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VGK May Break Season Scoring Record, But Scoring In The Playoffs Remains A Major Concern

(Photo Credit: Photographer Brandon Andreasen)

Yesterday I published a piece looking at all of the records the Golden Knights could potentially break this season. From blocks to faceoffs to road points percentage, it wasn’t terribly surprising to see how many records may fall this year.

However, there was one that did catch me a bit off guard and it made me question one of the strongest beliefs I’ve had about this team for the past few seasons.

The 2022-23 Golden Knights are 41 goals from breaking the franchise record for most goals scored in a season. With 12 games to go, they’ll need to score 3.4 per game to set the new high water mark. Considering this year’s team is averaging 3.24 per game this year, it absolutely could happen, or at the very least could come down to a goal or two difference.

Yet here I sit here with the core belief that the Golden Knights are lacking the proper level of offense necessary to win the Stanley Cup. And after doing some digging into the numbers, I still believe it.

So how can a team on pace to score well over three goals per game and possibly break the scoring record set by the legendary team that won 13 playoff games still be short offensively?

The first reason is that this year’s team is more boom or bust than the 2017-18 team.

In 82 games, the 17-18 Golden Knights failed to score three goals 26 times, or 32%. This year’s team has done it 28 times in 70 games, for 40% of the schedule. Meanwhile, this year’s team has posted at least five goals 19 times, or 27%, while the first year team also did it 19 times, but in all 82, or 23%.

That means this year’s team scores less than two or more than four in 67%, two-thirds, of games while the 17-18 team had a boom-or-bust rate a little over half of the games at 55%.

The other main difference comes with opposition. Remember, this year’s team averages 3.24 goals per game. Against playoff teams, that number dips to 2.78, almost half a goal fewer per game against the league’s best teams. In 17-18, the team averaged 3.27 goals, when they played the 15 other playoff teams, the number dipped to just 3.1.

In a seven-game series, this year’s team would be missing out on more than three goals, while the 17-18 team was down only one from their season average.

Finally, it’s about home games. This year’s team has scored 114 goals in 37 games at T-Mobile Arena. Compare that to Year 1 when they scored 146 in 41. That’s a difference of 32 goals with just four games left to play.

On the Cup run, the 17-18 team went 7-3 at home in the playoffs. They scored 36 goals in those 10 games for an impressive average of 3.6 per game. That number fell right in line with their 3.56 per game at home in the regular season. On the road, the results were close, they went 6-4, but the scoring was way down. VGK scored just 21 goals in 10 playoff road games. That’s 2.1 per game, a fairly large dropoff from their 2.96 per game during the regular season. It was similar in the other extended playoff run the Golden Knights had in 2021.

2018 Playoffs (20 Games)
Home Regular – 3.56
Home Playoffs – 3.60
Road Regular – 2.98
Road Playoffs – 2.10

2021 Playoffs (19 Games)
Home Regular – 3.46
Home Playoffs – 3.20
Road Regular – 3.32
Road Playoffs – 2.33

Since 2018, just 15 of 66 teams to participate in the playoffs have averaged more than three goals per game on the road. (This excludes the 2020 season when all playoff games were played at a neutral site without fans.) This year’s Golden Knights average 3.42 goals per game on the road compared to 3.08 at home.

None of this is to say it’s impossible that the Golden Knights can go on a run in the playoffs, especially if they get Mark Stone back. But it’s still going to take excellent goaltending and strong defense to make it happen. That’s because even if this year’s team breaks the record for most goals in a season, they’re still likely to struggle in many individual games in the playoffs.


Chasing Franchise Records Down The Stretch




  1. Jailbird

    Yes of course you have to score goals to win games, both reg season and POs. But I feel the Knights more defensive style of play will serve then well come playoff time. As far as who to play when we get back our injured forwards, I think Cassidy leans toward experience. Even though we have had a couple young guys playing well, I think he starts the playoffs with his most experienced players?

  2. Kevin

    For VGK to survive, they’ll have to step up their D to compensate. They’ve been living there all year. VGK scores less than Edmonton, for example, but VGK defense keeps the GA low, allowing for the win opportunity. Edmonton’s GA is horrible, but they offset that with the better offense. So, you just have to have enough defense to keep the GA low, which is tougher in the post season because it’s better teams, but that’s what is going to have to happen for a deep run

    With 12 games left, and Stone not reportedly skating, I just dont know how much we can count on there. Eichel came back last year with about 20 games and it took a while for him to get going (prior to the hand issue). There just isnt a lot of time to get his legs/timing/etc. A morale boost, but can he be a productive spot on a playoff roster with so little time remaining?

