The Vegas Golden Knights will miss Max Pacioretty for an indefinite amount of time. The forward has been declared week-to-week with a lower-body injury. The injury came at some point during a recent game against the Edmonton Oilers.
Injury update: Max Pacioretty is out week-to-week with a lower body injury #VegasBorn
— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) March 11, 2020
Max Pacioretty Out With Injury
Pacioretty has been one of Vegas’ best players this season. The 31-year-old has 32 goals and 66 points in 71 games this season. Pacioretty has set a new career-high in shots with 307. He is also nearing his career-best goals total of 39, which came in 2013-14 with the Montreal Canadiens. Pacioretty is a valuable two-way player as well with 90 hits credited.
Pacioretty has reinvigorated his career with Vegas. He was seen as a player in decline when he scored just 17 goals and 37 points in 64 games with Montreal in 2017-18. He was so unwelcome in Montreal that the Canadiens traded him to Vegas in exchange for Tomas Tatar and Nick Suzuki. That trade has worked for the Golden Knights considering he has over 100 points in 137 games since the trade. Pacioretty’s contract runs through 2022-23 so there is plenty of time for him to produce for his current teammates.
What This Means for the Future
Vegas has a three-point lead over Edmonton in the Pacific Division. They have more talent than the Oilers but need some of their other stars to produce more. Jonathan Marchessault and Reilly Smith have the most goals after Pacioretty so expect more shots from them until he returns.
Vegas will likely promote from their AHL squad for an extra skater. Look for Valentin Zykov to return to the NHL after spending recent time with the AHL affiliate in Chicago. Zykov has just one goal and four points in 15 games for Vegas but 10 goals and 15 points in 29 games at the lower level. The Golden Knights have the firepower to win the division without Pacioretty but they will need him to make a serious run at the Stanley Cup.