As the National Hockey League approaches it’s centennial anniversary, the Vegas Golden Knights are off to the best start by expansion team in NHL history. Over the last 27 years, the NHL has introduced 10 expansion teams. The first being the San Jose Sharks in 1991-92, followed the next season by the Ottawa Senators and the Tampa Bay Lightning. The 1993-94 season saw the addition of The Florida Panthers and the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim. Starting in the 1998-99 season, the NHL once again began adding expansion teams. These new teams consisted of the Nashville Predators, Atlanta Thrashers (now Winnipeg Jets 2.0), Columbus Blue Jackets, and the Minnesota Wild. The 2017-18 season is the inaugural season of the Vegas Golden Knights.
So how are the Golden Knights making NHL history? Through 8 games, they have a record of 7-1-0. Since expansion began with the San Jose Sharks, only three teams have won more than a single game of their first 7. They were the Lightning, Panthers, and the Mighty Ducks. Considering the Vegas Golden Knights’ roster is made from other NHL team’s cast-offs, this is an impressive feat! Vegas is currently 2nd in the Pacific Division of the Western Conference and only a single point behind the L.A. Kings.
How are the Golden Knights pulling off this amazing feat? James Neal looks more like his former self and already has 6 goals on the year. Neal is leading the Golden Knights in goals and points, the second place goal scorer is Oscar Lindberg with three. Reilly Smith and Luca Sbisa are leading in the assist department with 5 a piece. Vegas as scored a total of 27 goals while only giving up 19. Through 8 games, Vegas has a collective Save Percentage of 0.930 with a Goals Against Average of 2.32
Hopefully this historic run continues for the Vegas Golden Knights. No expansion team has made the NHL playoffs in their first season. Could the Golden Knights be the first? Time will tell!