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Brewin Flames

VGK 2018/19 Season Chatter

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Game # 1


VGK 2 Flyers 5


Simmonds nets two for Flyers in 5-2 win over Vegas

LAS VEGAS -- The Philadelphia Flyers know the importance of opening the season with a road victory.

Wayne Simmonds scored two goals to lead Philadelphia to a 5-2 season-opening road win over the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday night.

It was the Flyers' third straight season-opening victory in a Pacific Division city. Philadelphia has earned at least a point in each of its last four season openers (3-0-1).

Oskar Lindblom, Robert Hagg and Scott Laughton also scored for the Flyers, one of seven NHL teams to win on the road during Thursday's 10-game slate.

"I think it's tough sometimes when you open at your own rink," Elliott said. "You have all the spectacles and the show, sometimes it takes away from your focus a little bit and the road team just has to come in and play (its) game."

And while the defending Western Conference champion Golden Knights' scoring chances outweighed Philadelphia's, 24-14, Flyers netminder Brian Elliott was outstanding in stopping 23 of the 25 shots he faced in front of an announced crowd of 18,555.

Vegas' Marc-Andre Fleury allowed five goals and stopped 11 of 16 shots before being replaced by Malcolm Subban with 9:49 left in the second period. Subban stopped all nine of the shots he saw.

Vegas coach Gerard Gallant dispatched the notion about his team being distracted by the pre-game festivities, which included the raising of the Pacific Division and Western Conference championship banners.

"I was excited and our players were excited to start at home tonight, it just didn't go our way," Gallant said. "I thought we played a real good 10 minutes to open the game up. We had a 1-0 lead and then (Shea) Theodore hit the crossbar, would have made it 2-0. After that they pretty well took over the game."

Jonathan Marchessault and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare were the only ones to score for Vegas, as the Flyers dominated the neutral zone.

"We kind of just wanted to counter-attack their speed, that's the way they play," said Simmonds, who led the Flyers with four shots and seven hits. "They have their D jumping the rush a lot of times, and we figured if we could bust the zone we could keep their D back. It worked to our advantage and we kept pucks in and we went in and we got them."

Marchessault's shot from the left dot gave the Golden Knights a 1-0 lead early in the first period, but Lindblom tied the game after making a nice move around Fleury's left pad and a backhand into an empty net.

Simmonds pounced on a loose puck sitting on the goal line, and poked it into the net to give the Flyers a 2-1 lead late in the first period. His second goal made it 3-1 early in the second period when he slipped a shot under a sprawled out Fleury.

Simmonds has five goals in his last two season-openers.

Later in the second period, it was Mikhail Vorobyev, in his NHL debut, starting a rush with a stretch pass to James van Riemsdyk, who then fed Hagg, who beat Fleury with a wrist shot to the glove side. Just 1:06 later, Laughton deflected Radko Gudas' shot from the point to make it 5-1.

Bellemare netted a short-handed goal to cut Philadelphia's lead to 5-2 with 11:32 left in the game.

This marked the first of two games in nine days between these clubs. Vegas will visit the Flyers on October 13 to wrap up a five-game road trip that begins Saturday night.

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Game # 2



Haula scores in shootout, Golden Knights top Wild 2-1

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Fresh off last season's loss in the Stanley Cup final, the Vegas Golden Knights reloaded for another run by remaking their second line.

A newcomer and a holdover showed Saturday how explosive the second unit can be for Vegas.

Erik Haula scored in the shootout and the Golden Knights rallied to a 2-1 victory over the Minnesota Wild on Saturday night.

Max Pacioretty, who was acquired from Montreal in an offseason trade, scored his first goal for Vegas, which has used Pacioretty and Haula on opposite sides of new center Paul Stastny in the season's first two games.

"He's a great player and he played a real good game tonight," Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant said of Pacioretty. "That line was excellent and that's a big goal for us at a key time."

Pacioretty snapped home a one-timer in the slot from Jonathan Marchessault with 1:31 left in regulation to tie the game as Gallant pulled goaltender Marc Andre-Fleury.

"I really thought in the third period when we played our best, that we were blocking shots and doing what we had to do," Minnesota coach Bruce Boudreau said. "But they were pressing. They come at you all the time, that's why they won the West."

Fleury made 29 saves for Vegas, bouncing back after being pulled in the opening 5-2 loss at home to the Philadelphia Flyers. Fleury was pulled after 30:11 against Philadelphia after allowing five goals on 16 shots.

