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New York Rangers at Golden Knights: Keys & Quotes

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Here are three keys to the game.

1. House always wins

Vegas has built a league leading 17-2-1 mark when playing at T-Mobile Arena with a combination of fast starts and complete games. Vegas is one of the best skating teams in the NHL and when they have their feet moving early - they're tough to beat. The Rangers played Saturday night in Arizona - winning 2-1 in the shootout - while Vegas rested at home. The Rangers have been busy of late needing overtime or a shootout in four of their last five games. Vegas has won nine of its last 10 games and own a 28-10-2 record which is best in the Western Conference.

2. Pacific punch

The Rangers are 7-1-0 this season against Pacific Division opponents including a 6-4 win over Vegas back on Oct. 31st. Vegas led 4-2 after two periods in that game only to allow the Rangers to pop four goals in the third period. The game was Maxime Legace's first NHL start. The Rangers sit third in the Metro Division with a 22-14-5 mark and are led in scoring by Mats Zuccarello who has eight goals and 23 assists.

3. Turk is tops

Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant was named Pacific Division coach for the NHL all-star game on Sunday morning. Gallant's club leads the division in points percentage with a .725. Gallant has done a brilliant job leading the expansion Golden Knights taking a group of players brought together through the expansion draft, free agency, trades and waiver claims this past off-season. Gallant is an inclusive coach and assistants Ryan McGill, Mike Kelly, Ryan Craig, Tom Cruz and Dave Prior all share in the success this team has achieved. Coaches around the NHL have been pointing to the work ethic and team structure in Vegas all season. That's coaching. Gallant has gotten the most out of a group which is more talented than people realized. He's given opportunity to everyone on his roster, fostered two-way trust and built a culture of accountability. 

Morning skate quotes

NYR did not skate but VGK did and here's a sampling of post-workout sound from City National Arena:


What's it like being back…

Obviously it's good to be back. It's totally understandable. The guys are playing really well. Tough luck for

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, you never want to see something like that happen. So I just want to go out there and work as hard as I can, and kinda do it for the guys that are sitting out.

After not being in for a while, what areas can you focus on to keep things smooth…

I think it's kinda keep it simple. Not try to do too much. Just take it when it's there and if it's not there don't force anything. Obviously our coaches have been great with the skates after, and skill stuff. So I think it's going to be good. I'm excited to get back in.

Asking about playing being the true joy of hockey…

That's why we play, is to play. OBviously it's tough when you sit out, but like you said, it's all a part of it. I'm a professional, and we're a big family here so you root for you brothers and I know they'll do the same for me.


Talking about being a new dad…

It's tough to describe really. IT's the best achievement we ever made, for both of us. A little bit of stress in the beginning, obviously. You feel kinda like you can't help that much. But everything has been, not even a roller coaster. Just slowly building up, it's unbelievable. To be honest there was no negative energy whatsoever.

What was it like to be healthy at home and watching your team play…

I've been a scratch before, but this was different. I've never been a scratch and lost focus of the game. I started to watch the first game, and then he needed to get changed, and I went to change him. And then I realized two hours after the game, oh snap the game ended. So it's a different feeling, it's unbelievable.

Now that you're back in is it hard to get your focus on hockey…

You know what, a little bit. I've never been the kind of guy… I've made my career and been successful by being the kind of guy who comes early and stayed after for a longer time. For the first time yesterday I came back and started going on the ice and after five minutes I was like "jesh I have to hurry home", which I was never like before. So it's a little bit different, but I have to do a little bit of adjustments. 


Does your success as a coach being picked for the All Star Game have a lot to do with your staff…

Definitely. Obviously the guys work hard all year, and you look at the team and we're in a good place right now. We're playing well, we're working hard. And for us to get the opportunity to coach for the all star game it's a privilege to represent our organization. It's not about me, it's about the guys in the room that work hard every day. The other coaches, the goalie coaches… But the big thing is our player responded and we're playing really well. So I think it's great for our organization that we get the opportunity for sure.

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