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Marchessault on the second A.N.: Alexandre Daigle sharply criticizes Bruce Cassidy
Credit: Capture d'écran / Screenshot
Last night, the Vegas Golden Knights were facing elimination, while the Dallas Stars could advance to the next round with a win in Game 6.

Fortunately for the Knights, Noah Hanifin saved the day with the winning goal (and only goal of the game, aside from an empty netter) in the third period.

The Golden Knights remain alive, having forced a seventh and final game in the series.

Vegas can thank goaltender Adin Hill, who was perfect throughout.

He had virtually no help from his attack, but still found a way to make the difference.

Speaking of the Vegas attack, which was virtually invisible last night, well, in preparation for Game 6, Knights head coach Bruce Cassidy had made a few changes to his trios and power-play waves.

One of these changes was a very daring one, which could have really cost the Golden Knights the series when you consider that they only scored one goal (apart from the empty net) in the game.

For Game 6, Cassidy decided to demote Jonathan Marchessault to the second power-play unit.

Wasn’t he? Well, what do you know?

It’s a rather bizarre and inexplicable decision that was roundly criticized last night by Alexandre Daigle.

In fact, the former first overall pick in the 1993 NHL Entry Draft was quick to condemn Cassidy’s decision during his appearance on TVA Sports’ JiC last night.

For Daigle, the decision makes no sense and could hurt both the Golden Knights and Cassidy.

“It makes no sense to me: Cassidy, it’s going to cost him his job […]. […] It disgusts me.” – Alexandre Daigle

Daigle’s frustration and lack of understanding are totally understandable.

Why is Cassidy taking his leading scorer (42 goals this season), who won the Conn Smythe Trophy (awarded to the playoff MVP) last season, off his first power play wave?

Marchessault enjoyed the best season of his career, and was probably once again the Golden Knights’ MVP.

Daigle made an excellent point when he explained that all the following players have scored fewer goals than Marchessault this season, but all play on the first power play wave.

We’re talking about Mikko Rantanen, Sidney Crosby, Leon Draisaitl, Brock Boeser, William Nylander, Steven Stamkos, Chris Kreider, Brady Tkachuk, Matthew Tkachuk, J.T. Miller, Sebastian Aho and Elias Pettersson.

In short, it really doesn’t make sense to demote Marchessault, especially at this time of year, when he’s the first Quebec player to win the Conn Smythe since Jean-Sébastien Giguère in 2003 with the Anaheim Ducks.

While it’s far from certain that Marchessault will be back in Vegas next year, given all the players in the organization and the limited salary cap, the Quebecer is still a member of the Golden Knights, and they should take advantage of that.

In a gust

– Cole Eiserman is just one goal away from Cole Caufield’s record.

– A nice surprise, this Artur Silovs.

– The Sens’ pest will be at the World Championship.

– Read more.

– Ouch.

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