Vegas Golden Knights Details
For the first time since the year 2000, the National Hockey League is going to have a brand new team. The 2017-18 season will mark the first for the new Golden Knights franchise in Las Vegas, Nevada. The first-ever major professional sports team in Vegas, the Golden Knights team has had an exciting start to its NHL life. Back in June, Vegas participated in its expansion draft, selecting a player from each of the league’s 30 teams, in order to help make up a roster for its inaugural season. The Golden Knights were able to steal away some exciting players from these other rosters, including former Florida Panthers center Jonathan Marchessault. Marchessault was a star for the Panthers last season, finishing the year with 30 goals and 21 assists in 75 games. Other impactful players include former Predator winger James Neal, who had an up-and-down 2016-17, finishing with 23 goals and 18 assists despite missing 12 games with injury. Vegas also got a solid starting goaltender in Marc-Andre Fleury, who was an integral part of the Pittsburgh Penguins’ goaltending tandem that won two straight Stanley Cups.
Surely, the Knights won’t be a star team right away, as it can be tough for expansion teams to find their footing with these cobbled together rosters. However, the team is in good hands thanks to the hiring of former Panthers head coach Gerard Gallant, who was surprisingly shown the door part-way through the 2016-17 season despite leading Florida to a 103-point year back in 2015-16. He’ll be a welcomed presence behind the bench and should help the Vegas players, especially the younger guys, find their footing under the bright lights of T-Mobile Arena.