Last season, the Golden Knights suited up 20 times during the postseason as the league's newest franchise marched to the Stanley Cup Final.
During the course of that run, 11 Vegas players on the current roster skated in all 20 games while another seven got a smaller taste of last year's brand of playoff hockey.
The Golden Knights have five players that were not part of the club last season that bring their own unique playoff pasts to San Jose as Vegas gears up to play Game 1 of the First Round. Max Pacioretty is one of the new Golden Knights who will begin a new chapter in his Stanley Cup Playoff career with Vegas against the Sharks.
In 38 career playoff games with the Montreal Canadiens, Pacioretty posted 19 points (10G, 9A) and gained experience playing in intense games with an entire season on the line. He said that each rivalry is different in the playoffs and that anything can happen against any team.
"The series against Boston were pretty crazy," Pacioretty said. "When you're in those emotional series, you have to make sure you stay in the moment. One time specifically, I remember coming back to win Game 6 at home and then winning Game 7 in Boston. It's important to look back at that experience and that mindset and use that in these heated situations."
Pacioretty wants to take what he learned in past postseasons and use it to help the Golden Knights have a spring to remember. As Vegas prepares to take on the Sharks, the regular season matchups between the two clubs will be present in each player's mind.
"It'll be two good teams out there with a lot of offense," he said. "As we saw in our last game against them, there is the potential for some emotional games. Who knows what's going to present itself."
Any Golden Knight will tell you that the team just has to focus on playing its own game well to be successful. While Vegas will do everything possible to impose its will on San Jose, the ebbs and flows of a hockey game can be unpredictable and Pacioretty is confident that he and his teammates are prepared to read and react to what the Sharks have done well all season.
"It's not like we're just going to go out there and trade hits," said Pacioretty. "There is a lot of offense all over the ice. We have to try to contain their guys by playing the right way. We'll want to make life hard on them when they have the puck and when we have the puck."