National Hockey League playoffs 2018: Updated bracket after Golden Knights beat Sharks
May 08 2018
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The Golden Knights now await the victor of Nashville and Winnipeg, who will battle it out for at least one more game while Vegas gets even more rest. (Especially considering that the National Hockey League was only four teams deep at that time.) And while the 1967-68 St. Louis Blues made the Stanley Cup Final, they did so thanks to playing in a division composed exclusively of expansion teams; they were swept in four games by the Original Six Montreal Canadians in that final.
They also had several other chances that either Fleury turned aside with acrobatic saves, trickled just wide or they were unable to get a clean shot, like a rebound Couture whiffed on from the slot in the first period with an open net.
The Vegas Golden Knights are on their way to the Western Conference Finals for the first time in their history.a history that is not even a season old.
Perhaps the biggest difference between the Sharks and the Vegas Golden Knights in their second round playoff series was the play of their respective top lines.
"It was maybe a little bit of a shock, but I'm proud of our team, our organization, the way they did things here", Fleury said.
It might be a question the Sharks - eliminated from the playoffs with a 3-0 loss to the expansion Golden Knights on Sunday - will ask of themselves for quite some time. Cody Eakin of Winnipeg, Manitoba also scored for Vegas. Fleury had 28 saves in Game 6, and has three straight shutouts in series-clinching game, including a 1-0 win against the Los Angeles Kings in Game 4 of the first round and a 2-0 win for the Pittsburgh Penguins against the Washington Capitals in Game 7 of the 2017 Eastern Conference Second Round.
"Our guys trust each other, and that's something you can't build over time", defenseman Nate Schmidt said. You know it. I know it. "As a team, individually, that's something that's very hard to take". Marc-Edouard Vlasic picked it up and had it on his stick for a moment before it was knocked off by Karlsson. Reilly Smith took control near the blue line and found Marchessault alone in front for a goal that trickled between Martin Jones' pads. With 6:14 remaining, the Sharks had a chance to cut the Golden Knights lead to 2-1 but Brent Burns shot hit off the goalpost again and bounced out. His shot from in close slipped under Jones for his fourth goal of the playoffs and a 1-0 Vegas lead. Play continued but was halted seconds later, when a quick video review determined the puck had crossed the goal line. "Like I said, I have a lot of confidence in this group".
It's the sound of players trying to earn their way into the lineup.
"It's a fine line", coach Peter DeBoer said. That's hockey. But Vegas deserves to be moving on.
While Ryan Reaves only made the lineup in Game 6 because of an injury to forward William Carrier, Reaves proved that he wants to be in this lineup.