The Vegas Golden Knights (13-10) had been struggling to find their game as they entered Friday night’s game. The team had lost three of their past four games and entered a must-win game against the five-win Arizona Coyotes (5-17-2). In a much-needed effort, the Golden Knights came out, took care of business, and defeated the Coyotes 7-1.
Dylan Coghlan and Adam Brooks were reinserted into the Golden Knights lineup and took out Ben Hutton and Brett Howden. Mark Stone, who was shaken up last game against the Anaheim Ducks was able to play after being listed as a game-time decision. Laurent Brossoit got the start in net and stopped 28 of 29 for his fourth win of the season.
Roughly eight minutes into the game the Golden Knights scored first after some good patience from Nicolas Roy. Jonathan Marchessault found the back of the net for his tenth goal of the season after receiving the pass from Roy. This assist marked Roy’s first point in six games.
The Coyotes’ only goal of the game came in the first period from Travis Boyd after he and Clayton Keller marched in on a two-on-one. This play was set up nicely by a long stretch pass from two-time Stanley Cup Champion Phil Kessel.
The Golden Knight’s powerplay scored two goals in their last game against the Ducks. With players returning to the lineup, the Golden Knight’s, powerplay has slowly improved, and entering this game was ranked at 25th in the NHL. The Golden Knight’s powerplay scored once again versus the Coyotes with Max Pacioretty firing home his patented wrist shot.
Special teams continued to play a factor in the game as Chandler Stephenson scored a shorthanded goal in the second period. This is the Golden Knight’s sixth SHG this season and third in two games. After the Coyotes powerplay in which Stephenson scored, Pacioretty came out of the box, received a pass from Stone, and then roofed a shot past Karel Vejmelka to make it 4-1.
The game left the grasp of the Coyotes as Michael Amadio and William Carrier combined for a slick back and forth play for the Golden Knight’s fifth goal. Amadio scored his first goal as a member of the Vegas Golden Knights. Evgenii Dadonov added to the lead for the VGK after some nice defensive zone plays and then a stretch pass from Dylan Coghlan.
— Arizona Coyotes (@ArizonaCoyotes) December 4, 2021
To start the third period the game was a little shorthanded as referee Jonny Murray left the game and only three officials remained to call the game. Murray was hit by the puck after a clearing attempt from Alex Pietrangelo.
That unfortunate injury, Brossoit losing a skate blade, and a minor scrum were perhaps the only notable things that happened through most of the third period.
Keegan Kolesar dropped the gloves with Liam O’Brien who was a thorn in the side of the Golden Knights all night. A nice pass from Shea Theodore set up Roy who scored the seventh goal for the VGK. The Golden Knights closed out the game and won 7-1.
It was about everything you could have asked for Friday night as the Golden Knights defeated an inferior Coyotes team in dramatic fashion. The team will return home and play the Pacific Division leading Calgary Flames (14-4-5) on Sunday at 7:00 pm.