Matt Dumba scored for the Wild, who was the only team in the Western Conference to sweep Vegas last season. Minnesota goaltender Devan Dubnyk stopped 41 of the 42 shots he faced.

"He was fantastic," Wild forward Jason Zucker said of Dubnyk. "He's the only reason that we didn't lose that game 10-nothing."

Haula scored the only goal in the shootout against his former team as his shot between Dubnyk's legs ended up trickling in after Dubnyk appeared to make the stop.

"We just stuck with it, made a great play there on Max's goal and we had a lot of chances," Haula said. "Duby played well over there and made it hard on us, but overall I'm just happy with our game. It's a good indicator to jump back in a tough building, tough environment and just play like that, it's a good job by the guys."

Dumba, signed to five-year, $30 million contract in the offseason, scored on a slap shot from the blue line midway through the first period. Dubnyk held up against a Vegas' attack that outshot Minnesota 42-30 through overtime.

"It's nice to feel good out of the gate," Dubnyk said. "It'd be nice to have two wins, obviously. It's tough to feel too good about it. But we just try to work on those things that make you feel good and I'm feeling pretty good in there now, so we'll have a good week."

The Wild lost for the first time in the first home game of the season at the Xcel Energy Center after starting 14-0-3 in such games.

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Game # 3



Eichel scores 2 in Sabres' 4-2 win over Golden Knights

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Jack Eichel scored two goals to lead the Buffalo Sabres to their second straight win, 4-2 over the Vegas Golden Knights on Monday.

Marco Scandella and Jason Pominville had the other goals and Carter Hutton made 35 saves for the Sabres (2-1-0), who have a winning record for the first time since the third game of the lockout-shortened 2012-13 season.

Erik Haula and Jonathan Marchessault scored for the Golden Knights (1-2-0), playing the second of a five-game road trip. Haula had the winning shootout goal in Vegas' victory at Minnesota on Saturday. Marc-Andre Fleury made 13 saves.

Buffalo had only five shots on goal in the second period, but was able to score three times in about five minutes.

Eichel tucked a backhand around Fleury's poke check for his third of the season to give the Sabres a 2-0 lead five minutes into the period. Sam Reinhart slipped a pass between the skates of Vegas defenseman Deryk Engelland to set up Eichel in front of the net.

The Golden Knights got on the board less than three minutes later when Haula sent a wrist shot from outside the right circle past Hutton.

The Sabres responded with two goals in a 1:28 span. Scandella floated a long shot from the blue line over Fleury's glove just 27 seconds after Vegas scored. Evan Rodrigues fed Pominville for a one-timer to make it 4-1 midway through the second.

Buffalo never relinquished the lead after Rasmus Ristolainen slid the puck to Eichel for a one-timer from the left circle on a power play with 5:29 left in the first period.

Marchessault scored his second of the season for Vegas on an unassisted wrist shot from the high slot with 9:13 left in the third period.

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Game # 4

Golden Knights Fall Flat In Stanley Cup Rematch

by Gordon Weigers 

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 / VegasGoldenKnights.com
 October 10th, 2018
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In the third game of their five-game road trip, the Vegas Golden Knights were unable to drum up a third period comeback and lost to the Washington Capitals, 5-2.


As a Washington-controlled first period wound down to its final minute, the Capitals found a power-play goal off the stick of Evgeny Kuznetsov. The first half of the second period passed without a goal, but Alex Ovechkin connected on a one-timer to put Washington up by a pair. But less than a minute later, 

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 scored his first goal of the season in his return to the lineup to bring the Golden Knights to within a goal.


In the third, the teams traded goals in the first 10 minutes as Nicklas Backstrom scored for Washington and 

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 netted a tally for Vegas to make it a 3-2 hockey game.


But the Caps weren't done as Kuznetsov set up Ovechkin for the second time of the night and Washington reclaimed the two-goal lead.


With 6:11 to play in the third, a dogged forecheck from 

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 led to a Max Pacioretty goal, but the play entering the zone was ruled offside and the goal was waved off. T.J. Oshie's empty-net goal was the final entry on the scoresheet as Washington won the game, 5-2.



