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Jake Muzzin Jersey
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WASHINGTON (AP) James Neal has become a source of leadership and inspiration for the Vegas Golden Knights during their improbable run to the Stanley Cup Final.So Drew Doughty Jersey , it came as no surprise that the 11-year veteran made a point of seeking out teammate Alex Tuch, a 22-year-old rookie who missed a chance to score the potential tying goal late in Game 2 against the Washington Capitals”I talked with him a little bit today,” Neal said Friday. ”It’s all good. He’ll get a bigger one for us later in the series. He’s been great for us so far, so no reason to think about that anymore. At the end of the day, it’s a great save and you move forward.”Braden Holby snuffed the shot with his goalie stick in a 3-2 victory that evened the series heading in Game 3 on Saturday night.Vegas snagged a winner when they selected Neal from Nashville last June in the expansion draft. They got a skilled forward who scored 20 goals in 10 straight seasons (now 11) and a player who turned out to be perfect for a team that had to mesh immediately to be successful.”He’s a natural leader,” Golden Knights right wing Ryan Reaves said. ”He likes leading the boys into battle. When he has something to say he’s going to say it, and people are going to listen.”Neal reached the Stanley Cup Final last year with the Predators, who lost to Pittsburgh. Now here he is again, with another crack at winning it all.”It’s a special team and a special group of guys,” Neal said. ”I’ve been to the finals before, so just try to give them little tips. I try to lead by example, do the right things on the ice. We’ve got a group that responds well.”Neal seriously wants to win, but he isn’t always serious. And that’s the way his teammates like it.”I’m not going to pump his tires too much because I don’t want to hear about it, but he’s definitely one of those guys that keeps it loose,” Reaves said. ”You need guys like that around the team. You can’t be 100 percent business-like all the time. You’ve got to have fun.”Vegas goaltender Marc Andre-Fleury is the only other player on the club who’s played in the Stanley Cup Final http://www.officialkings.com/authentic-a...own-jersey , so he and Neal have been taking turns doling out advice.”In the locker room he’s a big voice,” Fleury said of Neal. ”He’s been to the finals, so it’s good to have someone else who can share that experience.”Although Neal is a rarity in that he’s been to consecutive Stanley Cup Finals with two different teams, his most emphatic message is: Don’t take this ride for granted.”You see how badly he wants to win,” left wing David Perron said. ”To go through that last year and not come out on top, he’s got a huge chip on his shoulder and really wants to get it this time. He’s talking to guys, telling them you never know if you’re going to get another opportunity, so you’ve got to find a way to bring your best.”Toward that end, the 30-year-old Neal has helped carry the team with his stick. He has five goals and five assists in 17 games during the playoffs, including Vegas’ first goal in Game 2 on Wednesday.Asked whether Neal is more valuable as a player or a leader, Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant replied, ”On the ice is the major thing for me. When he scores goals like he did the last game, he makes our job a lot easier as coaches. James has been outstanding for us. He definitely helps our room with the young players, for sure.”Most notably, Tuch.”He’s been a mentor to me. He brought me aside today and told me what I could have done better on that shot but also that I have to move on Jake Muzzin Jersey ,” Tuch said. ”Everyone knows how good a hockey player he is. I don’t know if people knew he was that much of a leader. Maybe it was a different vibe in Nashville. But this year he’s been a huge leader for us, one of our (six alternate) captains, and it’s been great.”—More Stanley Cup coverage: https://apnews.com/tag/StanleyCupFinals GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — The Vegas Golden Knights couldn’t put away the Arizona Coyotes in regulation time, but they dominated overtime and picked up an important divisional win.Max Pacioretty stuffed in a rebound at 3:36 of overtime, and the Golden Knights beat the Coyotes 3-2 Wednesday night.The goal was the second of the night for Pacioretty, who also scored in the second period. Tomas Nosek also scored, and Marc-Andre Fleury had 19 saves for Vegas.Vegas had five shots in the extra period; Arizona had none.“We know how many divisional games we have here coming up,” Pacioretty said. “They’re all important. To be able to stick with it, kill that penalty at the end, was huge.”Derek Stepan scored twice for Arizona, and Darcy Kuemper had 22 saves. Both teams have picked up points in three of their last five games.Stepan scored at 19:08 of the first period and with 6:49 left in the third period. His second goal tied the game at 2-all. On the power play, Alex Galchenyuk fed Stepan, who had plenty of open net.The Coyotes got another power play with 1:55 to play, but couldn’t convert before the end of regulation.“There’s some positives to take out of the power play scoring a big goal for us Jeff Carter Jersey ,” Stepan said. “We scored a big goal to give our team a chance to win the hockey game. … We go forward with that.”Vegas lost a chance for a two-goal lead early in the third period. Cody Eakin’s apparent goal was reviewed and overturned when teammate Alex Tuch was ruled offside.The first period saw some hard hitting by both teams and a brief tussle between Coyotes center Brad Richardson and Golden Knights center William Karlsson. Arizona’s Christian Fischer had a shot bounce off the post late in the period.Stepan scored his fifth goal of the season with 52 seconds left in the first, when he redirected Jakob Chychrun’s shot past Fleury for a 1-0 Coyotes lead.Chychrun, playing in just his second game of the season, recorded his first point.Nosek took a pass from Reilly Smith and beat Kuemper with a shot over his glove at 5:50 of the second period, tying the game.The Coyotes just missed regaining the lead at the 11:32 mark of the second when Clayton Keller broke away with a long pass from Oliver Ekman-Larsson and hit the post with his shot.Pacioretty started the play that led to his goal late in the second period. He passed to Tuch, who sent the puck to Eakin, who crossed it back to Pacioretty, who netted a wrist shot.“‘Patch’ is one of those guys when he gets the puck in the net, he gets confident,” Vegas head coach Gerard Gallant said. “It couldn’t happen to a better player.”The Coyotes’ NHL-best penalty kill was 2 for 2 on Friday, and has allowed just five goals on 62 opponent power plays this season. Defenseman Alex Goligoski also returned from injury, playing for the first time since Nov. 8.“We need some individuals to play better,” Coyotes head coach Rick Tocchet said. “It’s too hard of a game for us. We don’t have the team to outscore teams all the time. We have to play a good, diligent game defensively.”NOTES: The game was the first of four meetings between the desert rivals. … Golden Knights F Tomas Hyka returned to action after being scratched from Monday’s game. … Kuemper started his eighth straight game with No. 1 goaltender Antti Raanta still out with a lower body injury. … F Josh Archibald served the second of a two-game suspension for an illegal check to the head from last week. … D Dakota Mermis was sent back to AHL Tucson after playing in one game for the Coyotes last weekend.UP NEXTVegas: Hosts the Calgary Flames on Friday night.Arizona: Hosts the Colorado Avalanche on Friday night.
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