You can’t be a hockey fan without knowing who Vegas is. We are halfway through the regular season to playoffs and it is starting to show which teams will come out on top. With breaking many expansion team records in their inaugural season, the Vegas Golden Knights did not fail to excite their fan base. With a record of 18-2-1 at home, takes the best home record in the league after beating the New York Rangers on Sunday which was the team's record attendance at a whopping 18,209. The only losses Vegas has at home are against the Detroit Red Wings, the Dallas Stars, and losing 3-2 in a shootout to the Carolina Hurricanes.
Since the Knights started off with a 4-0 start to their first season people have been talking about their chances at the cup. Or do they even have a chance? Before the pre-season started, Vegas had a 200-1 chance of winning the cup. Throughout the pre-season that number jumped up and down as high as 500-1. Now, we are halfway through the season and Vegas sits at the top of not only their division, but the conference too with a 12-1 chance of winning it all. The only team ahead of Vegas in the standings is the powerful Steven Stamkos and Tampa Bay Lightning just three points in front with one more game played.
Some hockey fanatics could have expected this performance from the newest expansion team because the rules have changed since the most recent expansion draft in 2000 with the Minnesota Wild and the Columbus Blue Jackets. Vegas was allowed to pick 30 players (one from each team) while every other team was allowed two choices. The first choice was to protect seven forwards, three defensemen, and one goalie, or the second choice was to protect eight skaters and a goalie. Vegas had their restrictions too with being allowed to pick 14 forwards, 9 defensemen, and 3 goaltenders.
Overall, Vegas has surprised the entire NHL with their performance and will continue with their success. They have been rapidly rising to the top of their division and could become the league's best soon. As the season has quickly progressed, Vegas has found a way to increase their chance at becoming the first expansion team to win a cup in their first year. The unlikeliness of them winning is incredible, but anything can happen in hockey as we have seen in the past. Early in the season, the five goalie injuries did not stop them and gave them a big push forward to continue succeeding. At this point it is likely that Vegas will make playoffs, but how far exactly will they go? Can they win the cup? Who can take them down to stop the record breaking team?
By Gabe Kirsch