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Golden Knights Victorious in Emotional, Electric Home Opener

by Cole Greenberg, Entertainment Editor

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It has been a long time coming for professional sports in Las Vegas, but that wait has finally come to an end.  

On Tuesday, Oct. 10, the Vegas Golden Knights went up against the Phoenix Coyotes for their first ever home game at T-Mobile Arena. This wasn’t any ordinary home opener, though, as the expansion team was officially welcomed into Las Vegas just days after its mass shooting.

“It’s bigger than hockey,” said head coach Gerard Gallant prior to the game. “It’s a lot bigger than out game.”

The solemn night began with a tribute to the victims and heroes of the the attack, as paramedics, nurses, doctors, and police officers were all brought out alongside the players for the national anthem, performed by the Route 91 Harvest Festival team. Preceding it, there were 58 seconds of silence held for each one of the lives taken that night.

By the time of puck drop, the unitedly buzzing crowd of nearly 20,000 was ready to go. With fans’ enthusiasm carrying them, it wasn’t long before the Knights showed who the night belonged to. Left wing Tomas Nosek, who had only played 17 NHL games prior to this season, scored their first goal a mere two and a half minutes into the game.

They would not stop there, though, as the Knights tallied up a whopping three goals within the following six and a half minutes of play.

Quick offense and smart defense, assisted by goalie Marc-Andre Fleury’s 31 saves, would propel the team 5-2 win and third in a row. With the victory, the Golden Knights became the first expansion team in the history of the NHL to win their first three games.

For a city in the midst of healing, something to come together around is just what it needed. The impact of having a sports team in Las Vegas, though always certain to bring business and money into the city, has been uncertain regarding community. That question mark has now seemed to have been erased.

“This city is pulling itself back up, and it’s getting back on its feet, and it’s excited about hockey right now,” stated defenseman Nate Schmidt. “And I think that’s where we can be an olive branch, a crutch, whatever we need to be, in order to help our city.”

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Golden Knights Victorious in Emotional, Electric Home Opener