Sunday, 24 June, 2018

Vegas jackpot: Knights' win would mean $20000 for Tampa man

Bruce Bennett  Getty Images Bruce Bennett Getty Images
Betsy Taylor | 02 June, 2018, 04:15

Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby made an incredible save Wednesday night, robbing Golden Knights forward Alex Tuch in the third period to lift Washington to a 3-2 win in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final.

The Washington players have apparently been engaged in hours-long video game tournaments, headlined by Mario Kart, and have been watching the National Basketball Association playoffs.

The Russian centre, who skated quickly to the bench and went straight to the locker room, did not return with what the team called an upper-body injury.

The Russian centre, who leads the overall National Hockey League playoff scoring race with 25 points (11 goals, 14 assists), skated off Wednesday night and went straight to the locker-room favouring his left arm after the crushing first-period collision that saw him tumble to the ice along the boards.

With temperatures soaring as high as 37 C in the hours leading up to the late-afternoon puck drop at T-Mobile Arena, the Capitals put in a much better effort on the heels of Monday's sloppy performance from both teams.

Beyond the "How good will he be?" questions, most fans want to know where he'll go.

Game three takes place in Washington on Saturday. But the focus was squarely on Kuznetsov, who didn't seem to be favouring anything as he went through a series of drills with teammates.


"We shot ourselves in the foot a few times with some turnovers", Golden Knights defenseman Nate Schmidt said. "He's a big piece of our team". Jonathan Marchessault doesn't have the puck, he's in front of Wilson and Wilson is behind him, all boxes checked. "You see that kind of develop in your mind, you're thinking there's no way that bounces to them across the crease and then comes back across".

A goal from the most unlikely source and a jaw-dropping save has the Washington Capitals back on even terms in the Stanley Cup final.

Washington and Vegas combined to score at least two goals in each period of the opener and in the first and second periods of Game 2. I don't care who they play against. You get an all-in mentality. It's the first Cup Final game hosted by the Capitals in 7,291 days (since June 16, 1998). "He's a veteran player who has good hockey sense, and he's strong on the puck, and I think his game translates well in the playoffs". "Everybody's excited in Washington. It's always fun going to the Final, me and Steve Levy (at ESPN) and doing the Final, it's great". "That's why we worked so hard to be in this spot and be in this moment". Andre Burakovsky chipped in with two assists of his own as the Capitals won their first-ever game in a Stanley Cup final.

For the newbies, the futures book represents betting on teams to reach a certain milestone, like win a championship - rather than winning one specific game. Many planned to simply soak up the atmosphere while watching the game on big screens outside the arena with thousands of new friends. It's just the way it works out sometimes. "We just. play on instincts". "We really need to simplify things".

Imagine Dragons kicked up the pregame festivities a notch, playing its hit "Whatever It Takes", following the Vegas Golden Knights' elaborate show that precedes each game.

Kuznetsov suffered the injury on a hard hit by the Golden Knights' Braden McNabb with just more than five minutes to play in the first period.

"We were that close", Vegas forward James Neal said. "You lose one of your top players on what we feel is a questionable hit". At this point, especially with this city so different than any other. they have a bond and have formed a pact that we're not here for pleasure.

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