Golden knights vs avalanche
Photo Credit: Action Network

Game Preview: Golden Knights vs Avalanche – Round Robin – Game 3

https://franchisesportsmedia.com

 

The Vegas Golden Knights take on the Colorado Avalanche on Saturday to determine who will be the top two seeds in the Western Conference. The scenario is simple. The winning team is the top seed in the West and will face the lowest remaining seed for each of the remaining conference matchups.

 

VGK Weekly Update 7/13/2020 Golden Knights 2020 season
Photo Credit: Knights On Ice

The Avalanche come into this game in top form, giving up just one goal in their two round-robin games versus St. Louis and Dallas, two opponents VGK also came back to defeat this week. Vegas, on the other hand, has given up seven goals in their games versus St. Louis and Dallas. The Avalanche has owned Vegas this year, winning their two regular-season games by a combined margin of thirteen to six, with both games being at T-Mobile Arena.

The Golden Knights are a different team since they played the Avalanche back in December. Saturday’s game will not feature Deryk Engelland, Nicolas Hague, Valentin Zykov, and Marc Andre Fleury will not be in net. Coach Pete DeBoer has found ways to ignite scoring for the Vegas Golden Knights since taking over in January.

This will be a close game that could turn into a track meet. Expect the intensity level to be high on both sides with hard-hitting and plenty of activity after the whistle. This could be a preview of the Western Conference Final.

 

Mark Stone has eight goals and sixteen points in nine games in the playoffs since joining the Golden Knights.

 

VGK vs Avalanche
Photo Credit: Knights On Ice

The Knights acquired Stone on February 25th, 2019, for Defenseman Erik Brannstrom, an elite puck-moving prospect who excels as a defenseman and was selected 15th overall in the 2017 NHL Draft by the Golden Knights. VGK also traded Forward Oscar Lindberg, and a second-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft that belonged to the Dallas Stars.

Stone also received a massive contract extension. The Golden Knights signed Stone to an eight-year deal that carries an average annual value of $9.5 million. In all cases, that is money well spent for the Golden Knights considering the type of production they have had from him in the regular season as well as the postseason.

Max Pacioretty is closer to returning to action. Coach DeBoer has indicated that Pacioretty is “really close,” which he then stated is closer than “on the horizon.”  

 

If the Golden Knights want to take down the Avalanche, they must control Nathan MacKinnon. MacKinnon has been named a finalist for the Hart Memorial Trophy given to the league’s MVP.

 

Golden Knights vs Avalanche
Photo Credit: Twitter

In their two meetings this season, MacKinnon had four points, but he only totaled six shots on goal. This is a player who produced 318 shots this season, including three games of 10 or more. He had 12 shots in a game against Dallas.

Since Vegas last played Colorado, the Golden Knights acquired Alec Martinez from the Los Angeles Kings. He’s a savvy defender who uses positioning and anticipation to be effective against top stars.

The Avalanche also have a young and exciting player in Defenseman Cale Makar, who has already established himself as one of the league’s most exciting impact players. The puck-moving defenseman, who had 50 points in 57 games this season, can take over a game or a series.

For the Golden Knights to win this game, their forecheckers must pressure Makar before he starts his breakouts.

Even though he is a rookie, Makar played ten playoff games last season, registering six points. With his skating, Makar has the ideal skill-set to play with MacKinnon.

 

Enjoy this game. This will be a great tune-up for the Stanley Cup Playoffs that start next week. The puck drops at 12 pm Pacific and can be seen on NBC.

Golden Knights vs Avalanche    Golden Knights vs Avalanche    Golden Knights vs Avalanche    Golden Knights vs Avalanche    Golden Knights vs Avalanche    Golden Knights vs Avalanche    Golden Knights vs Avalanche    Golden Knights vs Avalanche     

-Chris Gawlik – Franchise Sports Media

Follow The Franchise on social media

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

YouTube