Las Vegas–It was like taking the perfect script from your favorite movie and everything coming together and wrapped in a bow. Well, tonight for the Vegas Golden Knights organization and the city that’s exactly what happened as the franchise made history.
Vegas Golden Knights fans came to the epicenter to pay their respects to the first responders that were affected by the horrific tragedy that took place last week on Sunday, October 1 at the Route 91 Harvest Festival.
Before the historic knight kicked off fans had the pleasure of taking part in the pre-game festivities outside at Toshiba Plaza and experience the NHL Centennial Fan Arena, the Gold Carpet, and the inaugural march that took place under the Brooklyn Bridge at MGM’s property New York New York.
Deryk Engelland’s Powerful Pregame Keynote Speech “Vegas Strong”
For Vegas resident and Golden Knights defenseman Deryk Engelland tonight was more than just a hockey game for him, it was about being “Vegas Strong” and for the community and before the contest against the Arizona Coyotes, he provided a keynote speech with emotion that made your throat lump up.
Go Knights Go Chant!!!
Inaugural Home Opener Face Off
In the games opening period, the Golden Knights attack game was on point probably with some inspiration and motivation from that very moving keynote speech from defenseman Engelland and they set terms.
History Struck For Vegas
At the games 2:19 mark Golden Knights forward Tomas Nosek made history when he scored the 1st ever regular season goal for the organization.
Nosek’s goal was made possible by his speed down the ice and in doing so, his quick shot went far side at beat Coyotes goaltender Antti Raanta to give the Golden Knights the early 1-0 lead.
The fans at T-Mobile Arena erupted after Nosek struck first for the Golden Knights.
Engelland’s 1st As A Vegas Golden Knights Player
But for the home team, they were not done scoring goals when defenseman Engelland joined in on the offense at the 4:18 mark when Brandon Leipsic found the veteran blueliner and courtesy of the one-timer shot put the puck past Raanta and extended Vegas’s lead to 2. Leipsic recorded his 1st assist of the game off of Engelland’s goal.
The Golden Knights were still not satisfied with just 2 goals in the game so they went on asking for another one and this time it was from “The Real Deal” forward James Neal put a wrister past Raanta and recorded his 4th of the season and scoring in three straight games at 6:16 mark and made 3-0 Vegas.
Neal’s first of the game would chase starter for Arizona Raanta from the net and the Coyotes made a goalie swap for backup Louis Domingue.
8:11 Of The First Period
For the Golden Knights team, they really like making history in spades and it was Neal that stepped up again for Vegas and knotted his 2nd of the game at 8:11 to give the home team a 4-0 convincing lead on the power play.
The Golden Knights finally solved their power play woes with Neal’s goal.
Neal’s 2nd Of The Knight
It seems like for Neal, history just followed him since being with the Golden Knights, he scores the first regular campaign goal, first overtime winning goal, and tonight, he scored the franchises first regular season power play goal.
Historical Stat Fact For James Neal & The Vegas Golden Knights
2nd Goal of The Knight for Neal stapled his name in hockey history joining Real Cloutier of the Quebec Nordiques to score 5 goals in the first 3 games of the season with an expansion franchise
The visiting Coyotes would get on the board at the 12:37 mark of the first period when forward Tobias Rieder scored his 2nd goal against the Golden Knights and snapped Marc-André Fleury’s shutout bid and made it a 4-1 score.
Lindberg’s Tally In The 2nd Period
For the most of the middle frame, it was pretty quiet at T-Mobile until the late stages of the period when Swedish forward Oscar Lindberg made it 5-1 Vegas courtesy of a beautiful crossbar shot that beat Domingue at 17:22.
Lindberg’s tally came off of sweet no-look backhand pass play by Leipsic that knotted his 2nd helper of the game.
In the final period of the game, the Coyotes would score their 2nd and final goal of the night Kevin Connauton that brought the contests score to 5-2 which would be the games final score.
At the end of a historic knight for Vegas, the Golden Knights became the first ever franchise in the league’s 100-year history to open their inaugural season with a 3-0-0 start.
Another major milestone that the organization achieved tonight was that Neal became the 2nd player in NHL history to score a GWG in each of his club’s first 3 GP in any regular-season (Propp: 1982-83 w/ PHI). Per NHL Public Relations Twitter.
Post Game Celebration From the Fans And The Vegas Golden Knights
3 Stars Of The Game
Vegas Golden Knights: Deryk Engelland (Inspiration Pre-Game Keynote Speech/1 goal)
Vegas Golden Knights: James Neal (2 goals)
Vegas Golden Knights: Brandon Leipsic (2 assists)