PITTSBURGH — As the Golden Knights prepared to board a plane Friday bound for Pennsylvania, assistant coach Ryan McGill approached defenseman Jake Bischoff with an unexpected message.
Bischoff made his NHL debut Saturday against the Pittsburgh Penguins, skating with veteran Deryk Engelland on the third pairing.
He logged 16:06 of ice time with a plus-1 rating and two shots on goal in the Knights’ 3-0 victory at PPG Paints Arena.
“I felt terrible out there in warmups, and then during the game, all the guys made it really easy on me, encouraging me on the bench and on the ice, talking to me a lot,” Bischoff said. “I was a little nervous going into the game, but I kind of settled down out there.”
Bischoff, 25, made the Knights’ opening-night roster last season but did not play in any of the first nine games before returning to the American Hockey League. He was recalled again in February and was a healthy scratch each time.
Bischoff recorded 13 points (two goals, 11 assists) in 60 AHL games, helping the Chicago Wolves reach the Calder Cup final.
“Being up last year helped me a lot,” Bischoff said. “I think just knowing what to expect and also knowing how to prepare, watching these guys, how they prepare every day and get ready to go, I think that taught me a lot.”
Bischoff, acquired from the New York Islanders in an expansion draft trade, replaced rookie Nic Hague in the lineup. Hague played the past seven games and logged two assists and 14 penalty minutes.
“He played a real solid game, and that’s what we expect from Jake,” Knights coach Gerard Gallant said. “Good for him. He played well.”
Prospects selected for Russia series
Center Peyton Krebs was one of four Knights prospects selected for the 2019 CIBC Canada Russia Series that takes place Nov. 4 through 14.
Krebs, recovering from offseason surgery to repair a partially torn Achilles tendon, was named to Team WHL for the event against the Russian National Junior Team. It’s unclear whether the Knights’ first-round pick in June will be cleared to play.
Defenseman Kaedan Korczak also was chosen for Team WHL.
Defenseman Xavier Bouchard was selected to Team QMJHL for the second straight year, while Jordan Kooy is one of four goaltenders for Team OHL.
The Knights announced that all fans attending Friday’s 3 p.m. game against Colorado at T-Mobile Arena will receive a City of Las Vegas and City of Henderson patch in honor of Nevada Day. The team will wear special white jerseys during warmups to be raffled off with proceeds benefiting the Vegas Golden Knights Foundation. Also, the proceeds from the 51/49 Raffle will benefit local youth sports.
The game against Anaheim at 5 p.m. Oct. 27 is the first Kids Day, and fans will receive Upper Deck player cards upon entry. Kids can get free ice cream sundaes in Section 14 until the opening faceoff and have access to the Kid Zone in Section 4.