With the entire Vegas Golden Knights coaching staff in quarantine because of COVID-19 protocols and GM Kelly McCrimmon behind the bench, the team still managed a point in a 5-4 (SO) loss against the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday night at T-Mobile Area.
Max Pacioretty netted his seventh career hat trick including the game-tying goal with just 3:25 left in regulation. Mark Stone assisted on all three of Pacioretty’s goals. Alec Martinez also had a pair of assists, including setting up Pacioretty’s game-tying goal.
For St. Louis, David Perron scored twice against his former team and added a goal in the shootout for good measure.
Robin Lehner struggled early, giving up three first period goals. He settled down in the second period and faced almost no work in the third, but did have to come up big on Jordan Kyrou’s toe drag attempt from the low slot, kicking it away with the right pad. Immediately after that save, the Golden Knights went right back down the ice and scored to tie the game at four and force overtime and the eventual shootout.
The Vegas Golden Knights power play also struggled in the game but did contribute an important five-on-three goal in the third period to make it a 4-3 game. Pacioretty scored on a long wrist shot that Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington couldn’t see as it beat him high over the left shoulder. The VGK finished the game 1-for-5 on the power play.
- Considering that the team didn’t know until arriving at the arena what the coaching situation would be, Vegas did pretty well. Max Pacioretty talked about the team’s systems and structure in his post-game interview, pointing out that they’re well-coached and knew exactly what they had to do.
- Lehner did struggle early on, particularly on a puck that slipped between his arm and body but also failing to seal off the near side post on another first-period goal. Lehner also missed badly on a poke check attempt on Kyrou’s goal as well. Going from up 1-0 to down 3-1 is a lot even for a good team like the Vegas Golden Knights, and fortunately, Lehner settled down and his teammates were able to earn a point.
- Expect Marc-Andre Fleury to start on Thursday. Fleury has been the better of the two goalies early this season, going 3-0 with a 1.00 GAA, .951 save percentage, and one shutout.
- Former Vegas Golden Knights forward David Perron put on a two-goal show against his former team. Perron notched one at even strength and one on the power play.
- According to the unofficial count of the VGK TV crew, the Golden Knights hit the goal post six times in the game. Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington still had to work, making 42 saves for the win.