The Chicago Blackhawks took whole benefit of their
opportunities in Edmonton as they innovative into the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but
now the highway receives significantly harder as they’ll acquire on the top-seeded Vegas
Golden Knights in the Western Meeting Quarterfinals.
The Golden Knights, who went a excellent 3- in round robin
play against the other top three teams in the west, are a formidable squad with
robust goaltending, a deep and proficient ahead group, and a blue line total of
players ready and equipped to generate offensive belongings when necessary.
That goaltending group is headlined by the two-headed
monster of Marc-Andre Fleury and Robin Lehner, who is a good deal common to Blackhawks
followers, as he performed 33 online games in Chicago this year just before being traded to the
Golden Knights in February.
Lehner commenced two of the three online games the Knights played in
round robin engage in, and despite the fact that Vegas head mentor Pete DeBoer hasn’t named a
starter for the collection nevertheless, it would appear Lehner will have the within observe
to facial area his previous group when the playoffs start out this week.
On the defensive side, the Golden Knights are a team with
lots of depth and talent, but the group is headlined by the gamers that can
make plays materialize on the offensive aspect of the ice. Nate Schmidt and Shea
Theodore are two of the Golden Knights’ most successful gamers offensively,
and their potential to stretch the ice and to keep strain on opposing forwards
can result in even the most gifted of teams matches as they check out to established up their
That superior stage of engagement by the blue liners makes
plenty of opportunities for the team’s forward team, and they have 1 of the
deepest groups of forwards in the league, with gamers like Max Pacioretty,
Mark Stone and William Karlsson all furnishing sufficient scoring prowess to the
The Golden Knights did end outside the house of the best 10 in the
league in both ambitions scored for each video game and goals permitted for each recreation, but make no
mistake: this is a team that can rating aims in bunches and has the means to
persevere by means of scoring droughts from their top-tier gamers, not like the leading-significant
Edmonton Oilers squad that the Blackhawks just knocked off.
In conditions of weaknesses, there is just one important location to continue to keep an eye
on for Vegas: their penalty destroy. Although the Oilers experienced 1 of the greatest penal,ty
killing models in the league this year, the Golden Knights had 1 of the
worst, killing off 80.8% of the energy plays they faced. In simple fact, only one particular crew
however suitable for postseason contention had a worse penalty kill than the
Golden Knights, with the Toronto Maple Leafs nonetheless struggling with an elimination match Sunday
That could be an space where the Blackhawks could perhaps
do some destruction, as they confirmed some prowess on the electric power engage in in Video games 1 and 4
of their series with Edmonton. If Dominik Kubalik and Jonathan Toews can
carry on their sturdy enjoy, the male-benefit could be a vital advantage to a
Blackhawks squad hunting for a large upset.
That upset could also be aided by Corey Crawford, as the
netminder performed his finest activity of the postseason in Friday’s Recreation 4 gain over
Edmonton. If Crawford, who is even now recovering following lacking most of instruction
camp with the coronavirus, is equipped to find his kind, the Golden Knights could
be in for a stern problem, as the proven playoff performer could enable give
his club a battling chance in the postseason.
Eventually, the Blackhawks do confront an uphill climb in opposition to
these Golden Knights, who have been 1 of the NHL’s most outstanding stories
through their temporary record in the league. The Blackhawks went 1-1-1 towards
Vegas through the frequent season, and have struggled in their all-time series
towards Vegas, going 1-6-2 in nine all-time meetings.
The NHL is envisioned to launch the first spherical agenda
shortly, and the Blackhawks will likely once all over again get late-evening billing from the
league. You can keep up with coverage on that announcement, as properly as the
complete sequence, appropriate below on the NBC 5 Chicago Hockey web page.