The team at Adam Kutner Cares once again gave away two tickets to a lucky fan from our Facebook giveaway. The AKC team was also able to give a Zamboni ride during the Vegas Golden Knights’ game against the Blue Jackets Saturday night. For more pics, head to our Facebook page.
It was the Golden Knights first game since January 23rd, and the T-Mobile Arena crowd was excited. Vegas hosted the Columbus Blue Jackets for the second and final match-up of the year.
Golden Knights fans were also happy to have back forward William Carrier on the ice. Carrier missed significant time with an undisclosed injury, but was inserted back into Gerard Gallant’s lineup last night against the Blue Jackets.
The game leaned towards Columbus early on, as they deflected an early goal past Marc-Andre Fleury. However, the Blue Jackets 1-0 lead wouldn’t last long, as defenseman Nate Schmidt got a lucky bounce and tied the game 1-1 :36 seconds later.
“The first 20 minutes. First couple minutes of the third period. The recipe was pretty easy, they wanted to play, and we talked after the first period playing that type of game, getting that kind of speed in your game. When you don’t do it for a full game, you’re not going to be successful. Teams are too good in this league, can’t really take that kind of time off against a good team.”
-Nate Schmidt, Vegas Defenseman
Vegas tacked on another first period goal, this time on a short handed goal by defenseman Jon Merrill. Reilly Smith broke free with a great 4-on-5 chance that created an open ice rebound for Merrill. The defenseman scored his second goal of the season, and recorded the first shorthanded goal by a defenseman in Golden Knights history.
The second period was back and fourth but neither team could convert. With five minutes remaining in the period, Columbus star Artemi Panarin jumped on a Fleury mistake and tied the game 2-2.
“I didn’t like our second period at all. I just thought, trying to get the guys more into the game. So, I went down to three lines basically and rotated Pierre-Edouard Bellemare in and out. I just wanted to get the guys get going a little bit, and I thought they did.”
-Gerard Gallant, Vegas Coach
The final period was full of scoring chances by both teams, but the score remained tied 2-2 for most of the period. Gallant shortened his bench and it paid off midway through the third period. Cody Eakin drilled his 15th goal of the season on a beautiful one-time pass by Pierre Eduard Bellemare to regain the lead 3-2.
However, the Golden Knights couldn’t contain the Blue Jackets forward Cam Atkinson. Columbus’ top liner scored two goals late in the game to give his team the 4-3 victory.
“The team should be happy. We talked about Colorado, I don’t think we played a lot of minute, we have played more minutes than Phoenix. We put more good minutes into being that complete team for a month or so. Hopefully, we get out of here tomorrow and keep it going.”-John Tortorella, Blue Jackets Coach
Vegas drops their record to (31-22-4) and stand in third place in the Pacific Division. The Golden Knights get back on the ice Tuesday night when they face the Arizona Coyotes.