Captain Mark Stone says the Vegas Golden Knights can be contenders in the Stanley Cup playoffs if they find a way to beat the Dallas Stars in the biggest game of their season on Tuesday.
The Golden Knights (42-31-6), 50/1 to win the Stanley Cup in 2021/22, collected a point in a 5-4 shoot-out defeat the San Jose Sharks on Sunday to move within three points of the Stars for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference.
Timo Meier scored the tying goal for the Sharks with 0.9 seconds left in the third period, a pill which 29-year-old Stone admitted was "tough to swallow."
Stone recently returned to action following over two months on injury reserve due to a back injury.
In 28 games this season, Stone has 28 points (eight goals, 20 assists). He is yet to register on the scoreboard in the six games since returning from injury on 12th April.
Influential Stone is just one in several key players to return for the Golden Knights in recent weeks with forward Max Pacioretty, goalie Robin Lehner and defenceman Alec Martinez all returning following extended spells out of the line-up.
Stone said to the media following the defeat to the Sharks: "We have to win the next game [Tuesday at the Stars]. If we win the next game, you never know what could happen.
"You can get some help. We've gotten some along the way. Really a devastating loss, but we're still in it.
"You have to think that way. We have to win a big game on Tuesday to keep our chances alive."