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Vegas Golden Knights: Week 4 Recap

The Vegas Golden Knights started week 4 of the NHL season on the road.  They started in Toronto, then Ottawa and Montreal before closing out the week and road trip in Detroit. This week saw mixed results as Vegas won two out of four games. The Vegas Golden Knights also traded for Jack Eichel on Thursday, November 4.

The games

Tuesday, Nov. 4, Toronto Maple Leafs

The Vegas Golden Knights kicked off their road trip in Toronto by taking on the Maple Leafs on Tuesday, November 2. This matchup saw the Maple leafs shut out the Golden Knights 4-0. This game was a pretty good example of all the things this Vegas team is struggling with in general.  Without consistent point producers like Max Pacioretty, Mark Stone and William Karlsson, the team has been forced to depend on depth goal-scoring. This dependence is problematic as a majority of the team’s forward depth are still unfamiliar with each other and are still not used to Vegas’ system.

Vegas’ defense was also completely overwhelmed by Toronto’s star players. Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner and William Nylander all had at least two points by the end of the game.

Thursday, Nov. 4, Ottawa Senators

After the brutal defeat in Toronto, the Golden Knights traveled to Canada’s capital to take on the Ottawa Senators. William Carrier scored the first goal of the game in the second period.  Brett Howden followed suit, tallying his first as a Golden Knight. Less than two minutes after Howden’s goal, Jonathan Marchessault scored for his third goal of the season.

Robin Lehner kept the Senators off the scoreboard for a majority of the game and was one of the main reasons Vegas was winning. Despite this, Brady Tkachuk scored for Ottawa before the end of the second, making it a 3-1 heading into the third period.

The third period went scoreless until the last six minutes in which Alex Pietrangelo scored on a wrist shot from the point.  Marchessault later scored on the empty net for his second of the game, and helping to secure Vegas’  5-1 win.

This was overall a much better game for the Golden Knights, they played as if the embarrassment in Toronto was too much for them to bear.

Saturday, Nov. 6, Montreal Canadiens

Vegas continued their road trip by heading to Montreal to take on the Canadiens in the first half of a back-to-back. This was a game that saw many oddities, including the worst first period of any game in Vegas Golden Knights history. The first period ended 2-0 for the Montreal Canadiens though what made this period so bad was that, the shot total was 20-1 for Montreal. It was without a doubt the worst first period in Golden Knights history.

When the second period began, many expected more or less a continuation of the first. However, in the first period, Vegas’ horrendous power play was given an opportunity.  Alex Pietrangelo scored the first power-play goal of the season with a one-timer, ending Vegas’ drought. Jonathan Marchessault scored about halfway through the period to tie the game up.  Just two minutes after this, Dylan Coghlan scored while on the powerplay, giving Vegas the 3-2 lead. Coghlan’s goal came on Vegas’ seventh shot of the game.

The third period saw the Golden Knights hold the Montreal Canadiens off the scoreboard entirely. Chandler Stephenson and Brayden McNabb each tallied empty-net goals to finish the game 5-2 for Vegas.

Despite having the worst start to a game any team could possibly have, the Golden Knights played great second and third periods. Lehner was once again fantastic in net, saving 36 out of 38, earning himself a SV% of .947.

Sunday, Nov. 7, Detroit Redwings

After prior good results, the Vegas Golden Knights traveled back across the border to take on the Detroit Redwings.

Despite a strong start, with Nic Roy scoring the first goal of the game, Vegas didn’t maintain the lead for long. After starting in net for Vegas, Laurent Brossoit, gave up a power-play goal on Detroit’s third shot of the game. Brossoit gave up another power-play goal on Detroit’s fourth shot of the game. Detroit then scored on their seventh shot before the first period ended, giving them the 3-1 lead.

The second period is when many started to notice just how tired the Golden Knights looked. They gave up another goal 10 minutes into the second, giving Detroit the 4-1 lead.

In the third period, Marchessault scored, making it a 4-2 game. That was the last goal Vegas would score in the game, with Detroit finding the empty net to end the game 5-2.

Vegas’ new superstar

The other big news this week was Vegas’ acquisition of Jack Eichel for Alex Tuch, Peyton Krebs and draft picks. The former captain of the Buffalo Sabres arrived in Vegas soon after the trade getting a VGK welcome at his hotel. After he concludes his obligations during his stay in Las Vegas, he said that he is expecting to receive his artificial disk replacement surgery on Friday, November 12. His expected recovery time has been stated as being anywhere in the range of 3-6 months. Though he has stated, several times, his desire to represent the United States in the upcoming Olympic games, only time will tell whether he is able to.

 

Featured image courtesy of the Jared Book/SBnation

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