Mark Stone made his Las Vegas debut a day after being traded from Ottawa and had an immediate impact on the team and the fans at T-Mobile.
The one delivered Monday from the Golden Knights was as clear as it was needed for a team trying to find itself in late February: The taste of reaching a Stanley Cup Final last season was far too delicious not to attempt a second straight helping.
The NHL trade deadline will arrive Monday, and we will see what, if anything, Knights general manager George McPhee has done to a roster that sits third in the Pacific Division.
Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant tinkered with his lineup in key spots and smartly chose to sit a familiar face in another, the moves leading to a 5-1 victory over Nashville at T-Mobile Arena.
The Knights have now dropped a franchise-record five straight at home, the latest a 6-3 final to the Maple Leafs, a score defined by a Toronto side that in no way is stressed by anything the Knights offer.
Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant used the word “soft” after a 5-2 loss to Arizona on Tuesday, the team’s fourth straight at T-Mobile Arena and one that definitely bothered Gallant in terms of how his team competed.