The Vegas Golden Knights are seeing lucky no. 7s tonight as they defeated the Montreal Canadiens for their seventh-straight victory. But also seeing no. 7 is Canadiens forward Josh Anderson, who hit Golden Knights defenseman Alex Pietrangelo from behind in the third period and got a game misconduct.
Here are Vegas Hockey Now’s takeaways from the Golden Knight’s 6-4 win Saturday evening.
Golden Knights Takeaways
Let’s jump into what everyone is likely here for: Anderson’s hit on Pietrangelo in the third period.
Playing the puck up the boards near the Golden Knight’s bench, Pietrangelo got hit directly from behind in a dangerous area of the ice by Anderson. Thankfully, Pietrangelo was fine after the hit, as his visor shielded his contact with the boards. He didn’t miss a shift and played over 24 minutes Saturday.
Josh Anderson receives a game misconduct for this dangerous hit on Alex Pietrangelo. pic.twitter.com/2wRaDDKwgq
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) November 6, 2022
Immediately after the hit, Alec Martinez, Brett Howden, and Pietrangelo himself retaliated on Anderson.
The play ended with Martinez and Pietrangelo getting roughing penalties and Anderson getting a five-minute major and a game misconduct for boarding. We’ll have to wait until tomorrow to see if Anderson will receive any further discipline from the NHL Department of Player Safety.
“I don’t like it. It’s unnecessary to me. But we dealt with it. I thought our guys stuck together. And I thought it was the right call on the ice. We’ll see what happens from there,” said head coach Bruce Cassidy on the play.
The analysis of the hit is pretty simple. Pietrangelo had his back turned, and Anderson hit him from behind at a dangerous area of the ice, right next to the boars. This hit could have damaged Pietrangelo’s neck, head, or back, but luckily didn’t.
“That’s tough. It’s a dangerous play, I don’t know what was going through his mind. But if you see a player turn his back around like that, the last thing you do is try and run him through the boards,” said Reilly Smith, who scored two goals in the Golden Knight’s 6-4 victory.
Strong 4th Line Performance
Moving onto other areas of the game, the Golden Knight’s fourth line was perhaps their best line Saturday. They were hard on pucks, defensively sound, and forechecking well.
I had Will Carrier as my player of the game for the longest time before I switched it last minute to Nicolas Hague. The fourth line did get rewarded with two goals in the third period, just 21 seconds apart.
“The way they play, it’s remarkable. Every night they get not only goals but momentum for the next shift going out there. If we didn’t have them in the first period, we would have struggled,” said Golden Knights forward Jonathan Marchessault.
Savard v Martinez
Saturday’s game also featured a statistical matchup between Alec Martinez and David Savard. The two are neck-in-neck for the NHL’s lead in shot blocks. In this game, Martinez had four and Savard two.
With this, Martinez still leads the league in blocked shots with 58. Savard has 45, and Golden Knight Alex Pietrangelo has 34
Additional Knight’s Nuggets
- Congratulations to Jonathan Marchessault for 300 career points with the Vegas Golden Knights.
- Currently injured, Evgenii Dadonov did not get a revenge game Saturday against the VGK.
- Arber Xhekaj and Keegan Kolesar got into things in the first period. Both went to the box, and the two teams played 4-on-4 for two minutes. We’ve seen what Jack Eichel, Chandler Stephenson, and Shea Theodore can do with a little bit more space. Call me crazy, but maybe the Golden Knights should look to even up penalties more often. Although that is easier said than done.
- Cassidy gave Lil Jon a shoutout postgame referencing how his strategy in the Golden Knight’s latest commercial was a big part of their success against the Canadiens.