After Smith's goal brought the score to 3-2, the Golden Knights took the momentum in the hockey game. But at 10:33, Kuznetsov held off a defender, waited for Ovechkin to get open and slid the puck perfectly through a seam to the Washington captain. Ovechkin made no mistake burying his second of the night and Washington was able to hang on for the 5-2 win.




Evgeny Kuznetsov: With a goal and three assists in the game, Kuznetsov led all players in scoring.

Nicklas Backstrom: Backstrom posted a goal and an assist, both of which came on the power play.

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: In his first game of the season, Eakin stepped around the Capitals defense, got Holtby out of position, and scored his first goal of the year on a wraparound in the second period.



Power Play: The Golden Knights power play has yet to score a goal. Perhaps some changes in personnel on the man advantage are coming.

Solid Second Period: Vegas had twice as many chances to score in the middle period as they outshot the Capitals, 16-8.


Consistent Urgency: Vegas had stretches of high-pressure, effective offensive zone time and glorious scoring chances, but they were canceled out on a number of second-chance opportunities and weren't able to maintain the pressure.


Lots Of Shots, But...: Vegas has been consistently outshooting opponents early in the season, but only have one win to show for it.

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Game # 5

Kessel's hat trick powers Penguins past Vegas 4-2




Updated: 6 hours ago


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 corralled the puck near his own goal-line and saw 

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 sprinting out of the zone.

He flipped a perfect pass to center ice, sending Kessel on a breakaway that resulted in a goal.

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 repeated a similar sequence with Kessel later in the second period that ended the same way.

The two goals completed a natural hat trick for Kessel and the 

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 beat the 

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 4-2 on Thursday night.


"There's a fine line between anticipation and cheating and I think Phil has a knack for seeing those windows of opportunity," Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said. "He has explosive speed so he can create separation when he needs to. He has another gear and you could see that on those breakaways."


Vegas scored the first goal of the game, and Kessel had the next three. It was Kessel's sixth career hat trick and first in four seasons with Pittsburgh. His last hat trick came Feb. 1, 2014, as a member of the 

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, in a 6-3 win against Ottawa.


"It's been awhile," said Kessel, who switched sticks before his hat trick. "It felt good. I had some good passes and I was able to finish."


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 scored his third goal and Malkin had three assists for the Penguins, who allowed 11 goals in their first two games.


"I could see our guys making more of a concerted effort to defend," Sullivan said. "I think our team is capable of getting to another level. I don't think we had our swagger like we're capable of, but from an effort standpoint, you can see they were trying to do the right things."


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 stopped 35 shots in his first regular-season start for Pittsburgh. Starter 

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 missed Thursday's game and is day-to-day with a concussion suffered Monday during practice. Murray participated in, and faced shots during, Thursday's optional morning skate.


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 scored his second of the season for Vegas and 100th career goal. 

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 also scored for Vegas, which lost its third straight and has opened the season with four losses in five games. The defending Western Conference champions lost their fourth game on Nov. 2 last season.


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 made 18 saves for Vegas. 

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, who spent 13 seasons and won three Stanley Cups with Pittsburgh, served as the backup after allowing four goals on 28 shots during a loss Wednesday at Washington. Fans chanted for Fleury -- selected in 2017 by Vegas in the expansion draft -- after Subban allowed three goals on seven shots in the second period.


"We just have to stay positive," Subban said. "We've been generating a lot of shots on net. Eventually, we're going to start getting some bounces."


Nosek opened the scoring, taking a pass from 

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 along the boards and slipping a backhander behind DeSmith.


But Kessel answered for Pittsburgh when he beat Subban with a wrist shot following a Malkin faceoff win.

Kessel's breakaway goal midway through the second put Pittsburgh in front for good. Malkin hit Kessel at center with a stretch pass from his own goal-line and he finished the breakaway with a glove-side wrist shot.


To complete the hat trick, Hagelin hit Kessel with a long outlet pass and he beat Subban low to the glove side.

"I was just kind of going down and shooting," Kessel said. "Nothing special. The pucks found me and I had two good plays."


Guentzel's blocker-side wrist shot 57 seconds later on a backhand feed from 

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 gave Pittsburgh a comfortable three-goal lead through two periods.


Kessel did all the damage before Pittsburgh's last goal.


"We needed the win," Kessel said. "I think we can get better. We just have to improve each game."


