The West Coast Flexes it’s Muscles, as the Knights Dominate the Lightning

By on January 19, 2018

The top two teams in the NHL  in their respective conferences faced off in Tampa on Thursday night, and just fifty-six seconds in  the Western Conference Knights took the lead.  And yes, that foreshadowed the game to follow.

The odds were stacked against the Lightning before the puck even hit the ice, as Rick “Rocket” Sassone says “rest is death” with the Lightning coming off 5 days break. Tonight was also a “Ceremony game” as former Lightning All-Stars were honored during the ppre-game face-off.  Adding insult to injury, #77 Victor Hedman was out of the line up with a lower body injury.

First blood was drawn by the Vegas Golden Knights when James Neal ripped one past the Lightning defense and Andrei Vaslilevskiy just :56 into the first period. It was early and often that the Knights just seemed to be skating blades up over the Lightning.

Nate Schmidt scored the second goal for the Knights at 16:03 as they were working the rested Lightning over as Schmidt’s biscuit in the basket ended up being the eventual game winner.

A sluggish first period by the Tampa Bay forwards and with Marc-Andre Fleury stopping 12 Lightning shots, the Knights appeared to be in total control leading 2-0 into the first break.

The first penalty of the game didn’t come until 10 minutes into the second period as the Lightning got their first chance with the man advantage and they did not waste it.  Ondrej Palat scored with the duo of Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov in on the the helpers.  Stamkos (36) and Kucherov (34) have combined for an amazing 70 assists the week prior to the three on three exhibition break (All-Star Game).  The Lightning cut the lead in half but that is the closest the Bolts would get.

At 17:43 of the second period, the Knights David Perron gave the Knights  the two goal lead back with assists from Erik Haula and Shea Theodore. Perron pulled off a beautiful toe-drag around Anton Strahlman and blasted a wrister past the Andrei Vasilevsky

At the start of the third and the Knights holding a 3-1 lead, Lightning fans are ok, you know a two goal lead is the worst lead in hockey, great!  Well cancel the comeback, no Miracle on Channelside tonight, as the Knights put one in just 18 seconds into the third.   William Karlsson with the State Farm insurance goal and it seemed as if the Lightning gave up from there. Every time the Lightning tried to put on an offensive comeback, the Golden Knights instilled their will and size and deflated the Lightning’s effort and the home crowd with it.

The Knights have now swept the two game home and home series over the Lightning. That’s an 8 point swing for the President’s Cup with the Knights only two points behind the Lightning with Vegas having a game in hand. The Knights are definitely not your father’s expansion team and are a force to reckon with in this years NHL.

Next up for the Bolts, a roadie up in Minnesota to take on the Wild on Saturday.

 

VGS 2 1 1 4
TB 0 1 0 1

Player Summary

Vegas Golden Knights

Time On Ice Faceoffs
Player G A +/- SOG MS BS PN PIM HT TK GV SHF TOT PP SH EV FW FL %
P. Bellemare RW 0 0 0 1 1 0 1 2 0 1 0 17 13:29 0:00 2:22 11:07 1 5 16.7
R. Carpenter C 0 0 0 4 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 15 11:29 0:00 1:47 9:42 1 2 33.3
W. Carrier LW 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 0 0 13 10:14 0:00 0:00 10:14 0 0 00.0
C. Eakin C 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 16 15:18 0:00 1:32 13:46 6 11 35.3
D. Engelland D 0 2 3 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 26 17:58 0:00 3:41 14:17 0 0 00.0
E. Haula LW 0 1 3 3 2 0 0 0 1 0 0 17 17:10 1:57 0:24 14:49 7 7 50.0
B. Hunt D 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 21 21:17 1:57 0:00 19:20 0 0 00.0
W. Karlsson C 1 0 1 2 0 0 2 4 0 1 0 19 16:56 2:03 0:42 14:11 3 5 37.5
O. Lindberg C 0 0 0 1 1 1 1 2 0 0 0 15 13:16 0:00 1:24 11:52 0 0 00.0
J. Marchessault C 0 1 1 2 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 16 15:01 2:03 0:00 12:58 5 7 41.7
B. McNabb D 0 1 1 2 1 3 0 0 3 0 0 27 22:11 0:00 3:58 18:13 0 0 00.0
C. Miller D 0 0 0 1 2 0 0 0 2 0 0 22 21:09 1:57 0:41 18:31 0 0 00.0
J. Neal LW 1 0 3 5 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 17 15:19 1:57 0:00 13:22 0 0 00.0
T. Nosek C 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0:00 0:00 0:00 0:00 0 0 00.0
D. Perron LW 1 1 3 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 17 15:26 1:57 0:00 13:29 5 2 71.4
N. Schmidt D 1 0 1 2 1 1 0 0 0 0 2 26 19:40 0:00 1:30 18:10 0 0 00.0
R. Smith RW 0 0 1 3 3 0 0 0 0 2 1 19 16:02 2:03 1:20 12:39 0 0 00.0
S. Theodore D 0 1 3 2 0 2 0 0 0 0 1 24 15:38 2:03 0:00 13:35 0 0 00.0
A. Tuch RW 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 2 1 1 0 16 17:13 2:03 0:00 15:10 0 0 00.0

