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Morning Skate Report: February 28, 2020

Vegas seeks eighth in a row vs. Buffalo

by Gordon Weigers @GoldenKnights / VegasGoldenKnights.com

The Vegas Golden Knights (35-22-8) have the opportunity to match a franchise record eight-game win streak as they go up against the Buffalo Sabres (29-26-8) on Friday at 7 p.m. at T-Mobile Arena.

NOTES
Vegas signed forward William Carrier to a four-year contract extension Thursday morning.

The Golden Knights will conclude their season series with the Sabres on Friday. Buffalo won the only previous matchup on Jan. 14, 4-2, in Buffalo.

Gage Quinney was recalled from the Chicago Wolves on Thursday afternoon.

BROADCAST INFORMATION
TV: AT&T SportsNet (SAP Available)
Radio: FOX Sports 98.9/1340 | Deportes Vegas

LAST TIME OUT
Marc-Andre Fleury posted his fifth shutout of the season to drive the Golden Knights to a 3-0 win against the Edmonton Oilers and their seventh win in a row. Max Pacioretty, Nick Cousins and Shea Theodore each found the back of the net for Vegas while Alec Martinez recorded two assists.

A VEGAS VICTORY WOULD…

  • Be the 131st win in franchise history
  • Equal the longest win streak in franchise history of eight games (Dec. 14, 2017 to Jan. 2, 2018)

INSIDE THE STREAK
After falling to the Minnesota Wild on Feb. 11, the Golden Knights returned to T-Mobile Arena with a five-game homestand ahead of them. Vegas opened the homestand with a 6-5 overtime victory against the St. Louis Blues on Feb. 13 before earning a 1-0 win against the New York Islanders on Feb. 15. The Golden Knights collected a 3-2 win against the Washington Capitals on Feb. 17 before claiming their fourth win in a row against Tampa Bay. The homestand concluded with a 5-3 victory against the Florida Panthers to bring the streak to five and Vegas followed it up with a 6-5 win against Anaheim one night later. The Golden Knights won their seventh game in a row Wednesday night with a 3-0 win against the Edmonton Oilers.

STATE OF THE PACIFIC
Vegas' seven-game win streak has propelled the team to a four-point lead in the Pacific Division standings. Vancouver (74 points) and Edmonton (74 points) remain in second and third, respectively, while Calgary (72 points) occupies the first wildcard spot.

OPPOSITION UPDATE
Buffalo hopes to keep its playoff chances alive down the stretch as the Sabres sit 10 points back of the Columbus Blue Jackets for the second wildcard spot. The Sabres have found some success of late with a 6-3-1 record in their last 10 games, but they enter Friday's game after falling to the Colorado Avalanche, 3-2, on Wednesday.

Jack Eichel has been the team's most-valuable player with 77 points (35G, 42A) in 62 games. He has 27 more points than Sam Reinhart (50 points) who ranks second on the team in scoring. Rookie forward Victor Olofsson is working on a strong rookie season with 40 points (19G, 21A).

KEYS TO THE GAME
Contain the Captain: Buffalo's offense flows through Jack Eichel. He recorded a goal and an assist against Vegas when the teams met on Jan. 14 and it will be important for the Golden Knights to keep him quiet on Friday.

Continue the Streak: Vegas' win streak has the chance to reach eight games Friday night. While the consecutive victories are impressive, the points that the Golden Knights are adding to their column in the standings are crucial in the tight Pacific Division race.

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