Vegas won the Pacific Division by eight points, a cakewalk in today's three-point National Hockey League era.
The '78 Jets not only steamrolled through their season, winning the AVCO Cup in four straight games over Gordie Howe and the New England Whalers, they also became the first North American team to defeat the mighty Soviet national team, without a doubt the strongest team in the world at the time, when they won 5-3 on January 5, 1978, at Winnipeg Arena.
"The goal of our practice was to put us in the best position to be ready to play (Monday night)", Cooper said. Wrong. How about Florida's GM completely underestimated his own roster and actively gave up two good young players for nothing.
And with his numbers, who's to argue?
Behind stunning performances nightly from goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury, Vegas is advancing to the Western Conference Final to face the Winnipeg Jets as the greatest expansion team that ever was.
"It's a moment that I believe all of us are going to cherish for the rest of our lives".
With only four remaining teams, all a mere eight wins away from capturing Lord Stanley's Cup, odds have dramatically shortened. The Golden Knights had four players finish with at least 60 points this season, led by William Karlsson (43 goals, 35 assists). And he's still working to refine his game.
"It's just one game", Burns said. And to think: Vrana played a tad under seven minutes in Washington's opening playoff game, then was a healthy scratch for the second.
"We have a good bunch of guys, we've been through a lot together this year", Fleury said Sunday.
"He hasn't changed at all".
"I haven't seen an empty seat in our building in seven years and we have only made the playoffs twice", Wheeler said. "Loves being around the team, loves playing hockey".
Upon hearing about the death last of week of former Islanders General Manager Bill Torrey at 83, I started to think back to the late spring of 1972, when the franchise was created. Jets likely have a better blue liner, but the Knights D has exceeded expectations.
Much of the same can be said for Vegas, which looked nothing like the team that opened its second-round series with a 7-0 shellacking of.
"He's one of the better teammates we have in the room", Perron said.
The expansion draft was a really fun time last summer for NHL fans and not so much for NHL GMs. "He always brings excitement to the rink every day".
The potent Jets offense saw Paul Stastny and Mark Scheifele score two times each with Tyler Myers joining the scoring column. After scoring only seven goals in the four games against Los Angeles, they exploded for 22 in the Semifinals, so opposing netminder Connor Hellebuyck has his work cut out for him.
"They're good. They're obviously one of the best lines out there", said Fleury. The Jets will play the Knights games 3 and 4 Wednesday and Friday at the T-Mobile Arena. Staying out of the box is probably the main thing so we don't give them too many opportunities on the power play. They have been very strong at the defensive end of the ice, during the postseason, as they come in ranked 1st in goals allowed, giving up 1.70 gpg, while also ranking 13th in shots allowed (34.4 spg) and 2nd in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 15.0% of their chances.
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