The Vegas Golden Knights sit alone in first place among Pacific Division teams in the National Hockey League after winning all three scheduled games during Thanksgiving Week. With a 15-6-1 record overall, Vegas leads Los Angeles by two points with two games in hand, and the Golden Knights are ahead of third-place Calgary by four points with one game in hand.
It's very early in the season still, but Vegas has the all-time expansion records for points percentage (.542, by the 1925 Pittsburgh Pirates), most wins (33, set by both the 1993 Anaheim Ducks and the 1993 Florida Panthers, in 84-game seasons) and most points (83, by the 1993 Panthers) in sight already, and that's something the Golden Knights organization as a whole needs to be very proud of right now.
What Happened Last Week?
As mentioned, Vegas won all three of its games last week: 4-2 over the Ducks in Anaheim on Wednesday, 5-4 in overtime against the San Jose Sharks Friday afternoon at T-Mobile Arena, and 4-2 over the Arizona Coyotes on the road Saturday night. By winning three games in four days, the Golden Knights once again demonstrated how their depth and flexible style of play can handle different opponents in short succession.
1. G Malcolm Subban: The team welcomed Subban back from injury last week, and he rewarded his teammates for their support by registering wins against San Jose in relief and against Arizona as the starter. Overall, Subban gave up just two goals in over 81 minutes of ice time while making 27 saves on 29 shots from the opponents. Not a bad way to come back from a lower-body injury.
2. C Jon Marchessault: No. 81 had quite the week, starting off with a goal and two assists against the Ducks. He followed it up with the same effort against San Jose, before ending the week with another exact scoring effort against Arizona. Add it up, and it was a three-goal, six-assist week for Marchessault. He scored 51 points for Florida last season, and now he has 21 points in just 19 games this season with Vegas.
3. C William Karlsson: Just 25 years old, Karlsson had a career-high 25 points last year for Columbus. He already has 22 points in 22 games this season after a six-point week that featured four more goals and two assists. He's done this without getting pinged for a single penalty minute this year. Karlsson is going to be a Top 10 vote getter for the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy.
Highlight of the Week
Marchessault's game-winning goal in overtime against San Jose at T-Mobile was an electric moment, for several reasons. The Sharks had overcome a 4-1 deficit rather quickly in the latter stages of the second period, and starting goaltender Maxime Lagace had left the game with illness. The defense had clamped down, allowing San Jose just three shots on goal in the third period and overtime combined. Marchessault really wanted the puck in this sequence, as you can see him pounding his stick on the ice to get his teammates' attention—and then he delivered.
What's Next for the Golden Knights?
It's a four-game week for Vegas coming up, with with two road games on back-to-back nights in the middle. On Tuesday, the Dallas Stars (12-10-1) come to Sin City, and then the Golden Knights play Thursday in Minnesota (11-9-3) and Friday in Winnipeg (14-6-3). The team returns to Vegas to host the Coyotes (6-17-3) next Sunday as the tough week comes to an end.
The Golden Knights have won eight straight games at home, so it's tough to pick against them on Tuesday or Sunday. We won't. Getting a split on the road would be a positive under the circumstances, so a three-win week should be the realistic goal for Vegas over the next seven days.
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