Golden knights playoff preview 2023 pavel dorofeyev
Photo Credit: Stacy Bengs/AP

FSM Essential Preview: Golden Knights Playoff Preview 2023

Franchise Sports Media

 

The Golden Knights regular season is over, and now they look ahead to a Stanley Cup run in the playoffs.

Get ready for the playoffs with the Golden Knights Playoff Preview 2023

Golden Knights Playoff Preview 2023 Jonathan Quick and Jack Eichel
Photo Credit: Chris Unger/Getty Images

The offseason for the Vegas Golden Knights started in a way not everyone expected. After missing the playoffs last year, they faced more troubles with injuries starting with goaltender Robin Lehner and team captain Mark Stone. They were injuries that seemed impossible to overcome.

But throughout the injuries and naysayers, the Golden Knights, led by new coach Bruce Cassidy have proven everybody wrong so far and now start another journey in the Stanley Cup playoffs.  

The Golden Knights finished the season with a franchise-high 111 points,  winning their third Pacific Division title and the number one seed in the Western Conference.

Now Vegas is set to play against the second wild-card team Winnipeg Jets, in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

The first-round matchup for the Golden Knights seems favorable; Vegas was 3-0-0 against the Jets in the regular season. The past three matchups were close in margin, especially the last meeting back on December 13th when the VGK won 6-5.

Despite the Golden Knights having the three-game edge over the Jets in the regular season, much has changed since December. The Winnipeg Jets have made adjustments.

The Jets rank pretty high in most of their stats regarding goals, shots, and shots against. The Jets are also ranked 9th in the league for goals allowed.

For some time, the Jets have led the Central Division with the help of their goaltender, Conor Hellebuyck, who has a save percentage of .920.

The Golden Knights vs Jets in the first round of the playoffs.

Vegas is the odds-on favorite in this series, but they’ll still need to say consistent like they were during the regular season to move past the first round. 

The Golden Knights playoff run starts Tuesday.

Golden Knights Playoff Preview 2023 Laurent Brossoit
Photo Credit: Stacy Bengs/AP

Other than the goaltender, the Jets also depend on their top line, led by Mark Scheifele, who leads the team with 42 goals (10th overall in the NHL), Kyle Connor, and Nino Niederreiter.

The top line for Winnipeg is the only concern that Vegas should have; the Golden Knights’ third and fourth lines should be able to contain the other transition lines of the Jets in this series. 

Another question going into this series is the goaltending, mainly on the part of Vegas; who should start? Robin Lehner’s season-ending injury led to Logan Thompson’s uprise and surpassing expectations making the All-Star team and having a save percentage of .915%. Still, Thompson had two unfortunate injuries, his second happening a month prior.

Laurent Brossoit got called up from the AHL Henderson Silver Knights to fill in and has played tremendously well, having a save percentage of .927 and a 7-0-3 record as a starter. The Golden Knights acquiring Jonathan Quick was a big help due to the injuries on the goaltender lineup. Despite Quick being the veteran with two Stanley Cups with the Los Angeles Kings, Brossoit will get the starting job in this series until Thompson can play again.

The Jets have some upside on one of their lines and their goaltender, but overall the Golden Knights are the favorite to win this series. Vegas is full of talent on all their lines, primarily led by Jack Eichel, their leading scorer with 27 goals, who has been a great help on offense. The Golden Knights need to stay consistent, as they did during the regular season, to make a deep run in the Stanley Cup playoffs. 

Is this the year the Golden Knights’ playoff run ends with a Stanley Cup?.

On Tuesday, the Golden Knights will play against the Winnipeg Jets in Game 1 of the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs at T-Mobile Arena. The puck drops at 6:30 PM. The game can be seen on AT&T SportsNet (channel 313 on Cox Cable) and ESPN 2 (channel 31 on Cox Cable) or heard on 98.9 FM, FOX Sports Las Vegas 1340 AM.

 

– Jonathan Randall – Franchise Sports Media

Follow Jonathan on Twitter @JonnyQuest_91 

and on Instagram @jonny._91  

Follow The Franchise on social media

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

YouTube