The Golden Knights losing was the best possible thing for Las Vegas fans
This is the suffering Las Vegas needed.
The Golden Knights suffered a stunning collapse in Game 7 of their playoff series against the Sharks,, conceding four goals in five minutes during a major penalty en route to a 5-4 loss to San Jose in overtime. It was bizarre, amazing, heartbreaking and infuriating, all based on your perspective.
It’s also the best possible thing to happen to the Golden Knights.
DAILY SPORTS ARGUMENT
San Jose won Game 7 by staging a memorable comeback after Golden Knights center Cody Eakin as assessed a five-minute major penalty for "this" infraction. What do you think of the call?
RT: Shouldn't have been a five-minute major.
Like: Refs got it right! pic.twitter.com/gOY6qRnqRU
That might make you mad if you’re a Golden Knights fan, and I get it. This isn’t me excusing the horrific call that led to the Sharks being on the power play for five minutes, resulting in those conceded goals — far from it. That was an ass call that stole your season. What I’m saying is that it’s excellent that you had it all taken from you.
Up to this point the Golden Knights have been relatively insulated from the agony of sports. The team made the Stanley Cup Finals in their first year, returning to the playoffs in 2019 . Through incredible management and unprecedented front office skill the Golden Knights had a level of success no expansion team had before. It was an astounding curiosity, but also deprived fans of something every team needs — disappointment.
hook it to my veins pic.twitter.com/u5BRlzY6Nu— chris moltisanti wearing a neck brace (@itwasthreezero) April 24, 2019
A fanbase’s identity is forged through anguish. Years and years of pent up frustration and exasperation punctuated by moments of near-success, only to have them stolen away by external forces. Every fan remembers the moments where their team won, but more indelibly burnt in a fan’s collective consciousness are the times when a ref, an official, the league or circumstance stole it all away. This is sports, and they just happened to the Golden Knights.
The success of the Warriors and Patriots. The emergence of the Browns. All predicated on years of falling short or collapsing. Those fans have moments they hate and loathe, and it’s made the success worth it. The Warriors spent much of the 2000s in NBA purgatory with bad contracts and aging stars trying to keep a leaky ship afloat. The Patriots won just three division titles in 41 years before winning a Super Bowl. The Browns have been a laughing stock for two decades until Baker Mayfield and Co. made them relevant. It’s an ebb and flow, and the Golden Knights are now a part of it.
This isn’t designed to tell Vegas fans they shouldn’t be mad. Y’all should be absolutely furious, and by all accounts on Twitter you are. This is great! I know it was probably upsetting to lose in the Stanley Cup Finals in 2018, and to be eliminated now — but use that anger as fuel. Channel the bullshit. Come back in 2019-20 ready to scream at the refs, hate everything the Sharks stand for. This is a golden opportunity to not just be “the surprising team who wins so early,” but a team — standing like any other in the NHL.
Suffering isn’t a “welcome to the NHL moment,” it’s a “welcome to the world of sports” moment — and the Golden Knights finally arrived.