In a strange scheduling decision, the NHL decided that the Vegas Golden Knights (51-24-7, 1st Pacific) would start their second round series two days before the San Jose Sharks (45-27-10, 3rd Pacific) start theirs. As a result, tonight marks Vegas' second game against the Sharks, but only San Jose's first against the Knights. One can spend time wondering why or how such a thing is even possible, but the Sharks would be well served to look forward, and never ever backward at what may or may not have happened on Thursday night.
Tonight's Sharks line up will have a new old look, as they'll be fighting an uphill battle without top line forward Evander Kane. Kane is serving a one game suspension for a brutal crosscheck to the face of Pierre-Edouard Bellemare in the Sharks' game zero (Knights' game one) on Thursday (how Kane could have committed such an egregious offense in a game he did not attend has been a subject of debate). That game saw the Knights somehow only score seven goals into an empty net with no opponent, but there is something to be said for the rust of eight days' rest.
Rust will be no excuse for San Jose, however, who will need to bounce back in a big way tonight to avoid heading home in a 0-2 hole against the upstart Knights. To do so, the Sharks will have to solve Marc-Andre Fleury. Fleury stopped all 33 shots he did not face Thursday night, improving his already cartoonishly inflated playoff save percentage to .982 through five games. San Jose needs to win four of the next six games to advance, and according to a series of advanced metrics and simulations run by our crack team of analysts, they'll need to score more than zero goals to do it.
Timo Meier -- Joe Pavelski -- Joonas Donskoi
Tomas Hertl -- Logan Couture -- Mikkel Boedker
Marcus Sorensen -- Chris Tierney -- Kevin Labanc
Melker Karlsson -- Eric Fehr -- Barclay Goodrow
Paul Martin -- Brent Burns
Marc-Edouard Vlasic -- Justin Braun
Brenden Dillon -- Dylan DeMelo
Scratched: Joakim Ryan, Joel Ward, Dylan Gambrell, , Antoine Bibeau, Jannik Hansen
Injured: Joe Thornton (knee)
Suspended: Evander Kane
Meier is probable to draw into first line duties, but there was no morning skate today, though, so the lines are an estimate, and expect more news as we get closer to puck drop.
Golden Knights Lines
Alex Tuch -- Cody Eakin -- Ryan Carpenter
William Carrier -- Pierre-Edouard Bellemare -- Tomas Nosek
Shea Theodore -- Deryk Engelland
Jon Merrill -- Colin Miller
Bellemare is a game time decision, according to head coach Gerard Gallant, but he is likely to play.
Where to watch
Broadcast: NBC, CBC, SN, TVAS
Stream: NHL.tv / NHL App
Radio: 98.5 KFOX / NHL App / Sharks App