The last time the Vegas Golden Knights took on the Chicago Blackhawks, it was an October 24 contest ending in a 4-2 win for the good guys. Despite six goals in regulation, this game was all about the Golden Knights’ defense as all six of Vegas’ blueliners recorded one assist and carried Vegas to a fourth consecutive win.
The Golden Knights enter tonight sitting first place in the Pacific Division and Western Conference standings with a record of 27-10-2, whereas the Blackhawks are currently sixth place in the Central Division with a record of 19-14-6.
Vegas is coming off a tough 2-1 loss to the St. Louis Blues last night, which ended an eight-game winning streak. Paul Stastny scored a bizarre goal with 14 minutes remaining in the third period to put the Blues on top, which would eventually turn out to be the game winner.
The Golden Knights have now recorded a point in 13 out of their last 14 games and have scored a total of 49 goals along that stretch while only giving up 27 goals.
The Blackhawks, much unlike the Golden Knights, are in a huge slump right now, winning only two out of their last six games and giving up 19 goals during that span.
Here’s what to look for in this game:
Can the Golden Knights rebound from a tough loss?
The Golden Knights have not been used to losing these past couple weeks, in fact the last time Vegas actually lost a game in regulation was all the way back on December 1 against the Winnipeg Jets in a 7-4 beatdown.
The Golden Knights will look to rebound against a struggling Blackhawks team and get back in the win column. In order to do so, Jonathan Toews and Kane will have to be kept off the scoresheet and Vegas will need to hope their offense can supply more than one goal and create more quality chances against 32-year-old rookie goaltender Jeff Glass.
Will the Golden Knights find an answer for their struggling power play?
Amongst the Golden Knights’ recent success, one thing has been lost and that is the awful power play. Currently scoring one goal in their last 14 opportunities, the Golden Knights will need to fix these struggles if they want to continue getting in the win column and hopefully build some more momentum heading into the All-Star break.
The Golden Knights went from having one of the top power plays in the league to falling all the way back to 18th spot because of the recent issues. Bad zone entries, not enough shooting and no net-front presence are a few of the reasons this power play is struggling and a change is needed to avoid having another month of December in which the team went just 6-for-44 on the man-advantage.
How to watch
Time: 5:30 p.m. PT
TV: AT&T SportsNet Rocky Mountain, NHL.TV
Radio: Fox Sports 98.9 FM/1340 AM