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Quick Hits: 4 Ways the Golden Knights Win Game 3



Jake Oettinger save on Jack Eichel Vegas Golden Knights Dallas Stars (Photo- Vegas Golden Knights via Twitter)

Putting it in print will be far easier than doing it. The Vegas Golden Knights will most likely face the very best, meanest, hungriest Dallas Stars team they’ve seen since the 2020 Final Four. The Stars know the series is essentially over if they lose Game 3.

The fans know it, too. The pressure on Dallas will be dwarfed by the internal desperation felt by the guys in green.

However, the game is winnable for the VGK for a few very good reasons, but they also need to avoid some bad habits which have crept into their game, like gout.

The Golden Knights are big underdogs Tuesday, as oddsmakers expect Dallas to revive the series. Vegas is a -140 underdog. You can always take advantage of the oddsmaker’s folly with the Caesars Sportsbook Promo Code

Also, Chandler Stephenson might be out due to illness. He’s a game-time decision, and his absence will change a few things the Golden Knights do and their depth. Which will make these even more important.

4 Ways the Vegas Golden Knights Win Game 3

1. STOP taking bad penalties. 

Chandler Stephenson was the hero of Game 2, but he took a pair of terrible penalties, including one which put the Golden Knights on their heels at the beginning of the third period.

“Have to check your ego. That’s what we told the guys at the intermission,” coach Bruce Cassidy said.

The Golden Knights were the least penalized team in the regular season, but they’ve made a habit of taking penalties in the first and third periods.

2. Maybe Try Scoring First? 

The Golden Knights have allowed the first goal in 10 of 13 playoff games yet have won seven. In the words of Molly Hatchet, that’s flirting with disaster.

If they fall behind 1-0 in Game 3, I don’t care how much “experience” they have; Dallas will pour it on. They will look for the knockout punch as their fans go bananas. Their season is on the line.

However, if the Golden Knights score first and hold the lead for a spell, it becomes “squeaky bum” time (I learned that phrase watching an English driver at Indy 500 qualifying last weekend) in the Lone Star state. The pressure will begin to mount on Dallas. They will take chances.

When Dallas breaks ranks, the Golden Knights are well suited to counter-attack and finish the job.

But … the Golden Knights must put Dallas in a position to feel pressure. Scoring first would be a big step.

3. Net Fronts

The Golden Knights decidedly did not do a good job getting to Jake Oettinger for about 50 minutes on Sunday. The Dallas goalie could see most shots and was not irritated.

The Golden Knights must get those pucks deep, then get to the net. They must use their superior depth and physicality over Dallas to establish a net-front presence in the offensive zone. Do that consistently, and Oettinger will give a few rebounds to poke into the cage.

In the defensive zone, the Golden Knights had some issues tying up sticks and taking the body near the net. Blocked shots became loose pucks that Adin Hill didn’t have a chance to stop.

4. Forecheck Speed

The Golden Knights had maple syrup on their skates for most of Game 2. They were sticky but slow. The forecheck wasn’t working, and the Golden Knights failed to gain meaningful possession in the offensive zone.

They were a step slow and a moment late as Dallas did a splendid job clogging the ice and muddling their breakouts. The Golden Knights didn’t generate much speed out of their own zone after the first five minutes.

Jack Eiche turned the tide with a few individual efforts, and he escaped the zone and charged into the Dallas zone at full speed. He forced the Dallas defense to retreat and defend, opening space for his linemates.

His team took their cue from Eichel, and the increased energy fed more aggression on the zone entries and forecheck. Suddenly, it all started working. The Golden Knights can’t afford to wait 50 minutes again. They need to get on Dallas, create turnovers and generate some frustration.

Do a few things well, and the Vegas Golden Knights could have a 3-0 series.

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