Golden Knights News & Rumors: Eichel, Stone, Whitecloud & More

In this edition of Vegas Golden Knights News & Rumors, rumors around acquiring Jack Eichel have gained some serious traction over the past few days. In other news, the Golden Knights’ injury troubles continue as they announced earlier this week that defenceman Zach Whitecloud will miss time with a lower-body injury. Speaking on “The Chirp with Daren Millard” podcast this past week, Robin Lehner spoke as to why he loves playing in Vegas. Last but not least, a surprisingly slow start has many questioning what exactly is wrong with this team’s power play.

Eichel a Legitimate Possibility

There have been no shortages of Eichel rumors as of late, with several different teams being in the running. One of the main teams involved is the Golden Knights, and according to a recent report, they may be at the top of the list.

Jack Eichel Buffalo Sabres
Jack Eichel, Buffalo Sabres (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

According to Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff, the Golden Knights are the team to watch right now involving a potential Eichel trade. Unfortunately, however, the status of that trade could depend on Mark Stone’s injury. Seravalli mentioned the strange wording from the team when the injury first occurred saying it was somewhere between day-to-day and week-to-week and indicated that he himself believes Stone may be out long-term.

Whitecloud on the Shelf

The Golden Knights have been ravaged by injuries lately, and the latest to go down was Whitecloud. The 24-year-old was injured during Friday nights 5-3 loss to the Edmonton Oilers, and he is said to be week-to-week with an upper-body injury. He joins fellow defenceman Alec Martinez on the shelf, along with Stone and Max Pacioretty.

Related: Golden Knights’ Slow Start Reveals Troubling Trends

“It is what it is,” said head coach Peter DeBoer when asked about his team’s injury situation. “Everybody deals with it, and I’d rather deal with it now than later. We’re going to use it to learn about our group.”

In large part due to their injuries, the Golden Knights got off to a slow start this season. However, they appear to be turning things around after winning games Tuesday night against the Colorado Avalanche and Wednesday night versus the Dallas Stars. Expect them to battle with the likes of the Edmonton Oilers for the top spot in the Pacific Division this season.

Lehner Speaks About His Love for Golden Knights Organization

Appearing on The Chirp with Daren Millard earlier this week, Lehner spoke up about why he loves playing in Vegas, amongst other things. The 30-year-old is getting his true first shot at being the Golden Knights goaltender after Marc-Andre Fleury was dealt to the Chicago Blackhawks this offseason, and while he may be excited about the opportunity on the inside, he doesn’t like being referred to as the team’s number one, as he feels it is disrespectful to his goalie partner in Laurent Brossoit.

“Brasser’s a really good goalie,” Lehner said when asked about his status as the team’s starting netminder. “He’s coming here to push me and I’m pushing him. It’s no different [from when] I got traded here and they started me, and I was the starter in the bubble (2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs). I started opening night last season. It was a little bit of a special season with no [training] camp, so we started splitting. Then I got injured and Fleury had a [heck] of a year. It was planned that I was going to play a lot more, but I got injured.

Robin Lehner Vegas Golden Knights
Robin Lehner, Vegas Golden Knights (Photo by Dave Sandford/NHLI via Getty Images)

“And that’s how it should be. At the end of the day, if I don’t play well and Brasser plays well, I expect him to play. It’s nothing different now than any of the other years I played with a lot of good goalies. If I don’t have a good year this year, it’s pretty likely I’m not on the team that next year. That’s what I love about this team. They do everything to win.”

Power Play Struggles Continuing

For reasons no one can seem to figure out, the Golden Knights power play is in complete disarray. This isn’t a new issue either, as they struggled on the man advantage in 2020-21 as well, ranking 22nd in the league with a success rate of just 17.8%.

This season has been even worse. Through seven games, they have had 15 opportunities on the man advantage, but have yet to convert on a single one. It is quite shocking given the talent they have in the lineup, even with their current injuries. It is an aspect of their game they will need to drastically improve if they hope to have any shot at a Stanley Cup at season’s end.

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