Danny Webster of the Las Vegas Sun is reporting that the Vegas Golden Knights will be without the services of Chandler Stephenson this evening when they take on the Minnesota Wild. Stephenson was a late scratch with what is being described as an illness. He remains questionable for tomorrow night’s game against the Nashville Predators.
The 28-year-old Stephenson has 59 points in 76 games this season for the Golden Knights and should top 60 points for the second straight year. The Saskatoon native emerged last season as an offensive threat for Vegas and has carried his point production into this season as he currently sits second on Vegas in scoring. Stephenson came over to the Golden Knights in a trade with the Washington Capitals back in 2019 and quickly morphed his game from a defensive bottom six center into a play driving offensive player who is part of an effective power play unit.
Stephenson’s absence likely means that Teddy Blueger will be elevated from the fourth line to play alongside Phil Kessel on the third line. Blueger came over from the Pittsburgh Penguins at the trade deadline and hasn’t shown much offense this season. He has five points in 14 games with Vegas since the trade and just 15 points in 59 games on the season.
Vegas has already clinched a playoff spot in what has been a bounce back season for the team after missing the postseason last year. The Golden Knights have a good chance to win the Pacific Division as they currently sit one point up on the Los Angeles Kings with a game in hand.