NHL.com is providing in-depth analysis for each of its 31 teams throughout August. Today, three key statistics for the Vegas Golden Knights.
[Golden Knights 31 IN 31: Season preview | 3 Questions | Top prospects | Fantasy breakdown]
1. Fleury's shutouts, save percentage
Marc-Andre Fleury's eight shutouts last season were second in the NHL behind Sergei Bobrovsky's nine for the Columbus Blue Jackets. His 12 shutouts the past two seasons were tied for third with Pekka Rinne of the Nashville Predators and Ben Bishop of the Dallas Stars behind Bobrovsky and Andrei Vasilevskiy of the Tampa Bay Lightning, who each had 14 in that span. Fleury's 2.40 goals-against average the past two seasons was second behind Rinne's (2.37) among the 20 NHL goalies who played at least 100 games. His .919 save percentage was fourth among the 20 goalies in that span, and his .923 even-strength save percentage was eighth. It's worth noting that defenseman Colin Miller, who was traded to the Buffalo Sabres on June 28, had a plus-479 shot attempts differential the past two seasons to lead the Golden Knights. His departure could have a negative impact on Fleury.
Video: Top 10 saves of 2018-19: Fleury
2. Points per 60 for Pacioretty, Stone, Stastny
Left wing Max Pacioretty led the NHL with 4.82 points per 60 minutes in the Stanley Cup Playoffs last season, right wing Mark Stone was second with 4.77 points per 60, and center Paul Stastny was ninth with 3.40. Their chemistry was on display against the San Jose Sharks in the Western Conference First Round, when they combined for 31 points (13 goals, 18 assists) in seven games and emerged as the Golden Knights' most productive line.
3. Power-play percentage
The Golden Knights power play was 25th in the NHL during the 2018-19 regular season (16.8 percent) but was second in the playoffs (27.6 percent). During the regular season, Jonathan Marchessault (2:41), Pacioretty (2:32), Alex Tuch (2:30) and Reilly Smith (2:27) led their forwards in power-play ice time per game (minimum 50 games), but in the postseason, Vegas made adjustments and utilized Tuch (3:14), Pacioretty (3:10), Stone (3:07) and Stastny (3:06) as its prominent forward group with the man-advantage. Because of the success after the change, the Golden Knights likely will keep the new unit together to start this season.
Video: 31 in 31: Vegas Golden Knights 2019-20 season preview
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