Vegas Golden Knights Doomed By Mental Errors VS Jets

WINNIPEG, MB - DECEMBER 1: Alex Tuch #89 of the Vegas Golden Knights wins a third period face-off against Adam Lowry #17 of the Winnipeg Jets at the Bell MTS Place on December 1, 2017 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. (Photo by Jonathan Kozub/NHLI via Getty Images)
WINNIPEG, MB - DECEMBER 1: Alex Tuch #89 of the Vegas Golden Knights wins a third period face-off against Adam Lowry #17 of the Winnipeg Jets at the Bell MTS Place on December 1, 2017 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. (Photo by Jonathan Kozub/NHLI via Getty Images) /
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The Vegas Golden Knights showed effort versus the Jets Friday night, but mental errors doomed the expansion team.

When the Vegas Golden Knights stepped into Bell MTS Place, they were looking to snap a two-game losing streak. After playing a great game VS the Wild, the NHL’s newest franchise tried to carry the same effort against the Jets on Friday night. Battling one of the leagues best teams the very next night is easy to get up for and the best way to get back on track.

Maxime Lagace took the crease in the second end of a back to back after having Malcolm Subban play the night before in Minnesota. Another substantial notable lineup change Vegas Head Coach Gerard Gallant made was Jon Merrill filling in on the blue line for Deryk Engelland. According to coach Gallant, Engelland didn’t play due to an upper-body injury.

The game started off at a good pace. The Knights got the better of the Jets in the first period outscoring them 2-1 and 17-14 in shots. Lots of chances for both teams in the opening frame.

Cody Eakin had a fantastic goal swinging for a puck in the air and put it past Jets goaltender Hellebuyck right in front. That was a big goal for him after taking a penalty that led to a Winnipeg goal five minutes in. Brendan Leipsic and Colin Miller assisted on Eakins fourth of the season.

William Karlsson broke through once again for his 14th goal of the season where he tipped a Nate Schmidt shot that Hellebuyck had no chance to save. Karlsson’s tear should lead to an All-Star Game appearance. It would be Karlsson’s first time at an NHL All-Star Game.

In the second period, Miller followed up with a goal for himself on the power play. He took a bomb of a shot, and it was one of the best shots I’ve ever seen from him. However, the Jets challenged the play for offsides, and the referees came to a decision, and there was offsides on the entry, therefore, no goal.

The game shifted the Jets way after that challenge. Matt Hendricks scored a beautiful goal going high stick side on Lagace for his third of the year. Then at the very end of the second, Oscar Lindberg took a high sticking penalty that carried over into the third period.

Kyle Connor scored 32 seconds in to give the Jets a 3-2 lead when Patrick Laine set up Connor beautifully in the slot. Two minutes later, Laine followed suit with a goal for himself that gave the Jets a two-goal lead. The Jets barrage of goals continued when Ehlers wrapped around the net and beat Lagace going post to post.

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Lagace got beat going post to post on wraparounds all night, but it didn’t burn him till the fifth goal. Teams are starting to figure out the book on Lagace. He’s starting to show why he was on the Golden Knights depth chart as the team’s fourth goaltender.

Erik Haula quickly answered back right away after beating Hellebuyck clean coming down the wing. Beautiful goal indeed, but it was too little too late. The Jets ended up defeating the Golden Knights by a score of 7-4. Miller got his goal back, but that didn’t come till garbage time towards the end of this one.

In the end, the Knights showed a ton of resilience, but Winnipeg vastly outplayed them for much of the game. Vegas just looked dead tired in the second half of that game, and the Jets capitalized on every opportunity. Perhaps the loss of Engelland’s leadership in the locker room played a factor in this game

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The Vegas Golden Knights will try to beak their three-game skid on Sunday night versus the Arizona Coyotes. And fortunately, the game is back at home at T-Mobile Arena where the Knights are at their best. Catch puck drop with Dave Goucher and Shane Hnidy as the Knights will go for some home cooking at 5 PM PT on AT&T Sportsnet.