Turns out the short turnaround for the Vegas Golden Knights versus the week off the Colorado Avalanche enjoyed did not matter; the Knights suffered a 7-1 punch to the mouth in game one of the second round of the 2021 NHL Playoffs to the Colorado Avalanche.
Goaltender Robin Lehner got the start for Vegas and its very likely it will be his last of the postseason as the veteran conceded seven goals although his team’s defense did him no favors allowing numerous breakaways and shots on goal.
To make matters worse, Knights tough guy Ryan Reaves hurt Vegas after receiving a match penalty for trying to injure another player.
The NHL would later suspend Reaves for two games for the act.
Vegas would finish with 44 penalty minutes to Colorado’s 30.
Despite the ugly series start, Vegas has a chance to right the ship Wednesday, June 2 for game two.
“Playoffs are about having short memories and getting ready for the next one," Vegas coach Pete DeBoer told ESPN. "The bottom line was we weren’t good enough tonight. They were very good.”
DeBoer was unable to provide an update on hero Mattias Janmark, who scored his first career hat trick in game seven against the Minnesota Wild to lift Vegas.
Janmark exited the game early after taking a blindsided shot to the upper-chest.
The play sparked most of the little fight Vegas had all game.
Captain Mark Stone didn’t like the dirty play.
“Defenseless player. It’s a blindside interference," Stone told ESPN. “Obviously didn’t like the hit."
Despite the route, Colorado and Vegas matched up evenly in the regular season splitting the series.
Both sides know what’s at stake as game two looms.
For the Knights, expect a better all-around effort and for stalwart goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury to return to the net.
Puck drop is 7:00 p.m.