The Chicago Blackhawks took whole advantage of their
options in Edmonton as they highly developed into the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but
now the road gets appreciably more difficult as they’ll acquire on the leading-seeded Vegas
Golden Knights in the Western Conference Quarterfinals.
The Golden Knights, who went a great 3- in round robin
perform in opposition to the other prime 3 teams in the west, are a formidable squad with
strong goaltending, a deep and proficient forward team, and a blue line full of
gamers prepared and equipped to generate offensive belongings when required.
That goaltending group is headlined by the two-headed
monster of Marc-Andre Fleury and Robin Lehner, who is a great deal familiar to Blackhawks
lovers, as he performed 33 video games in Chicago this period before getting traded to the
Golden Knights in February.
Lehner started off two of the a few game titles the Knights played in
round robin play, and while Vegas head mentor Pete DeBoer hasn’t named a
starter for the series nevertheless, it would seem Lehner will have the within keep track of
to deal with his former team when the playoffs begin this 7 days.
On the defensive side, the Golden Knights are a team with
loads of depth and expertise, but the team is headlined by the players that can
make performs come about on the offensive aspect of the ice. Nate Schmidt and Shea
Theodore are two of the Golden Knights’ most effective gamers offensively,
and their means to stretch the ice and to keep strain on opposing forwards
can cause even the most talented of groups fits as they attempt to established up their
That significant stage of engagement by the blue liners generates
a good deal of options for the team’s forward team, and they have a person of the
deepest teams of forwards in the league, with gamers like Max Pacioretty,
Mark Stone and William Karlsson all furnishing ample scoring prowess to the
The Golden Knights did complete outside of the prime 10 in the
league in both of those targets scored for every game and objectives permitted per recreation, but make no
blunder: this is a group that can rating objectives in bunches and has the means to
persevere through scoring droughts from their prime-tier players, as opposed to the major-weighty
Edmonton Oilers squad that the Blackhawks just knocked off.
In phrases of weaknesses, there is one particular key location to retain an eye
on for Vegas: their penalty get rid of. Whilst the Oilers had one particular of the finest penal,ty
killing models in the league this period, the Golden Knights experienced one particular of the
worst, killing off 80.8% of the electrical power plays they faced. In truth, only a person staff
still suitable for postseason competition had a even worse penalty get rid of than the
Golden Knights, with the Toronto Maple Leafs still facing an elimination recreation Sunday
That could be an region where the Blackhawks could most likely
do some problems, as they showed some prowess on the ability play in Online games 1 and 4
of their collection with Edmonton. If Dominik Kubalik and Jonathan Toews can
continue on their sturdy play, the gentleman-benefit could be a important benefit to a
Blackhawks squad seeking for a major upset.
That upset could also be assisted by Corey Crawford, as the
netminder performed his greatest sport of the postseason in Friday’s Video game 4 acquire around
Edmonton. If Crawford, who is nevertheless recovering after missing most of teaching
camp with the coronavirus, is equipped to find his variety, the Golden Knights could
be in for a stern problem, as the tested playoff performer could support give
his club a preventing likelihood in the postseason.
Ultimately, the Blackhawks do confront an uphill climb versus
these Golden Knights, who have been one of the NHL’s most impressive tales
throughout their quick historical past in the league. The Blackhawks went 1-1-1 against
Vegas throughout the standard year, and have struggled in their all-time series
in opposition to Vegas, heading 1-6-2 in 9 all-time conferences.
The NHL is anticipated to release the very first round schedule
soon, and the Blackhawks will very likely as soon as again get late-evening billing from the
league. You can preserve up with protection on that announcement, as very well as the
full collection, appropriate below on the NBC 5 Chicago Hockey web site.