Game notes

Vegas is 0-for-13 on the power play in five games

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Game # 6


Vegas 1 Flyers 0

PHILADELPHIA -- Cody Eakin scored with 1:25 left in the game and Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 26 shots to lead the Vegas Golden Knights to a 1-0 win over the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday.

Eakin ended the scoreless tie with a sensational sequence for the winner. He made a dive for the puck to keep it away from Flyers center Sean Couturier in Philly's end of the ice. Ryan Carpenter snared the puck and passed it back to Eakin, who fired it from the circle past Brian Elliott for the winner.

Elliott was pulled to give the Flyers the man-advantage and they still couldn't solve Fleury.

Fleury earned his first shutout and second win of the season for the Western Conference champions. The Golden Knights had been in a bit of a sophomore slump with a 1-4 start that included an opening-night home loss to the Flyers. But on the final game of a five-game road trip, Fleury carried Vegas to a needed win before it returns home next week to open a five-game homestand.

Fleury made 10 saves in the second period and all of them were worthy of the highlight reel. He stuffed Scott Laughton on a short-handed breakaway that wiped out the center and sent him crashing into the boards. Laughton crashed back-first into the boards and was down on the ice for a few seconds, then went straight to the locker room. He didn't return until the third.

Moments after that save, Flyers captain Claude Giroux was alone on a breakaway, took a nifty skip over a Vegas blade and was also stopped by Fleury. Fleury lay on his right side and snared the puck with his glove a tick before it reached the crease. Giroux's stick hop was a play-of-the-day candidate -- had Fleury not topped him with the save of the month. The Golden Knights tweeted the clip with the caption, "Don't you Fleury bout a thing."

He won his 29th career game against the Flyers.

The Flyers were stomped 8-2 in their home opener Tuesday night against the San Jose Sharks and were booed off the ice to start a make-or-break year in coach Dave Hakstol's fourth season. They rebounded 24 hours later with a gritty win at Ottawa and played a solid 60 minutes Saturday against the Western Conference champions. It just wasn't enough for a team that can't avoid any more injuries.

Laughton was banged up and forward Oskar Lindblom also hit the locker room in the third after Golden Knights defenseman Brayden McNabb plowed him into the glass. The Flyers were already without two of their top nine forwards -- Nolan Patrick and James van Riemsdyk. Patrick could miss up to 10 days after he took a stick to the face against Ottawa. Van Riemsdyk, who signed a $35 million, five-year contract in the summer, is out another month because an injury suffered when was hit with a shot in the second game of the season.

The Golden Knights played their straight game without injured center Paul Stastny, who was signed to a $19.5 million, three-year contract in the offseason.

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Game # 7


Fleury ties for 10th on NHL wins list, Vegas tops Sabres 4-1

LAS VEGAS -- Jonathan Marchessault was 13 when goalie Marc-Andre Fleury got his first NHL win on Oct. 18, 2003.

Nearly 15 years later, Marchessault helped Fleury reach a major milestone with victory No. 407.

Marchessault scored twice and Fleury tied Glenn Hall for 10th place in NHL history as the Vegas Golden Knights beat the Buffalo Sabres 4-1 on Tuesday night.

"I feel really honored to be among these guys (in the top 10)," said Fleury, who made 26 saves for the defending Western Conference champions. "I just try to do my part, try to do my job stopping the puck. Tonight, I thought it was a great team effort, it wasn't just me. It was our best game by far this season."

Cody Eakin and William Karlsson also had goals for the Golden Knights, who scored more than two for the first time in seven games this season.

Vladimir Sobotka scored with 37 seconds left, spoiling Fleury's bid for his 50th career shutout.

For the second consecutive game, the 15-year veteran came up with clutch stops. Sobotka skated in alone in the third period and fired a wrist shot from the left side, but Fleury's glove was too quick. Not long after that, during a penalty kill, Fleury's glove nabbed Kyle Okposo's attempt from the right side.

Vegas stymied all six Sabres power plays and improved to 17 of 21 on the penalty kill this season. Buffalo, meanwhile, is 4 for 24 on the power play.

Sabres goalie Carter Hutton stopped 25 shots.

After starting the season with a 5-2 home loss to Philadelphia, the Golden Knights stumbled during a 2-3-0 road trip, as they couldn't quite find the magic that helped them open last season 8-1-0.

Tuesday, they played their most complete game of the young season, looking like the high-energy expansion team that made it to the Stanley Cup Final in June.

