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DeBoer: Golden Knights have 'everyone figured out'

Sam Hodde / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Peter DeBoer insists he isn't underestimating the Vegas Golden Knights despite the fact that the Dallas Stars' opponents came into the playoffs as a wild-card team.

"They're the Stanley Cup champions, they've got everyone figured out," the Stars head coach said postgame. "They figured out everyone last year, too, right? So we're not alone in that boat."

Vegas defeated Dallas 3-1 on Wednesday night to take a 2-0 lead in their first-round series. The Golden Knights won both games on the road and head home with a chance to sweep the Stars, the Western Conference's top seed.

DeBoer admits the Stars are in a state of disbelief after the first two games given how the two teams fared in the regular season.

"Yeah, for sure, I mean (we're) disappointed. I thought (in) Game 1, we probably deserved better, but you have to find a way to win that game. Tonight, the margin is like that," he added while pinching his thumb and index finger together.

The Dallas bench boss - who coached Vegas for parts of three seasons from 2019-20 to 2021-22 - gave further credit to the Golden Knights by suggesting they improved upon the championship-winning squad they boasted in 2022-23.

"They're a very good hockey club for a reason," he said. "I think they've got a deeper roster than they had last year if you look at their entire lineup including their scratches."

Vegas added Noah Hanifin, Tomas Hertl, and Anthony Mantha before the trade deadline and got captain Mark Stone back for Game 1 of this series after he missed the final two months of the regular season with a lacerated spleen.

The Golden Knights have now beaten the Stars in six straight games, including all three regular-season meetings in 2023-24 and a 6-0 shellacking in the decisive Game 6 of last spring's Western Conference Final.

Game 3 of their first-round matchup is scheduled for Saturday night in Vegas.

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