For the fourth time in five games, the Vegas Golden Knights found themselves on the losing end of a game after losing to the Toronto Maple Leafs by a score of 4-3 in a shootout Tuesday, Jan. 11.
Now two of these losses did come in either overtime or a shootout which helps them in the standings a little bit but at the end of the day, this team has only collected four out of a possible ten points these past five games.
Vegas head coach and now newly named Pacific All-Star team coach Pete Deboer said after the game that while he wasn’t thrilled with how his team played in the first period, he “loved the last 40+ minutes of our game.”
Vegas remains the Pacific Division leader with 48 points while Toronto stays firmly in third spot of the Atlantic Division with 49 points.
The Golden Knights have nearly a week off before their next game which takes place on Monday, Jan. 17 against the Pittsburgh Penguins inside T-Mobile Arena.
The game can be seen on AT&T Sportsnet in Las Vegas and fans are encouraged to find ticket information at AXS.com.
You start to look at how these games were lost and you could point out the fact that in three of the past five games, the Golden Knights have given up three or more goals which has been a growing problem for the team all season.
You might even point to the fact that this team has been dealing with injuries and Covid protocols all season and hasn’t really been able to get to a full-strength roster.
At the end of the day though, professional sports is results driven business as we all know and the results haven’t been where they need to be for this team to be a serious contender for the Stanley Cup, a goal that has been lingering since the team reached the Stanley Cup Final in their first season of existence.
When looking at this game, a lot of the same characteristics the Knights have shown all season stood out. For starters, goalie Robin Lehner gave up three goals in the first two periods of the game.
When you look at his averages for the season, this is actually right on par with his season average of 2.9 goals allowed per game.
Next, Vegas needed a big third period to get themselves back into the game. At the second intermission, Vegas trailed 3-1. It’s no secret that Vegas is statistically one of the best third period teams in the league and they showcased that again Tuesday night as they got goals from center William Karlsson and defenseman Alex Pietrangelo to tie the game at 3 and send the game to overtime.
With no score in overtime, it came down to a shootout where Leafs forward William Nylander put home a game-winning goal to seal a 4-3 victory for Toronto.
Vegas goalie Robin Lehner finished the night with 15 saves on 18 attempts for a save percentage of .833 giving up a goal every six shots on average in this game.