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Golden Knights Analysis

Is Dyaln Coghlan the Odd-Man Out on Defense Next Season?



Welcome back to Vegas Hockey Now’s season in review series where we look at every player on the Vegas Golden Knights and their 2021-22 season from Michael Amadio to Zach Whitecloud.

You can catch up on the series here: Michael AmadioReilly SmithJonas RondbjergKeegan KolesarRobin LehnerAlex Pietrangelo, Nolan PatrickShea TheodoreJake LeschyshynMark StoneMax PaciorettyLaurent BrossoitMattias JanmarkWilliam CarrierJack EichelNicolas Roy, Chandler Stephenson, Jonathan Marchessault, and Ben Hutton.

Today’s player is Dylan Coghlan.


Dylan Coghlan Vegas Golden Knights official 2021-22 headshot

Stats: 59 GP 3-10-13 PTS
Contract: One year left at $762K
Games Missed: 23*
Status: Healthy
VHN’s Grade: C-

Overall Thoughts

In his second season in the NHL, Dylan Coghlan took the next step in his development as a full-fledge NHL’er. However, unlike guys like Nicolas Hague and Zach Whitecloud, Coghlan’s step was a little smaller. But at 24 years of age, there is still time for Coghlan to develop his game.

Hit with injuries all season, the Golden Knights used 13 defensemen in 2021-22 and Coghlan was one whose role was elevated with guys out of the lineup. Even when injured defenseman like Alec Martinez returned to the lineup, head coach Peter DeBoer opted to keep Coghlan in the lineup as a seventh D.

Coghlan also saw some looks on the powerplay with his shot being a weapon the VGK can use to their advantage. His defensive game needs some work though as he was second-worst on the team with a -5 on the season, only behind Keegan Kolesar.


The biggest highlight overall for Coghlan’s season was simply his increased role on the Golden Knights. With injuries playing a factor, he marched up the lineup and his total average time on ice increased to around 15 minutes a night. He nears the 100-game mark in the NHL in just his third season.

As an emerging young two-way defenseman, Coghlan has just six goals in his NHL career. Three of them came in one game in 2020-21 against the Minnesota Wild. The other three came this season against the Canadiens, Devils, and Rangers.

What’s Next?

Coghlan unfortunately didn’t take a big enough leap in his development this past season to justify a roster position on the Golden Knights in 2022-23. Right now, it looks like he the odd-man-out and a spare defenceman for the VGK. He will be the first D called upon when injuries inevitably occur.

The Golden Knights have Shea Theodore, Alex Pietrangelo, and Alec Martinez as their D-core with veterans Brayden McNabb and Ben Hutton as well. Then Zach Whitecloud and Nicolas Hague are two solid young defensive options with Coghlan being the 7th to 8th best defenseman on this team.