  3. Mike Paine

    If the VGK doesn’t score on the PP (and they show absolutely no indication of turning that around), there will be NO hoisting of the trophy. Those are points they can ill afford to lose. The organization fired DeBoer purportedly because of last season’s dismal showing on the PP (excusable to a degree when factoring in all the injuries) and hired Cassidy because of his success with the PP in Boston – doesn’t appear to have worked very well to me!!!!!

  4. JV

    Take away 25 goals from William Karlsson from that first season, which then falls into his current 3rd line production despite being paid top 6 money. How much would that reduce the goals per game from that 1st season? Also the 17-18 team had around 2/3 of the roster with career seasons. The current team has some career years, but mostly from bottom 6 forwards.

  5. Rashaad

    The way their goal scoring suddenly grinds to a halt in the playoffs will always be a mystery to me. Love the deep playoff runs, but it will always bother me that they lost to two inferior teams in Dallas and Montreal.

    • THE hockey GOD

      they also went to finals and semi’s


    • TS

      Rashaad, in my view, a new team like us in the league, facing the seasoned veteran teams in playoff time may have been intimidating to the guys. Veteran teams have been there, done that, faced the pressure B4. Not gonna say fold under that pressure, just held back by it.
      But, hey, they’re still in it!! Hopefully playoff- bound!

    • DocDG

      Yes we did loose to those 2 inferior teams. I blame it on DeBorring’s inability to change his system when he confronts a team with a game plan designed to beat that style of play. Both teams beat us with a defense that stopped our offence cold.
      The persistent lack of special teams that didn’t hurt us too badly in the regular season was also a killer in those 2 series.
      I hope Cassidy is able to adjust for the playoffs but I am worried about this due to his lack of playoff success in Boston.

      • TS

        Doc, agreed. PDB was very inflexible, and unwilling to change to FIX what was broken. Coaching Paralysis. On the flip side, Cassidy is more than willing to change it up, searching for the right mix, the right lines—Solutions. I respect his willingness to change it up, if things aren’t working. He has an open mind how refreshing— an OPEN MIND!!.

  6. knights fan in minny

    it is a new playoff year how do you know they wont score more

    • THE hockey GOD

      they don’t

      it is all conjecture

    • Rashaad

      Knights fan in minny, I don’t know, nobody really knows. It’s just been their history and their power play scares me a bit. If I knew for sure, I would be very rich.

    • Blitz

      Teams play tighter and more physical in the playoffs. PDB teams were fine in the reg season, scoring at will it seemed, but then got bottled up in the post season. I don’t see this team a whole lot different, in fact, still mostly the same players. Power play is still a struggle, lack of shooters is still a problem, still struggle against physical teams. Calgary was a good example, the other day, of more of a playoff hockey style. Not pretty. The addition of Barbashev is a good start and guys more willing to go to the net as of late. PDB was lacking that big time when the playoffs came and greasy dirty goals were needed. Who knows though This team keeps surprising me this year so I won’t write them off just yet.

      I do know I am excited to watch it regardless. The whole sinbin mentality of cup or it doesn’t matter is just plain stupid. This is all about entertainment. Your fav team playing do or die hockey for any amount of rounds is worth the ticket, in my opinion!

      • Rashaad

        Blitz, you said it better than I did. They don’t seem to get a lot of dirty goals and they don’t have a lot of net presence. I think they have overachieved in the regular season. I think Dallas, Colorado and Edmonton are better teams in the west. Knights fan in minny, feel free to call me out if I end up being wrong and I will be ecstatic. All I want is for this team to win a championship. Their secondary scoring after Eichel was something that really scared me but they’ve been proving me wrong since the All-Star break. I’m merely bringing attention to some of the negatives. The Defense group is as good as it gets. I absolutely love their starting six defencemen. I also love that their roster has played so many playoff games and are so experienced because they don’t seem to panic. That might be why they have so many come from behind wins and they generally never really get blown out of games.

