Resort fees, 6:5 Blackjack, and goaltender drama are certainties in Las Vegas. We do not like any of those, but we have learned to tolerate them.
The Vegas Golden Knights have had no shortage of drama in the crease. A bloody sword, mounting injuries, and Robin Lehner’s snake farm — it is impossible to surprise a Golden Knights fan.
2022-23 season: Adin Hill was dominant in the playoffs and earned a two-year extension worth $4.9 million AAV. Logan Thompson started the season as the No.1 goalie and has two years remaining at $766,667 AAV.
Thompson was getting the larger portion of the net last season. Through Jan. 28 Thompson appeared in 35 games to Hill’s 18 despite Hill being the higher paid.
Thompson did not appear in the net after aggravating a lower-body injury on Mar. 23. Hill did not appear in the net from Mar. 7 to May 6 due to a lower-body injury.
Hill was impeccable in the playoffs, going 11-4 and putting up the second-best playoff save percentage ever at .932.
2023-24 season: Health is the first measuring stick for Thompson and Hill. The perfect scenario is 75 games collectively and close to a 50/50 split in games started. Both goalies need to surpass their highest number for career starts in a season; Thompson 37 and Hill 27.
Despite Hill’s large extension, he is not guaranteed to be the No. 1 goaltender. Hill entered last season making approximately three times more than Thompson. Thompson outpaced Hill by nearly a 2:1 ratio in starts. Hill likely gets the ceremonious start on the banner-raising night, but coach Bruce Cassidy will ride the hot hand while balancing the starts.
The Golden Knights lack depth in net this upcoming season. Patera is an injury away from getting a regular role in the Golden Knights net. With just two career starts, it is unknown if he can handle the NHL competition level on a regular basis.
Expect general manager Kelly McCrimmon to have a plan in place should Thompson or Hill go down for an extended period of time.