Wed, 29 Nov 2023

Knights, in mini-slump, take on Canucks

Field Level Media
26 Nov 2022, 23:55 GMT+10

Considering their performance in a 4-2 loss to Seattle on Friday, the timing for just their second back-to-back of the season probably couldn't be better for the Vegas Golden Knights.

The Western Conference leaders in points (33) and wins (16) will get back at it on Saturday night in Las Vegas when they face the Vancouver Canucks for the second time in six days.

Vegas suffered its fourth loss in seven games and the third in its last five home games against Seattle. The Kraken jumped to a 2-0 lead in the first eight minutes, but the Golden Knights rallied to tie the score later in the period on goals by Nicolas Roy and Phil Kessel.

Seattle then took control with goals by Andre Burakovsky and Jordan Eberle in the second period, and Philipp Grubauer, who made 20 saves, blanked Vegas over the final two periods to give the Kraken their first win in franchise history over the Golden Knights.

"Yeah, we play another divisional opponent tomorrow," Vegas center Jack Eichel said. "Good chance for us to put this one behind us and find a way to get two points and win a game. Obviously wasn't our best game tonight, but we get to play tomorrow. That's the important part now."

Knights coach Bruce Cassidy took the blame for his team's slow start and lackluster performance.

"They were quicker than us; they won a lot more races," Cassidy said. "One-on-one battles, they executed better than us. They were just the better team, I think. Let's call it what is. From start to finish they outplayed us.

"We can look at different areas and why and what, but we weren't ready to play, and that always falls on the coach. I've got to get the guys ready to play. We didn't come out of the gate ready to play."

Vegas didn't have time to sit and dwell on the loss with a contest against Vancouver less than 24 hours later.

"We're right back at it tomorrow," Cassidy said. "That can be good or bad, right? You can correct, amend, whatever word you want to use. We'll see how that works out. We didn't bring the juice tonight."

Vegas rallied from a 4-2 deficit in the middle of the third period to defeat the Canucks 5-4 in Vancouver on Monday on a Alex Pietrangelo goal with 5:46 remaining. William Carrier scored two goals and Mark Stone added a goal and an assist in the comeback.

The Canucks bounced back to defeat defending Stanley Cup champion Colorado 4-3 on Wednesday in Denver. Ethan Bear scored on a slap shot just inside the blue line with eight minutes to go to break a 3-3 tie and give Vancouver its third victory in its last four games.

"We never quit," Canucks coach Bruce Boudreau said. "We took a lot of penalties against a great power play, and even when we got down, we never quit. We were pretty determined to do that, and that's the great sign of a team. It's a great sign of a lot of players that they never quit, and they want to keep going."

--Field Level Media

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