  7. Rashaad

    Knights fan in minny, I don’t know, nobody really knows. It’s just been their history and their power play scares me a bit. If I knew for sure, I would be very rich.

  8. knights fan in minny

    game day don’t take the knucks to lightly demko is decent they have 2or 3 real good forwards d is not the best except for hughes time to put the nucks out of there misery except another good game from quickie hope roy is back in

  9. THE hockey GOD

    oldie but goodie

    August 3, 2020

    The national anthems before the Golden Knights’ game Monday were like many in their three-year history. A recording of T-Mobile Arena anthem singer Carnell Johnson even played at Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta.

    But physically, and symbolically, something was different.

    The Knights’ Ryan Reaves and Robin Lehner, along with Dallas Stars players Tyler Seguin and Jason Dickinson, knelt during the American and Canadian anthems before their playoff round-robin game as a sign of protest against racial injustice. The quartet were the first NHL players to kneel before playing a game.

    And some maroons think there are no politics in HOCKEY !!
    As IOLE said
    “most unsophisticated hockey fan base” .

    • Ricardo

      Reeves and Lehner are two assholes, period.

      • knights fan in minny

        i would like to hear you say that to reaves face tough guy

      • TS

        Ricardo, I think Reaves was cocky, a master- chirper, and his physical play kept other teams in check…made others WARY of him. A deterrent to getting bullied on ice. Plus, he was well- liked here, and made Vegas his happy home, until PDB CANNED HIM. But, an Asshole?? Nah, not in my view. He was good for the VGK and Vegas.

  10. VGKnightinArmor

    Who cares what happened 5 YEARS AGO
    Different team different coach different mentality
    Give it up and just enjoy the ride
    Stupid analysis

  11. THE hockey GOD


    Stephen Sorace
    Tue, March 21, 2023 at 11:17 AM PDT
    A Florida man was arrested Friday after he allegedly slapped a woman in the face with a slice of pizza during an argument, authorities said.

    Deputies responded to a residence after receiving a 911 hangup call for a possible domestic disturbance, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office said in an arrest affidavit.

    Deputies spoke to the suspect, 39-year-old Ortelio Lazaro Alfonso, who told them he had an argument with the female victim, the affidavit stated.

    The victim told deputies she had been slapped on the left side of her face with a slice of pizza during an argument after Alfonso became upset when she physically disciplined another individual in the home “on his bottom area,” according to the affidavit.

    Mugshot of Ortelio Lazaro Alfonso
    Ortelio Lazaro Alfonso, 39, was charged with battery after he allegedly slapped a woman in her face with a slice of pizza during an argument in Marion County, Fla., Friday.
    Pizza sauce was found on the front of the victim’s shirt, her shirt collar and the back of her shirt, deputies said. She also had “remnants of pizza” in her hair and around her ear.

    The victim let deputies look inside the home, where they found pizza sauce on the walls and ceiling of the kitchen area, the affidavit said.

    Sliced Pizza
    Deputies said pizza sauce was found on the victim’s shirt, in her hair and around her ear.
    Alfonso was detained and told deputies he had been in an argument with the victim.

    When deputies asked Alfonso if he had struck the victim in her face with a slice of pizza, he said he threw the pizza slice and that it hit her in the face, according to the document.

    “The defendant advised he did not physically strike the victim with his hands, just with the pizza,” deputies wrote in the affidavit.

    Alfonso was arrested on a battery charge and booked in the Marion County Jail. He was later released on his own recognizance.

  12. Vic

    Reaves lost many fans with the kneeling. He makes millions playing a game, sells overpriced beer and decides to kneel to make a misguided point. When he lived in Vegas, I suggested if he had a criminal in his home and LV Metro was called, the officers should kneel on his front lawn. That said, his toughness on the ice remains a gaping hole for the VGK. Lehner we know has issues.

    • THE hockey GOD

      that would have made front page news.

      Thank God, Sheriff Joe is now in charge of state !

  13. Jojo419

    We’re having problems on our own division, beating what should be inferior teams. I get the “on any given Sunday” but it isn’t a fluke, it’s a serious issue. But . ALMOST TO THE POINT OF DOMINATING the Eastern Conference. In past years, the Central used to give us food but, save for Dallas, we seen to have accomplished that. Do we play down to our competition?? If so, this needs to stop. .

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