(Photo by Stephen R. Sylvanie/ USA TODAY Sports)

Las Vegas–Ahead of the St. Louis Blues vs. Vegas Golden Knights game, we caught up with forward Ryan Reaves on facing his former team that drafted him and playoffs.

Since Reaves came over from the Pittsburgh Penguins he has been working on getting comfortable and transitioning away from the Eastern Conference style and back to type he’s been so accustomed to for so many years in the West when he played for St. Louis.

With the time he’s been a member of the Golden Knights, Reaves has played in 16 games with the bottom six forward group and has produced 2 assists, a plus/minus rating of +3, and has 10 penalty minutes to his credit.

He’s also has logged an average of less than 10 minutes of ice time per game.

Earlier today, he talked about what it’s been like for him playing for the NHL’s newest franchise, developing the bond with his new teammates to the 1st place in Pacific Division leader.

“It’s been easy, it’s an easy group to get along with, a lot of the same players, lot of the guys that have something to prove, you can see it in the game that they put on the ice, it’s been easy, I play my game and slot in wherever I can.” Reaves said.

The Golden Knights earlier in the week, clinched their first ever Stanley Cup Playoff berth by defeating the Colorado Avalanche 4-1 at home in front of 18,326 hockey fans and for the organization it was a special moment for them.

“It’s obviously fun, I’ve been used to the playoffs for the last couple years, it’s always fun getting in there and making them push, it’s the funniest time of the year, to be on a team with this much hype behind it, excitement in the city it’s special.” Reaves on the Golden Knights making the playoffs in year of franchise existence.

Reaves has 36 games of Stanley Cup Playoffs experience that he brings with to Vegas when he was a member of the St. Louis Blues organization that spans over 6 seasons from 2011 thru 2017. In that span, he collected a single point (1 goal), was a -3, and has 23 PIM’s.

With the Golden Knights in a good position come playoff time the need to be sharp is something that the team has to work in the last batch of games of the regular season and for Reaves he is no stranger to that concept.

“You still gotta get your reps in practice, you still gotta to work, playoffs get amped up and make sure your ready for it.” Says Reaves.

For Reaves this season as a member of the Pittsburgh Penguins, he’s played against the Blues three times, once in preseason and the 2 game season series where his former club earned a split.

“I got three of them out of the way already, we played them in exhibition and two during the season with Pittsburgh, the emotions are out of it now, obviously a lot of friends over there, 20 enemies for three hours.” Reaves on facing the Blues tonight.

Reaves has been known around the league to be one who talks some serious trash which is something that is an element of his game and for him, so he’s not afraid to be vocal on the ice when he takes his shift.

“Always, oh yeah it doesn’t change with the opponent.” Reaves said with confidence in his voice.

The physicality style for the St. Louis Blues has been very apparent over the years because they like to play a very physical game and entering into tonight’s contest at T-Mobile Arena they have dished out 1,731 hits total and they’ll be bringing that with them tonight.

“Their physical they got a lot of skill upfront and they’re desperate team right now, they’re holding onto that wild-card spot, they’re trying to stay in the playoffs, desperate team is a dangerous team and we gotta to make sure we play desperate.” Reaves on what he expects to see tonight vs. St. Louis.

Lately for the Golden Knights, the starts for them as group has not been good which has been something of a concern especially for Head Coach Gerard Gallant so tonight vs. the Blues the need to start on time is something of great importance for Vegas.

“Start fast, I mean that’s all you can do, you gotta to be ready when the puck drops, it’s hurt us the last couple of games, last week or two, we got to make sure were mentality prepared for the pace that’s going to be coming.” Reaves on the need for the Golden Knights to have that fast start they have been looking for lately.

These last several games of the regular campaign for the Golden Knights will play a role in the final prep for their first trip to the NHL’s second season and playing hungry and desperate should be one that is routine for them going forward.

“We got to be desperate, play desperate, we got to play hungry, we got to play playoff hockey because it starts in a week and a half, two weeks, if your not playing playoff hockey on the ice before the playoffs start it’s creeps up on you and it’s tough to jump right in.” Says Reaves.

For more on our interview with Reaves check out the video below.

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