In an ideal world, Gerard Gallant would watch his Vegas Golden Knights go 16-0 in the Stanley Cup Playoffs to claim the ultimate prize via the simplest route possible.
That's not how the playoffs work and Gallant is OK with that.
"It's one game at a time here," Gallant said. "You want to win as many games early in the series as you can. If we come home on the plane tonight tied 1-1, we will have achieved the cliché of 'we came for a split and that's what we got.'"
Gallant said he likes the way his team plays with the lead, but the Golden Knights haven't been able to do that through just one game in the postseason.
"I'd love for us to score first because it helps our game," said Gallant. "It would really help our club to score first tonight."
After the 5-2 loss in Game 1, Gallant said no one pointed fingers at one another but rather collectively realized the entire team had to play better. Though the team will not announce its Game 2 lineup until warmups ahead of the 7:30 p.m. puck drop, Gallant said he's been thinking about the personnel that will take the ice Friday since late Wednesday night.
"You start to think about that an hour after the last game," he said. "We put some things together, but it wasn't just two or three guys who didn't play well in Game 1. We'll see what we go with tonight, there might be a couple of game-time decisions."
The Golden Knights don't have their backs against the wall yet, but the road gets a lot rockier if Vegas isn't able to leave San Jose with a win. Gallant said he's confident that each player's commitment to the team is going to help them succeed.
"We win as a team, we lose as a team," Gallant said. "We need everybody going. In playoffs, you need to be ready to go. There are tough buildings to play in, we saw that the other night and we weren't good enough as a team. Adversity is good. Hopefully we play our best game tonight."