The victory avenged a loss in Buffalo, where the Sabres outskated, outhustled and outplayed the Golden Knights in a 4-2 win on Oct. 8.

"We played a real good, solid hockey game. I thought we were the better team most of the night and worked hard," Vegas coach Gerard Gallant said. "I seen a lot of things we're going to have to do the rest of the year. Really happy with the performance. Too many penalties, but (the penalty kill) did a great job."

The Sabres have scored a power-play goal in each of their three wins, going 4 for 9 in those games, but are now 0 for 15 on man-advantage opportunities in their three losses.

"Special teams were the critical part of our game," coach Phil Housley said. "We focused on that before the game. We knew that they did not have a power-play goal up to this point and they probably were working on it. We missed an assignment on the (penalty kill) and our power play let us down."

Marchessault ended the Golden Knights' power-play drought with a minute left in the first period, taking a crisp pass from Karlsson and one-timing it over Hutton's glove.

Vegas, which was 4 for 29 on the power play through seven games last season, was 0 for 16 with the man advantage heading into the game. The Golden Knights finished the night 1 for 3.

Eakin scored his third of the season in the second period, when his short-handed goal gave Vegas a 2-0 lead two minutes in.

Karlsson, who led the team with 43 goals last season, scored his first of the campaign. It took Karlsson seven games to get his first goal last season, too.

Marchessault added an empty-net goal for the final margin.

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Game # 8

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Fleury earns 408th career win, Golden Knights top Ducks 3-1

LAS VEGAS -- Marc-Andre Fleury has never been one to take credit for his wins.

All 408 of them.

Fleury stopped 17 shots to lead the Vegas Golden Knights to their third straight victory, 3-1 over the Anaheim Ducks on Saturday night.

And with his 408th win, the 15-year veteran moved into sole possession of 10th place on the NHL's career list.

"Like I've said before, it's an honor to be among these guys," Fleury said. "I've been fortunate to play with a lot of great players, very good teams. It's pretty cool to be there."

Fleury, who for the second straight game lost a bid for his 50th career shutout in the third period, has allowed just two goals in his last three starts.

"We played a good team tonight and we dominated," said Fleury, now 15 wins behind ninth-place Tony Esposito. "We had the puck all night, we didn't give them much. Pretty quiet on my end."

William Karlsson, Ryan Reaves and Jonathan Marchessault scored for the Golden Knights, who outshot the Ducks 45-18.

After going 0 for 16 on the power play through their first six games, the Golden Knights have scored with the man advantage in each of the last two games. Vegas finished 1 for 5 on the power play against the Ducks, who were 0 for 2.

Vegas, which has answered a three-game losing streak with its current three-game win streak, has gone 11 for 11 on the penalty kill over its last four games.

"They do a good job, they work hard to get in shot lanes, they really put pressure on teams," Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant said. "I think they got off to a tough start at the first of the season. I think the guys take pride in that. When you do a real good job killing penalties, that usually sets the stage for your team and I think the guys have done a great job lately."

Ben Street had the goal for the Ducks, and John Gibson finished with 42 saves.

"We have to have more people engaged in the game; we didn't get engaged in the hockey game until maybe the third period, even then we lost too many 2-on-1 battles," Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle said. "We didn't compete hard enough. Our goalie gave us a chance again. We scored a goal early (in the third period), and then we have a little bit of life to us. We displayed very little life in the first two periods of the game."

As opposed to the Golden Knights, who outhustled Anaheim to loose pucks, were strong on the forecheck, and created many more scoring opportunities than the Ducks.

Per NaturalStatTrick.com, the Golden Knights had 34 scoring chances and 19 high-danger chances. Conversely, the Ducks had just 18 scoring chances and only five high-danger chances.

"I liked everything tonight," Gallant said. "I liked the way we played, I liked our power play, we had good chances, I liked our whole game. The last three minutes of the second period and early in the third period I thought we let down a little bit and gave them some real good chances and we turned some pucks over. But besides that, I thought we played one of our best games."

Karlsson, drafted by the Ducks in 2011, scored his second goal of the season when he redirected Marchessault's centering feed past Gibson for a power-play goal. Karlsson, third in the NHL with 43 goals last season, has two goals and six assists in the last six games.

Reaves scored his first of the season midway through the second to make it 2-0 with his son and mother watching from the stands.

