LAS VEGAS (AP) — The Vegas Golden Knights chose to celebrate a monumental moment for the franchise by thinking back to how its inaugural season began — hoping the new hockey team could bring smiles to a city reeling from tragedy.
Shortly after Vegas became the first expansion team to clinch a playoff berth with a 4-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche on Monday night, the mantra in the locker room was the same as the one adopted shortly before the team’s home opener:
Team owner Bill Foley, veteran goalie Marc-Andre Fleury and leading scorer William Karlsson were among those who thought back Monday to the Oct. 1 mass shooting that killed 58 and injured hundreds more on the Las Vegas Strip.
“It was a disaster that night, it was a terrible massacre, we changed our initial opening night ceremonies, I thought we really connected with the town — I’m so proud of the whole team,” Foley said. “From then on, it was pretty unbelievable. We got off to that fast start. We’ve…