The Vegas Golden Knights (32-21-4, 68 points) start a five-game road trip Tuesday night as they play the Philadelphia Flyers (17-28-10, 44 points) at 4:00 pm. The Golden Knights are currently on a two-game winning streak having come off a dramatic over the Ottawa Senators on Sunday.
The Flyers, on the other hand, are what the kids call “down bad.” They have just four wins this calendar year and will be prime sellers at the 2022 NHL Trade Deadline.
Nolan Patrick will be unavailable for a reunion against the team that drafted him second overall in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft. He is still out with another head injury but did shed his no-contact jersey in practice Tuesday morning.
William Carrier was also missing from practice and head coach Peter DeBoer calls him a game-time decision. Brett Howden is also not on the trip for the Golden Knights.
This game starts a five-game road trip for the Golden Knights where they will take on four non-playoff teams. Given that two teams passed the VGK in the standings in the month of February, this trip presents a perfect opportunity for the Golden Knights to gain some ground in the standings.
“It’s good to get on the road. It’s time to start stringing some wins together. A good road trip where you can create out some wins is going to be big for us down the stretch,” said defenseman Shea Theodore.
Keys to the Game
A Pulse From the Powerplay
Jack Eichel’s game-winning buzzer-beater goal against the Senators was not only dramatic and exciting, it was also a powerplay goal. The Golden Knights prior to this goal had only two powerplay goals in over 30 attempts. Now is as good of a time as ever for the powerplay to catch fire.
“I think it is that time of year where you have to be firing on all cylinders and to get that goal late, especially on the powerplay is just a confidence boost for our powerplay group as well to finally have one go in. Hopefully, we can build off that,” said Theodore.
Dad Returns From the Drugstore
Evgenii Dadonov has been invisible for the Golden Knights as of late. The 32-year old forward has just one point in his last 16 games and has gone 18 games without a goal. As the 2022 NHL Trade Deadline draws near, now less than two weeks away, Dadonov and his $5 million cap hit need to step up.
“His compete and his heart is always in the right place. For me, it is just playing with confidence and having that swagger that when you are scoring regularly you have and he has just got to get that back,” Golden Knights head coach Peter DeBoer said on Dadonov.
No Trade Value Boosts!
The Flyers are currently being outscored in their ten-game homestand 25-17. They have little to play for in the remainder of the 2021-22 NHL season. They are not making the playoffs in the congested Metropolitan Division and things are depressing in the city of Brotherly Love.
The main goal for the Flyers to wrap up this season will be to sell at the 2022 NHL Trade Deadline. Captain Claude Giroux is almost guaranteed to be moving. Rasmus Ristolainen, Derick Brassard, and Justin Braun have also been on the NHL Trade Market.
For the Golden Knights, shutting down these specific players who are looking to bolster their trade values, will be key to their success Tuesday night.
Projected Vegas Golden Knights Line Combinations
Max Pacioretty- Jack Eichel- Nicolas Roy
Jonathan Marchessault- William Karlsson- Reilly Smith
Evgenii Dadonov- Chandler Stephenson- Michael Amadio
William Carrier- Jake Leschyshyn- Keegan Kolesar
Nicolas Hague- Alex Pietrangelo
Shea Theodore- Zach Whitecloud
Ben Hutton- Dylan Coghlan
Robin Lehner/Laurent Brossoit
Vegas Golden Knights Special Teams
18.06% Powerplay (23rd) and 79.08% Penalty Kill (18th)
PP1: Pacioretty, Eichel, Dadonov, Marchessault, Theodore
PP2: Smith, Roy, Karlsson, Stephenson, Pietrangelo
PK1: Karlsson, Smith, Hague, Pietrangelo
PK2: Stephenson, Roy, Hutton, Whitecloud
Injured Reserve/COVID-19 Protocols/Scratches/Taxi Squad
Mark Stone (back), Alec Martinez (face), Nolan Patrick (head), Brayden McNabb (hand), Mattias Janmark (unknown), Brett Howden (lower-body), Jonas Rondbjerg (scratched)
Projected Philadelphia Flyers Line Combinations
Claude Giroux- Scott Laughton- Travis Konecny
Joel Farabee- Derick Brassard- Cam Atkinson
Oskar Lindblom- Kevin Hayes- James van Riemsdyk
Maxwell Willman- Patrick Brown- Zack MacEwen
Ivan Provorov- Justin Braun
Travis Sanheim- Rasmus Ristolainen
Keith Yandle- Kevin Connauton
Carter Hart/Martin Jones
Philadelphia Flyers Special Teams
13.84% Powerplay (30th) and 76.58% Penalty Kill (22nd)
PP1- JVR, Giroux, Atkinson, Farabee, Yandle
PP2- Konecny, Brassard, Hayes, Ristolainen, Provorov
PK1- Giroux, Atkinson, Provorov, Ristolainen
PK2- Brown, Lindblom, Sanheim, Braun
Injured Reserve/COVID-19 Protocols/Scratches
Ryan Ellis, Sean Couturier, Samuel Morin, Nate Thompson, Wade Allison
How to Watch/Listen
4:00 pm on At&t Sportsnet, ESPN+, and Fox Sports 98.9 FM Radio.