"I've scored in front of (my son) a bunch, but every time my mum comes down I seem to score," said Reaves, whose goal was the game-winner. "And my mum just got here last night. She seems to be my good luck charm."

Street cut Vegas' lead in half early in the third period. Marchessault's empty-net goal with 17 seconds left provided the final margin.

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Game # 9

Vegas.gif 2 vansmall.png 3 SO

Granlund scores in shootout, Canucks beat Golden Knights 3-2

Marcus Granlund scores the only goal during the shootout as the Canucks beat the Golden Knights 3-2.

LAS VEGAS -- The Vancouver Canucks celebrated their annual Father's Trip with a victory in Las Vegas.

Markus Granlund scored in the shootout and the Canucks rejoiced on their special night on the Las Vegas Strip after defeating the Golden Knights 3-2 Wednesday night.

"It was a gutty performance by a lot of our guys tonight," Vancouver coach Travis Green said. "I like how our guys responded and gutted it out. The guys played hard tonight."

Canucks goalie Jacob Markstrom stopped all four shots he faced in the shootout, and made 33 saves.

Bo Horvat kept his hot streak going, scoring both of Vancouver's goals. He now has nine points (seven goals, two assists) in the last nine games. But it was his hustle on the defensive end with a little more than two minutes left in overtime that produced the play of the game.

Jonathan Marchessault, who leads the Golden Knights with 10 points, had a chance for a breakaway and was closing in on Markstrom, but was thwarted by Horvat, whose backcheck knocked the puck away.

"I'm just trying to win hockey games," Horvat said. "The whole team is. Part of my success is playing good at both ends of the rink. My defensive game is feeding my offense. If I keep doing that and keep simplifying my game and being that complete player, good things will happen."

Marchessault, Max Pacioretty, Erik Haula and William Karlsson all missed their opportunities in the shootout.

Pacioretty and Ryan Reaves scored for the Golden Knights. Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 24 of 26 shots.

The Canucks, who played their seventh road game in their last nine contests, are 2-0 in overtime games and now 1-0 in shootouts. The Golden Knights, who won a shootout in Minnesota in their second game of the season, are 1-1 in shootouts.

Green said it's been his team's resolve that has helped overcome the injury bug.

The Canucks were without rookie sensation Elias Pettersson, who leads all rookies with five goals, and missed his fifth straight game due to a concussion. All-Star Brock Boeser is dealing with a groin injury and missed his first game of the season, while Christopher Tanev, Sven Baertschi and Alexander Edler were lost during Wednesday's game.

"We've talked about being hard to play against right from Day One and not wavering, sticking with the game," Green said. "We know the type of game we need to play, especially now. We're down a lot of guys right now. I like how our team has just stuck with it. Each of them knows how they need to play to have success, and they're doing it."

The Golden Knights, meanwhile, extended their penalty kill streak to 13 over their last five games, but continued to struggle with their power play, going 0 for 4. They're a league worst 2 for 28 this season with a man advantage.

"They're getting some opportunities," Vegas coach Gerard Gallant said. "The execution wasn't there all the time, but there's two or three chances in every power play. When things are going good they go in the back of the net. They're getting chances, it's getting better. They're doing the best they can."

Pacioretty scored his second goal of the season to open the scoring and give Vegas a lead early in the second period, but Vancouver tied the game when Horvat redirected Loui Eriksson shot from the point. Horvat's second goal made it 2-1 a minute later after he raced down the left side and unleashed a wicked wrist shot over Fleury's glove.

Reaves tied the game late in the second period with his second goal of the season.

"We knew they were going to come hard, but I thought we did a good job shutting that team down," Horvat said. "I think everyone's gelling together. Everyone's ambitious to prove ourselves that we can be a good contender, and so far we're proving that. Everyone was pretty pumped after the game, obviously having our dads here. You want to win in front of them."

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Game # 10

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Miller, white-hot Lightning beat struggling Knights 3-2

Tyler Johnson and Brayden Point each score in Tampa Bay's 3-2 victory over Vegas.

LAS VEGAS -- Andrei Vasilevskiy has a knack for shutouts -- and then backing them up.

Vasilevskiy followed his first shutout of the season by stopping 29 of 31 shots, J.T. Miller scored his third goal of the season and the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Vegas Golden Knights 3-2 on Friday.

The 24-year-old Russian goaltender, who blanked Colorado on Wednesday, went 6-1-1 last season in games following a shutout.

