VGK endures first regulation loss at home despite Fleury’s gem
The Vegas Golden Knights endured their first regulation loss at home, bringing a halt to their eight game win streak at home.
The Anaheim Ducks beat the Knights, 1-0, Thursday, Feb 11 at T-Mobile Arena. Vegas leads the season series, 3-1.
Goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury had 27 saves and a .964 save percentage but Anaheim goaltender John Gibson earned the shutout with 21 saves.
The Knights (8-2-1) turn their attention to a makeup contest against the San Jose Sharks, Saturday, Feb 13, from the SAP Center at 12:30 p.m.
The Knights are now second in the west division with 17 points, trailing the St. Louis Blues by one point.
“I think we just treat it the same way, especially with the rivalry that we have with them,” center Cody Glass said about the game against the Sharks. “We go into it with the same mindset that we want to win.”
It will be DeBoer’s first time back to San Jose since replacing Gerard Gallant, the first and only other head coach of the Golden Knights, in Jan of 2020.
DeBoer went 198-129-34 as the head coach of the San Jose Sharks head coach of five years.
Vegas went 3-1 against the Sharks in 2019-2020.
VGK warmed up in special-edition Chinese New Year jerseys that were auctioned off online during the first two periods of the game. A new gold helmet was also debuted during the game by the Golden Knights.
It was unknown whether the Vegas-Anaheim game would take place after left-wing Thomas Nosek was pulled after the second period in the first game of the series against the Ducks, Feb 9, due to a positive Covid-19 test result.
“If you see the protocols that we have in place, it’s a small book,” head coach Pete DeBoer said. “At our level, we just hand it off to the medical experts and follow directions.”
Goaltender Robin Lehner was supposed to play for the Knights but didn’t dress due to an upper body tweek during their morning skate.
Oscar Dansk was the backup goaltender to Marc-Andre Fleury Thursday night for Vegas.
“[It’s] unfortunate to waste an effort like that,” DeBoer said about Fleury. “He was our best player. Considering the circumstances, he got the call late tonight and I know the guys feel they let him down a little bit.”
There were more penalties than goals overall. The Knights had three penalties, while the Ducks had two.
Vegas had two power play opportunities in the game, one in the first period and one in the second.
Center Jonathan Marchessault had a holding penalty in the second period, giving Anaheim a two-minute power play, as well as, a 10-minute penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct.
It wasn’t until the third period, Anaheim’s left-wing Max Comtois scored the winning goal around the 12-minute mark.