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Bruins get revenge on VGK, beat Knights 3-1

One thing is certain about the Vegas Golden Knights, goals are a premium at home and health is becoming a growing concern.

The Golden Knights found themselves on the wrong end of a 3-1 score as the Boston Bruins won a Sunday, Dec. 11 battle from The Fortress. Six days earlier, it was Vegas who beat Boston in a shootout 4-3 at the TD Garden

“Compete level was high from start to finish,” head coach Bruce Cassidy said. “We were ready to play. When you get in those types of games with a team as good as Boston and the depth they have, the margins become slimmer when you’re missing some of your guys that are difference makers.”

Vegas lost defenseman Zach Whitecloud to a lower-body injury in the second period. That was the third defenseman out of the Vegas lineup as Shea Theodore and Alex Pietrangelo both missed Sunday’s game.

Cassidy did not have any update on Whitecloud but did say that it did not look good from the bench.

If Whitecloud is unavailable to go for Tuesday’s game, expect to see a defenseman from the Henderson Silver Knights called up to fill in.

While he is not a defenseman, the top goal scorer for Vegas, center Jack Eichel was also held out of this one, meaning Vegas was down their two top defenseman and their top goal scorer before the puck even dropped on Sunday.

Pietrangelo is currently dealing with a personal matter that has kept him out the last seven games while Theodore and Eichel are both recovering from injuries.

The Golden Knights will hit the road for a pair of games this week as they will be in Winnipeg on Tuesday for a Western Conference showdown with the Winnipeg Jets. Puck drop is set for 5 p.m.

The loss puts Vegas at 20-9-1 on the year with 41 points in the Pacific Division. VGK holds a six-point lead over Seattle in the division. This is also the fourth home loss in the last five home games for the Knights.

Vegas has scored a total of seven goals in its last five home games. If one thing is becoming clearer as we progress through the season, it’s that the Knights are a far better road team than home team.

In 15 road games this season, Vegas has scored 62 goals, giving them an average of 4.13 goals a game. In the same amount of home games, Vegas only has 36 goals, giving them an average of 2.4 goals scored per game at home.

The Knights are also 12-2-1 on the road compared to 8-7-0 at home.

Left-wing Jake DeBrusk and center/right-wing Charlie Coyle were the difference makers in the game as they scored the go-ahead and insurance goals for the Bruins in the third period. DeBrusk’s goal came less than three minutes into the period and Coyle’s goal came just shy of the halfway point of the third.

“Their second goal – we don’t put a puck to the net,” Cassidy said. “We try to make a play that isn’t there, we lose a race in a battle, we lose another one and we don’t really give our goalie a chance to make a save on a two-on-one. Now all of a sudden you have a lot of life in a good team.”

Boston now holds the best record and the most points in the NHL as they improve to 22-4-1 with 45 points in the Atlantic Division, a division they now lead by three points over Toronto.

Bruins’ goaltender Linus Ullmark showed Sunday why he has been one of the best goalies in the NHL. He improved his record to 16-1-0 on the year and saved 30 shots on 31 shots faced for a final save percentage of .968.

He is also one of two goalies to have a goal allowed average of less than two. The other goaltender this applies to is Toronto’s Ilya Samsonov.

Vegas goalie Logan Thompson finished his evening with 24 saves on 27 shots faced for a final save percentage of .889. This is the second straight game for Thompson with a save percentage of less than .900.

It was a quick start for the home team as the Captain, Mark Stone, opened the scoring for the home team less than four minutes into the contest. Center Chandler Stephenson fed Stone in the slot and Stone handled the rest from there.

Stone’s goal was the lone goal on either side in the first period and it is also worth mentioning that Stone’s goal was a power play goal, an area that Vegas has been known to struggle in historically.

The Vegas power play would not score again after this goal and went 1-for-4 on the man advantage. This was also the lone goal that Vegas scored all night, leaving them scoreless for the final 55:57 of the game.

Boston came out firing on all cylinders to start the second period as they got eight straight shots on goal before Vegas found their first of the period. One of those Boston SOG found the back of the net when center Patrice Bergeron got to the slot and tied the game at one.


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