"He's just a good young goaltender. He was in a zone again tonight, you could see he was just tracking pucks," Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper said. "Our guys did a good job of letting him see pucks. ... If he can see them, he's usually gonna stop them. He was nominated for the Vezina (Trophy) last year, and that wasn't by fluke. When we have our breakdowns, he's been a rock for us. Give Vegas credit, they made a big push, but our goalie was there when we needed him and it's a big win in a tough spot on the road."

Tyler Johnson and Brayden Point also scored for the Lightning, who have not lost in regulation since their second game of the season, going 6-0-1 over that stretch.

Shea Theodore and William Karlsson scored for Vegas, while Marc-Andre Fleury made 20 saves.

Ten games into their inaugural season, the Golden Knights were 8-2-0. They didn't lose their fifth game until Nov. 7. Now, the defending Western Conference champions are 4-5-1 and sixth in the Pacific Division.

"Every year is a new year, so what you did the year before means absolutely nothing," Tampa Bay center Steven Stamkos said. "I'm sure if you ask them they'd say the same thing. Every year you have to go out and prove yourself as an individual, and you have to prove yourself as a team. They're a still a good team over there. You're not going to start the year with a great record every time. It's how you grow as a team. They still got the pieces to be an elite team in this league."

One piece that needs to improve for the Golden Knights is the power play. Though it notched a power play goal on Friday, Vegas still has the league's worst conversion rate with a man advantage, now 3 for 32. Tampa Bay owns the league's best penalty kill (35 of 37).

Johnson put the Lightning on the board early in the first period when he spotted a rebound in front of the net and chipped a shot past Fleury. Ryan Carpenter used the boards to slide a perfect pass to Theodore, who blasted a one-timer through traffic from the blue line and past Vasilevskiy to tie game a couple of minutes later. Later in the first, Stamkos delivered a pass into the slot for Point, who tapped the puck past Fleury.

Miller extended the lead to 3-1 early in the second. He was positioned perfectly in front of net when the puck deflected off him and past Fleury for a power-play goal.

Vegas outshot the Lightning 13-1 in the third period but came up empty after Karlsson ripped a wrist shot past Vasilevskiy on the glove side for a power-play goal with 18:13 left.

"I think there were some chances," Vegas coach Gerard Gallant said. "We've just got to keep executing and work at it."

Tampa Bay blocked 27 shots, including 17 in the third period.

"They had a lot of opportunities and they come at you with a lot of speed. It's tough to contain," Lightning defenseman Ryan McDonagh said. "I think our best player, for sure, in the third period was (Vasilevskiy). We had to block some shots. We gotta continue to play with a little more assertiveness in the third, especially with the lead."

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On 10/5/2018 at 9:04 AM, oilfieldhockey said:

Vegas has some good looking fans. Wow!

Are they really "fans"... 😉


Yeah, I'd ask for a date the second from left. You?

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And what has gone into Reaves - 3 goals in 11 games?! And now Gallant gave him even 2 mins of PP time against the Sens. Wow.


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Game # 11

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Marchessault's OT penalty shot lifts Vegas past Ottawa 3-2

Jonathan Marchessault tallies the game-winning goal on a penalty shot as the Golden Knights defeated the Senators.

LAS VEGAS -- Jonathan Marchessault had never attempted a penalty shot in his NHL career.

He made his first one count Sunday night.

Marchessault earned a penalty shot after being hooked by Mark Stone on what would have been a breakaway, and beat goalie Craig Anderson to lift the Vegas Golden Knights to a 4-3 overtime victory over the Ottawa Senators.

"I had one in the AHL, I think I did like almost the same move, I just went high glove," said Marchessault, who leads Vegas with 11 points this season. "I kind of knew a little bit what I was going to do, I just waiting ... I was able to put it where I wanted it."

The Golden Knights rallied from trailing 2-0 early and avoided their second three-game losing streak, after consecutive losses at home.

Alex Tuch scored two goals and Ryan Reaves added his third of the season for Vegas, while Marc-Andre Fleury made 19 saves.

Matt Duchene, Bobby Ryan and Ryan Dzingel scored for the Senators, while Anderson made 49 saves.

The Golden Knights outshot Ottawa, 53-22. In their first 10 games, the Golden Knights had 37 or more shots on goal just four times. They had 37 shots through two periods.

