The Golden Knights are still playing for first place, which would mean home ice throughout in the West and avoiding Minnesota in the first round. A win over the Avalanche tonight and it’s also a President’s Trophy.
They’ll try to clinch all of that while shorthanded.
Due to salary cap restrictions and injuries, Vegas is dressing just 10 forwards and five defensemen in Monday night’s game with Colorado.
Golden Knights general manager Kelly McCrimmon told reporters before the game that Peyton Krebs is dealing with a broken jaw and out indefinitely, while Alec Martinez and Max Pacioretty also are out of the lineup, in addition to Ryan Reaves and Tomas Nosek. Krebs had surgery yesterday after his jaw was fractured by a puck.
McCrimmon told reporters on Monday night the Golden Knights had the option to play without Krebs and have a full lineup, but because of his cap hit couldn’t play an additional skater. They’ve played with 17 skaters for the past three contests.
McCrimmon says that the team has had the option to play with a full lineup for the last week and chose to play Peyton Krebs instead of two other skaters (his cap number is higher)
— Justin Emerson (@J15Emerson) May 11, 2021
There have been teams in recent memory who played without one or two players due to restrictions and sudden injuries making it impossible to add anyone, but playing with 15 skaters is almost unheard of. Especially in a game that carries meaning so late in the season.
Pacioretty has been out with an undisclosed injury, while Reaves has been out since April 11 and Nosek has missed two weeks.
There’s no salary cap in the playoffs, luckily for Vegas. For now, they want to get through the end of the year as unscathed as possible. Perhaps the high prices may cost them in the short term, though.