Why Vegas has two teams to thank for their surprising success
The Vegas Golden Knights have been unbelievably good for an expansion team. At the beginning of the season, they went 7-0-0 against the final four teams from last year’s Stanley Cup Finals; (Ottawa, Predators, Penguins, and the Ducks). With such a surprising resumé, it’s hard to not think of the Golden Knights becoming the first expansion team to win the Stanley Cup in their first year.
But who is behind all of this success?
Why these two? Well for starters, Fleury spent 13 faithful years with the Pittsburgh Penguins before he was left unprotected by them in the 2017 Expansion Draft. Naturally, he was emotional in his departure, and so were the Pens’ faithful. But with a save percentage of .946 and a GAA of 1.68, he is a clear factor in their winning ways.
William Karlsson is a beast of a player. He already has 27 goals and 42 total points. Karlsson was taken from the Columbus Blue Jackets in the Expansion Draft as well. Let me tell you, dumb move. Karlsson is the G.O.A.T. of the Golden Knights this year, and hopefully for much more as the youngster is only 25 years young.
If Vegas wants to be successful, they need to build around these two players. To be successful in the NHL, you need a great coach, who Vegas has in Gerard Gallant, a great goalie, Fleury, and a team leader, or leaders, who are found in Karlsson and James Neal.
Prepare for greatness, and don’t be shocked by the Stanley Cup finals this year. Tampa Bay Lightning vs. the Vegas Golden Knights. (Don’t @ me).