It has been an eventful first few seasons in the NHL for the Golden Knights. Vegas reached the Stanley Cup Final in their inaugural year but they haven’t made it back since while the team has made several shakeup trades plus a pair of coaching changes. Despite the heavy turnover, owner Bill Foley told Danny Webster of the Las Vegas Sun that he has full confidence in the management team of GM Kelly McCrimmon and President of Hockey Operations George McPhee:
We’re a team. I’m 100% in with them and with Bruce. I didn’t get involved in this team to just be another team that goes along like a typical expansion team, winning 24 games in their first season, then win 30 the next season, make the playoffs in six or seven years.
We’ve been all-in from Day 1. I know a lot of fans are saying, “Gee, you’ve made so many changes.” It was all done with the design to win. That’s what we’re doing. George and Kelly are right there with me. I believe we’ve put together a solid group of solid core players.
With Robin Lehner being out for the season, expectations were a little lower heading into this year. However, the tandem of Logan Thompson and Adin Hill has fared quite well so far with the Golden Knights allowing the fewest goals in the league heading into today’s action. That has them in first in the Pacific in the early going but with only $16 in LTIR space left, they’ll be hard-pressed to add to their roster.
Elsewhere in the West:
- On top of potentially getting Quinn Hughes back soon, the Canucks could also get some help up front as Ben Kuzma of the Vancouver Province relays (Twitter link) that winger Brock Boeser is expected to meet with team doctors on Monday in the hopes of being cleared to return. The 25-year-old has missed the last three games with an undisclosed injury and was placed on IR on Wednesday. He has to miss seven days and it doesn’t appear as if the placement was backdated so Tuesday’s game might not be doable for Boeser but it looks like his absence will be a short one.
- Blackhawks defenseman Ian Mitchell was initially ruled out for six weeks with a hand injury that occurred nearly six weeks ago. However, Ben Pope of the Chicago Sun-Times notes (Twitter link) that the 23-year-old has just resumed stickhandling and is nowhere near a return. Mitchell is in the final year of his entry-level deal and after spending most of last season with AHL Rockford, a longer-than-expected absence isn’t exactly the start to the year he was hoping for. Meanwhile, goaltender Petr Mrazek has resumed skating but the team will be cautious and inch him along for the time being.