With a bit more than a month remaining in the regular season, losing Stone “week-to-week” sounds both scary and vague. Golden Knights Peter DeBoer notes that the team hopes Stone can return before the end of the regular season.
No doubt about it, this is a big loss. Stone generated 21 goals and 63 points so far in 65 games, continuing to draw more deserved attention as a Selke-worthy forward. Even so, you could argue that people still aren’t fully aware of how dominant Stone can be.
— JFresh (@JFreshHockey) March 1, 2020
This ranks as a significant blow to the Golden Knights, and a frustrating one at that.
It’s been a turbulent season for Vegas, the toughest one in what’s somehow just the third campaign in the franchise’s existence. The Golden Knights are currently red-hot with an eight-game winning streak, seemingly finally putting everything together. And now they lost their two-way star.
Golden Knights hope to hold onto Pacific with Stone out week-to-week
To be clear, the Golden Knights still stand in a good position to win the up-and-down Pacific Division.
Yes, it could be worse, especially if Stone being out week-to-week translates to him still having time to get a few regular-season games in before the playoffs.
There’s also something to be said that the Golden Knights will be forced to find answers beyond Stone. Maybe they’ll stumble into different combinations that could work if matchups get dicey during the playoffs? Perhaps losing a key player will push the Golden Knights to see how much they can lean on Robin Lehner?
Overall, it’s clear this is very bad for the Golden Knights, who have spent big to contend in 2019-20.