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Morning Skate Report: March 9, 2020

Golden Knights and Oilers square off in Edmonton

by Gordon Weigers @GoldenKnights / VegasGoldenKnights.com

With first place in the Pacific Division on the line, the Vegas Golden Knights (38-24-8) visit the Edmonton Oilers (37-24-8) on Monday night at Rogers Place.

NOTES
Monday's game is the second of a back-to-back for the Golden Knights and is the third game of a five-game trip.

The Golden Knights are visiting the Oilers for the first time this season on Monday. They'll make their final trip to Edmonton on March 31.

BROADCAST INFORMATION
TV: AT&T SportsNet
Radio: FOX Sports 98.9/1340

LAST TIME OUT
The Golden Knights snuck past the Calgary Flames with a 5-3 win on Sunday night at ScotiaBank Saddledome. Shea Theodore scored with 1:10 to go to put Vegas ahead before Jonathan Marchessault's empty-net tally. Tomas Nosek, Nick Holden and Max Pacioretty also scored for the Golden Knights.

A VEGAS VICTORY WOULD…

- Mark the 134th win in franchise history
- Bring Vegas to 2-1-0 on their road trip

STATE OF THE PACIFIC
With their win Sunday, the Golden Knights moved back into sole possession of first place in the division with 84 points. The Oilers sit in second with 82 points while the Flames hold third place with 79 points. Vancouver has fallen into the second wildcard spot with 76 points while Arizona has been pushed down to three spots out of playoff position with 74 points.

20 GOAL CLUB
Through 70 games, the Golden Knights have four players with 20-or-more goals. Pacioretty is the team leader with 32 tallies while Reilly Smith (27G), Mark Stone (21G) and Marchessault (21G) round out the club. Paul Stastny has 17 goals and William Karlsson is sitting on 15 goals and the two are looking to join the club by season's end.

OPPOSITION UPDATE
The Oilers have surged to the upper echelon of the Pacific Division as they sit just behind Vegas at 82 points. Edmonton is 3-1-0 this month including an 8-3 win in Nashville on March 2.

Leon Draisaitl leads the NHL in scoring with 110 points (43G, 67A) with teammate Connor McDavid behind him at 96 points (33G, 63A). Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has clicked just under a point-per-game pace with 60 points (21G, 39A) in 63 games.

KEYS TO THE GAME
The Usual: The key to defeating Edmonton starts and ends with shutting down Draisaitl and McDavid. That will be the top priority Monday night.

A Tale of Two Starts: The Golden Knights had a tough start Friday in Winnipeg, but a strong start Sunday in Calgary. It will be important to recreate that effort from the win against the Flames, just 300 kilometres to the north.

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