The Vegas Golden Knights are headed to the Western Conference finals after defeating the San Jose Sharks.
On goals by Jonathan Marchessault, Nate Schmidt and an empty netter from Cody Eakin, powered by Marc-Andre Fleury’s fourth shutout of the playoffs, the Vegas Golden Knights advance to the Conference finals.
The amazing Golden Knights just keep being unbeatable in this, their inaugural season. The San Jose Sharks played hard but simply could not get a single puck past Vegas netminder Fleury, clinching Vegas’ 4-2 series win with a 3-0 victory Sunday night.
Vegas is off to face the winner of the Nashville Predators and Winnipeg Jets series that the Jets lead 3-2. Here are 3 things we learned from this series.
Golden Knights vs. Sharks: 3 takeaways
1. We need to stop calling the Golden Knights an expansion team like it means they shouldn’t be this good
Yes, this is their first season and this is their first trip to the playoffs, but the Golden Knights aren’t playing like an expansion team.
With the sweep of the Kings and this Sharks series win, Vegas has beaten two of the more seasoned teams in this year’s playoffs. Depending on the next opponent, the Knights can hold their heads high, as these two series wins were dominant.
These guys, led by Fleury, appear to be on a mission. The city of Vegas has embraced this team. It is so easy to root for this team. First year or not, this Golden Knights team looks like it’s going to be around until the end.
2. We have a clear choice for Conn Smythe consideration
Is anyone else cheering for the Penguins to make it through to the finals? How cool would it be to see the Pens’ unprotected player for last year’s expansion draft face the team he led to last year’s Stanley Cup Final? Anyway, Fleury is on a mission.
Fleury has four shutouts this postseason in 10 games played. A 40 percent shut-out rate is ridiculous, and the team is feeding off of his confidence. For the money, even if they make it through to the final and lose, it would not surprise to see him considered.
3. We better learn how to properly say Marchessault
If they Golden Knights get to the Final, the public is going to know Jonathan Marchessault (pronounced march-eh-salt). In every big moment of these playoffs, this guy is in the mix. He started the scoring in this clinching game, continuing his consistency that has been present all season long.
Marchessault should be a household name if he continues the scoring for the remainder of this season. Fans of the Knights already know this guy and his forte for big goals. It should be an interesting conference final regardless of who they play. Both potential matchups will bring a fast-paced, high-scoring team, which will suit the Knights and Marchessault in particular just fine.