There were a total of four games on NHL opening night. Fans have been waiting for this day for a long time and now it’s here. Wednesday night featured a pregame ceremony for the champions, the naming of a captain, a dominating performance, an overtime game and more. Night one of the season is over so let’s look at the two big stories from NHL opening night.
Two Big Stories From NHL Opening Night
The Capitals Play Spoiler
Usually, when a team plays spoiler it’s at the end of the season when playoff spots are to be determined but that wasn’t the case on Wednesday. On that night, the St. Louis Blues celebrated their Stanley Cup victory for the last time with a raising of the banner. Blues fans have been waiting for this night for over 50 years. To top it all off, a sold-out enterprise center wanted to see a Blues victory. Well, the Washington Capitals had other plans.
The Blues came out on fire, scoring two goals in the first period with one of them coming not even a minute into the game. Alex Ovechkin scored to make it a one-goal game in the first. They had a 2-0 lead but in hockey, that is never safe and the Capitals proved why. They tied it at two in the second on a goal by Dmitry Orlov and it stayed that way until overtime. In overtime, they looked determined to spoil the Blues night and they did with a goal by Jakub Vrana. The defending cup champions take a point out of this game but taking two on that night would’ve been ideal. These two teams will be very dangerous yet again as the season moves forward.
The Golden Knights Are For Real
A rematch of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs took place in Vegas last night. The San Jose Sharks and the Vegas Golden Knights rivalry is quickly becoming one of the best in hockey. There are a lot of storylines with these two teams. The Golden Knights take game one of the season series by the final of 4-1. It was a statement from Vegas that they will not be fazed by what happened in the playoffs last year or be fazed by their physicality. They looked very dangerous last night. They controlled all areas of the game and never took their foot off of the pedal. They scored twice in the first six minutes of the game. The Golden Knights scored two evens strength goals, a power-play, and a short-handed goal.
One of those goals game from their first-ever draft pick who was also making his NHL debut in Cody Glass. Reilly Smith had two goals and Mark Stone added a goal and an assist as well. The Golden Knights have skill all around that had the Sharks on their heels all night. The Sharks went 0-5 on the power play while trailing big in the scoring chances department 30-9. The Sharks were without defenseman Erik Karlsson due to a personal matter and Evander Kane due to a three-game suspension. These are two key paces out and the Golden Knights were able to capitalize. The Golden Knights are a cup contender in many eyes and yesterday sure helped.
The Final Horn
There were some other intriguing stories like Leon Draisaitl and Connor McDavid dominating yet again for the Edmonton Oilers, John Tavaras becoming captain for the Toronto Maple Leafs, and Auston Matthews having yet another great opening night. There are a lot more storylines to come throughout the season but opening night will be one of many.
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