period. Washington scored first and third, the Golden Knights came back to tie the game twice with goals from Nate Schmidt and David Perron. Then, a late power play goal from Reilly Smith put Vegas ahead for the first time since the 1st period of Game 2. Following the goal, a massive scrum ensued which resulted in four roughing penalties.

Vegas had a couple good chances to open the period, specifically from the second line. Tomas Tatar then took a hooking penalty which opened the door again for the Capital power play. They were unable to convert, but that didn’t stop them from pouring on the pressure and ending the Golden Knights dreams of winning the Stanley Cup in their expansion season. A pair of 3rd period goals gave the Capitals the lead, one they would hold to the finish to win the Stanley Cup.

Upcoming stories from the Vegas Golden Knights vs. Washington Capitals in Game 5 of Stanley Cup Final of the Stanley Cup Playoffs at T-Mobile Arena.

  • Three wins short.
  • The first of many posts looking towards next year and how the Golden Knights can complete the final hurdle.

Three Stars
*** David Perron
** Devante Smith-Pelly
* Lars Eller

 

WASHINGTON CAPITALS 6 VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS 2 (3-1 WSH)

The Golden Knights came out looking like the best team in hockey for the first 10 minutes of the game. All four lines were buzzing, they created three or four Grade A chances, but Brayden Holtby and his post kept all of them out. Then, a tripping penalty in the center of the ice on Colin Miller led to a power play goal and the ceiling caved in from there. Two more 1st period goals sent the game to intermission at 3-0 and the Golden Knights into a hole in the series they will have a very tough time climbing out of.

Another barrage of VGK chances opened the 2nd, and once again, the posts and Holtby kept them all from getting to the net. A power play the other way and the Caps take advantage again.

The Golden Knights cut it to 4-2 with a couple goals in the 3rd, but couldn’t keep the Capitals off the board. Just not Vegas’ night and not a good trip to Washington.

Now, it’s a 3-1 deficit in the series and the Golden Knights will look to become the first team since 1942 to win three straight when down 3-1 and win a series.

Upcoming stories from the Vegas Golden Knights vs. Washington Capitals in Game 4 of Stanley Cup Final of the Stanley Cup Playoffs at Capital One Arena.

  • The must-win Golden Knights arrived on time, created chances, but couldn’t get one to go. Then, they disappeared. Their chances in the series likely went with them.
  • The ugly numbers behind 3-1.

Three Stars
*** Brayden Holtby
** Evgeny Kuznetsov
* T.J. Oshie

Golden Knights Didn’t Solve Problems Like They Normally Do

When the Golden Knights have lost in the playoffs, and it hasn’t been often, they’ve always found a way to correct their wrongs. They’ve learned from their mistakes, fixed them, and have not fallen into the same traps that saw them on the wrong end of the scoreboard the previous game. Many times in the postseason they’ve even won games, still realized their errors, and cleaned them up the next time out.

Another new problem was Shea Theodore’s ineffectiveness. A bad time for his worst game. (Photo Credit: SinBin.vegas Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Tonight, they did not.

They fell into a hole, they didn’t get enough traffic in front, they didn’t forecheck as a unit, they couldn’t break through the clogged up neutral zone, and they didn’t finish the chances when they were there. Problems in Game 2 were problems in Game 3 and that is not normal for the Western Conference Champions.

They’re winning a lot of the battles, blocking a lot of the shots and we haven’t been good enough at finding a way to be successful against it. Just go home, evaluate and get better. -Cody Eakin

In addition to the “old” problems of Game 2, there were a few new ones as well.

We aren’t getting enough shots at all. It doesn’t cut it, it’s not good enough. -Alex Tuch

They’re battling hard and we weren’t. -Derk Engelland

We’re not used to seeing this with this group. It’s not just the back-to-back losses, it’s the similarities in them. Once again the Golden Knights did not play like the Golden Knights, and once again they fell victim to the same issues that hanted them in Game 2.

We gave them some chances again, we’ve got to fix it… As offensive guys, we’ve got to make plays. -David Perron

Falling behind didn’t help either.

They came out in the 1st period and set the tone real good and again we were chasing them all night. -Gerard Gallant

Game 4 is about finding a way to correct these issues. They’ve done it all year, they’ve got to do it again.

We’ve got to be better and we will be better for Game 4. -Tuch

The “must-win” Golden Knights need to show up to Capital One Arena on Monday.

WASHINGTON CAPITALS 3 VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS 1 (2-1 WSH)

The Capitals had a few strong chances early including one that actually got past Fleury. However, a goalie interference penalty brought the goal back and put the Golden Knights on the power play. Vegas’ best chance came when Jonathan Marchessault joined the play off a change and hit the post. The period came to a close scoreless, but it certainly was not without its chances.

The 2nd period was the one that got away from the Golden Knights. They gave up chance after chance after chance on a scramble in front of the goal and eventually Alex Ovechkin cashed in. Then another goal later in the period put the Golden Knights in a massive hole.

The Golden Knights were gifted a goal early in the 3rd to get back within one, but yet another mistake by Shea Theodore hands the Capitals the goal right back late.

Washington now leads the series 2-1 and the Golden Knights have their backs as close to the wall as they’ve ever had for Monday’s Game 4.

Upcoming stories from the Vegas Golden Knights vs. Washington Capitals in Game 3 of Stanley Cup Final of the Stanley Cup Playoffs at Capital One Arena.

  • A team that’s learned from and corrected mistakes all season long hasn’t in the past two games. Why?
  • Golden Knights 2nd line not getting the job done on either end.

Three Stars
*** Brayden Holtby
** Jay Beagle
* Evgeny Kuznetsov

Stanley Cup Final Game 2: Golden Knights vs. Washington Capitals – Photo Gallery – May 30th, 2018

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