Vegas Golden Knights Scratches

Player Detail
J. Garrison Scratched
B. Leipsic Scratched

Tampa Bay Lightning

Time On Ice Faceoffs
Player G A +/- SOG MS BS PN PIM HT TK GV SHF TOT PP SH EV FW FL %
R. Callahan RW 0 0 -1 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 18 13:34 0:24 1:45 11:25 0 0 00.0
B. Coburn D 0 0 0 2 1 1 0 0 0 0 1 24 19:19 0:00 2:11 17:08 0 0 00.0
C. Conacher LW 0 0 0 0 1 2 0 0 1 0 1 17 12:12 0:00 0:00 12:12 0 0 00.0
J. Dotchin D 0 0 0 1 0 2 2 4 5 0 1 23 20:24 0:24 0:00 20:00 0 0 00.0
D. Girardi D 0 0 -2 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 20 15:53 0:00 2:03 13:50 0 0 00.0
Y. Gourde LW 0 0 0 2 0 1 1 2 5 0 1 20 15:03 1:44 0:35 12:44 3 3 50.0
T. Johnson C 0 0 0 4 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 23 17:21 1:01 1:39 14:41 2 3 40.0
A. Killorn C 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 19 14:31 1:44 1:20 11:27 0 0 00.0
S. Koekkoek D 0 0 -2 1 0 1 0 0 3 0 0 23 18:31 0:24 1:49 16:18 0 0 00.0
N. Kucherov RW 0 1 -3 4 2 0 0 0 0 0 1 18 16:55 3:30 0:00 13:25 0 0 00.0
C. Kunitz LW 0 0 -2 5 0 1 0 0 3 0 0 17 11:19 0:24 0:00 10:55 1 1 50.0
V. Namestnikov C 0 0 -2 2 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 14 12:04 1:44 0:00 10:20 6 4 60.0
O. Palat LW 1 0 0 1 1 1 0 0 1 2 2 24 19:42 2:47 0:36 16:19 0 0 00.0
C. Paquette C 0 0 -1 2 0 1 1 2 4 0 0 17 11:36 0:24 0:19 10:53 7 7 50.0
B. Point C 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 25 19:38 2:47 1:46 15:05 12 5 70.6
M. Sergachev D 0 0 -2 0 1 3 0 0 1 0 3 24 21:06 3:05 0:00 18:01 0 0 00.0
S. Stamkos C 0 1 -3 3 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 18 16:30 2:47 0:00 13:43 8 5 61.5
A. Stralman D 0 0 -2 0 0 1 0 0 3 1 1 24 20:22 1:26 1:57 16:59 0 0 00.0

Tampa Bay Lightning Scratches

Player Detail
A. Sustr Scratched
V. Hedman Scratched

Goaltending Summary

Vegas Golden Knights Goaltending

Player SA GA Saves SV% TOI PIM
M. Fleury 29 1 28 .966 60:00 0

Tampa Bay Lightning Goaltending

Player SA GA Saves SV% TOI PIM
A. Vasilevskiy 30 4 26 .867 60:00 0
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