Larry Martino

Larry Martino

Larry Martino

If you are a big fan of the Vegas Golden Knights like I am, then you know the usual suspects who are expected to lead the team in scoring. But, who are the unsung heroes on the team who could end up being the difference makers who surprise everyone during the 2022-2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs?

Every playoff season, there seems to be a third or fourth line player who raises his game to a new level during the quest for the Stanley Cup. His name will be up there amongst the superstars of the game who everyone expects to shine during the “second season.” On the Vegas Golden Knights, we expect Captain Mark Stone, Jack Eichel, Jonathan Marchessault, Reilly Smith, Chandler Stephenson and William Karlsson to be up there amongst the team leaders in scoring. On defense, we expect Shea Theodore and Alex Pietrangelo to be the top scorers. Which player on the roster might surprise us and sneak into the top five in scoring?

Well, it is usually someone who gets some ice time during the power plays. During the playoffs, every team amps up their defensive play. The referees tend to call only the most obvious infractions and let more hooking, holding and interference go without calling a penalty. They expect the players to “skate through” the extra tough defensive tactics. Plus, during a seven game series, each team learns their opponent’s tendencies and is better able to defend against them. All of this attention to defense tends to make playoff games lower scoring than in the regular season.

So, special teams become even more important during the Stanley Cup Playoffs. If one of the five players below gets some extra ice time during power plays, or is able to break through the other team’s defensive tactics, he may outpace some of the Golden Knights’ star players to shine during the playoffs. Take a look below and see if you agree.

  • Nicholas Roy #10

    You may not actually be surprised by this pick because Roy has been earning more and more ice time for the Golden Knights with his great defensive play. Plus, he is willing to go to the net where the tough goals are scored. He is even getting power play time now.

  • Pavel Dorofeyev #16


    This 22-year-old rookie from Russia turned a lot of heads during the final weeks of the regular season when he was called up from the Henderson Silver Knights to replace injured regulars. He ended up scoring 7 goals in only 18 games. He got some power play time and potted two tallies for the Vegas Golden Knights.

  • Paul Cotter #43

    This fiery 23-year-old rookie played 55 games for the Vegas Golden Knights during the 2022-23 regular season, scoring 13 goals with 5 assists for a total of 18 points. If he gets inserted into the starting lineup during the playoffs, his style of rugged play can turn the tide in a game. However, he was a minus-five, so Coach Cassidy may not have enough faith in his defensive abilities to trust him as a starter during the playoffs.

  • Michael Amadio #22

    Michael Amadio got better and better as the season progressed. He ended up playing 67 games for the Golden Knights, scoring 16 goals with 11 assists for a total of 27 points. He has a nose for the net, great hands, and some slick moves as you just saw in the video highlights. If he gets lots of minutes on one of the top two lines, he could be a surprise high scorer for Vegas.

  • William Carrier #28

    An original member of the Vegas Golden Knights, William Carrier is a fan favorite for good reason. He plays hard, checks hard, goes to the net hard, and energizes the team. Unfortunately, injuries cut his regular season short after scoring a career-high 16 goals in 56 games. His most impressive statistic is the fact that 7 of those 16 tallies were game winning goals! He is “Mr. Clutch” for Vegas, and we are all hoping he heals up and is ready to play real soon.

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