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The Knightly Recap: Week 6 Part 1

The Knightly Recap

Last week on the Knightly Recap, the Vegas Golden Knights faced all three California teams winning three of four games played. Also, last week’s Knightly Recap was broken down into three parts. Click on any of the links to read last week’s Knightly Recap trilogy: Part 1. Part 2. Part 3.

Winning those games helped the Golden Knights go into this tough week against one of the division’s best teams, the Colorado Avalanche. The Avalanche are coming off their COVID-19 hiatus after three of their players tested positive for the virus including their captain Gabriel Landeskog.

This week, the Golden Knights will face the Avalanche in four straight games. The first three games are scheduled for this week. But, their third meeting this season will be a special and memorable one for both teams. Both teams were selected to play in the Bridgestone NHL Outdoors at Lake Tahoe this season. This game marks the first outdoor game for the Golden Knights in franchise history.

With all this said, welcome to week six of the Knightly Recap.

Feb. 14 vs. Colorado Avalanche

Defense Was the Name of This Game

This game was undoubtedly one of the most anticipated matchups in the NHL this season. And there was certainly no love shown from both teams on this Valentine’s Day matchup. Both teams played defensively from the start and didn’t allow any of them to sustain momentum for the majority of a period. 

The Avalanche came into this game with a similar defensive approach that the San Jose Sharks put on in their matchup against the Golden Knights. And that was putting pressure on the Golden Knights to possibly force turnovers and score in their defensive zone. However, the Golden Knights kept finding ways to break out of their D-zone and into their offensive zone. But the same could be said about the Avalanche as well.

Also, both teams would always crash the net and fight for the loose puck on either the low slot or top of the goaltender’s blue crease. It was amazing to see two powerhouses battle intensely to either score or prevent the other team from scoring.

Pacioretty Finds the Back of the Net Once Again

It’s been a while since Golden Knights forward Max Pacioretty scored a goal in a game. His last goal he scored was against the St. Louis Blues on Jan. 26 before the Golden Knights went into quarantine due to a COVID-19 outbreak within the organization. Pacioretty scored in the second period this game going short side, under Avalanche’s goaltender Philipp Grubauer’s glove hand. Also, Pacioretty leads the team with seven goals so far this season.

Fleury: A Vezina Favorite

Golden Knights goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury has been the team’s best player by far at this point of the season. Fleury continues to show why he’s in the Vezina Trophy conversation as the league’s best goaltender. Also, Fleury recorded his second shutout this season with a 1-0 win for the Golden Knights. The Golden Knights goaltender looks like he’s found the fountain of youth as multiple NBCSN commentators have stated. And what a time to do so with the Golden Knights having to play the Avalanche three more teams in this next week and a half.

Feb. 16 vs. Colorado Avalanche

NATHAN! MAAAAAAAACKINNON!

Avalanche forward Nathan MacKinnon found himself in the scoring column once again after not getting anything going during the last game. In fact, MacKinnon didn’t have that many chances in this game as well. The Golden Knights have found a way to contain MacKinnon’s ability to go on a scoring outbreak. However, MacKinnon scored in this game during the first period and got his third goal this season. MacKinnon had a few more scoring chances throughout this game than he did last game. If the Golden Knights don’t continue to block or bother MacKinnon’s scoring chances, then it’s just a matter of time when MacKinnon will have a big scoring game.

There Was A Fight But Ryan Reaves Wasn’t Involved

During the first period, Golden Knights rookie Keegan Kolesar and Avalanche defenseman Dennis Gilbert dropped the gloves and fought. Kolesar isn’t a stranger to fighting as that’s a part of his game. When Kolesar was called onto the Golden Knights roster, many compared his game to forward Ryan Reaves. They’re both strong and energizers for their respective forward lines.

Three Penalties? Penalty Kill Units Didn’t Budge

The Golden Knights committed three penalties in just the first period alone. And the Avalanche are one of the top three power play teams in the league. On paper, the Avalanche should score on at least one of their three power plays. 

But the Golden Knights weren’t phased as they were able to kill off all three Avalanche power plays. Which, to say the least, is impressive. The Golden Knights are one of the top four penalty killing teams in the league. The reigning Stanley Cup champions, Tampa Bay Lightning, are tied at third with the Golden Knights with an 85.7% PK.

Pacioretty Find the Back of the Net Once Again… Again

Pacioretty now has scored a goal in back to back games and his eighth goal of the season. He scored during the second period again from nearly the same spot from last game. But this time his goal came on a power play. However, Avalanche forward Brandon Saad scored 1:03 to regain his team’s lead after Pacioretty tied the game at one. With Pacioretty’s two goal streak, could he be the goal scorer from the beginning of the season? Maybe.

Marchessault Marches and Screams For a Goal

Golden Knights forward Jonathan Marchessault scored his fifth goal of the season after not having scored a goal in two games. Marchessault’s last two goals came when he crashed the net and scored on the second chance. He may be a small player on the ice but he can find his way towards the net and battle for the loose puck. If Marchessault can find himself on a scoring streak, then he’s just one more player opponents have to worry about on the defensive end.

Late Goal Heroics from Kadri… Again

The game was tied 2-2 during the third period but that would change with 41 seconds left of the period. Avalanche forward Nazem Kadri scored another late game winning goal to give his team a 3-2 lead. The Avalanche won a crucial face off in their O-Zone and defenseman Paul Byram shot the puck towards the net and Fleury made the save. Both teams were battling for the puck and Kadri crashed the net and scored top shelf in the net.

Fleury. That’s It.

Besides allowing three goals in this game, Fleury continues to show poise protecting the net. There are goals that he would certainly like back. But those goals came off of blown defensive coverage from the Golden Knights or Golden Knights turnovers. When Kadri scored the GWG, Fleury showed disappointment for himself. And he might use this game as motivation for the big outdoor game this Saturday.

Ready For Another Multiple Part Knightly Recap?

This month is one of the busiest for the Golden Knights this season. And that’s to be expected with this season being shortened to 56 games. So, for the second week in a row, the Knightly Recap will be broken down into multiple parts. How many parts is not determined yet. It all depends on what happens on and off the ice.

Until then, the next part will cover the last game of the week for the Golden Knights. That game is, of course, the Bridgestone NHL Outdoors at Lake Tahoe game against the Avalanche. Also, the Avalanche has been the toughest opponent for the Golden Knights this season.

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1 comment

The Game Haus | The Knightly Recap: Week 7 | NHL March 1, 2021 at 8:09 am

[…] Outdoors at Lake Tahoe match. Last week’s Knightly Recap was also broken down into two parts: Part 1. Part […]

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