"Things weren't going well for us the first half of the game," Vegas coach Gerard Gallant said. "We were working hard, everything was going well except the puck wasn't going in the net and we found ourselves down 2-0. ... If we would have lost tonight, I would have been upset with not getting the two points, but the way we played was outstanding."

The victory, however, didn't come without the Golden Knights losing another player to injury for the second consecutive game. After losing forward Max Pacioretty, who left Friday's game after being drilled by Tampa Bay's Braydon Coburn, forward Cody Eakin left Sunday's game after being hit in the head by Mark Borowiecki in the first period.

"It was a big hit, I don't think Borowiecki wanted to go over there and exactly hit Cody Eakin in the head," Gallant said. "But the puck came to Cody right there and he was coming in with a lot of speed .... but I don't think there was any intent to try and hurt the guy."

Duchene gave the Senators an early 1-0 lead in the first period, and Ryan extended Ottawa's lead midway through the second period, when he punched home the Senators' first road power-play goal of the season.

"Our players are giving everything they've got, we talked about having 60 minutes of keeping it together and that's exactly what our players did," Ottawa coach Guy Boucher said "That's the difference with the previous two games (against) Boston and Colorado, where we played really good for two periods and then just because the other team scored, whether it's the end of the second or beginning of the third, all of a sudden we start to get out of whack, impatient, lose our structure ... we didn't do that tonight. The composure was there the entire game. That's a big building block for us."

Tuch, who missed the first eight games of the season with a lower-body injury, notched his first goal of the season when he went forehand-backhand to deke Anderson and cut Ottawa's lead in half. Reaves scored his first career power-play goal when he tied the game with 1:39 left in the second period.

Playing a nifty passing game of tic-tac-toe, Dzingel was the beneficiary as he scored his team-leading fourth road goal of the season to put Ottawa back on top. The lead didn't last long, though, as Tuch scored his second goal 28 seconds later.

"It's a big win, especially since we're going on the road for two really hard games against two really good opponents," Tuch said. "I thought we played really well today, we had a lot of shots, we had a lot of guys in front of the net, Craig Anderson played an unbelievable game, but we just kept battling."

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Game # 12

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Hartman scores twice as Predators beat Golden Knights 4-1

Ryan Hartman provides two goals for Nashville as they beat Vegas 4-1.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- After a lackluster opening period by the Nashville Predators, Ryan Hartman and Kevin Fiala went to work.

Hartman scored twice in a 57-second span and Juuse Saros made 23 saves to lead Nashville to a 4-1 victory over the Vegas Golden Knights on Tuesday night.

Calle Jarnkrok and Viktor Arvidsson also scored, and Fiala assisted on both of Hartman's goals for the Predators, who have won two of their last three.

Reilly Smith had the lone goal for Vegas, which has dropped three of four.

Trailing by a goal after one, Hartman and Fiala connected and turned a deficit into a lead just past the midpoint of the second period.

Hartman made it 1-1 at 11:27 of the second. From the left boards, Fiala passed to Hartman in the high slot.

Hartman danced around Vegas defender Colin Miller before making a move and beating Vegas goaltender Malcolm Subban high to the stick side, just beneath the crossbar.

"I was thinking shot," Hartman said. "He was pretty tight on his gap, so I was able to step around him and kind of have a 1-on-1 with the goalie there."

Fiala and Hartman teamed up again 57 seconds later to give Nashville a 2-1 lead. Nashville entered the Vegas zone on a 3-on-1. Fiala sent a nifty backhand pass from the right circle to Hartman at the left faceoff dot. Hartman did not get all of the puck with his one-timer, but he got enough to beat a sliding Subban high to the stick side.

"Today I was just thinking about playing the right way," Fiala said. "Just simple game and not thinking about too much, scoring goals or whatever. If you stop thinking, sometimes it works, and today obviously it did."

Fiala entered Tuesday with just three points in 11 games.

P.K. Subban, the older brother of the Vegas goaltender, picked up the secondary assist on the goal.

"I didn't think that we showed ourselves very well in the first period," Nashville coach Peter Laviolette said. "But I thought the team and the lines and the players showed pretty well in the second and third."

Smith scored the game's first goal at 17:14 of the first. With Vegas on a power play, an unchecked Smith skated to the left faceoff dot and snapped a wrist shot past Saros on the far side. Smith's goal was set up by a nice pass from Jonathan Marchessault along the right boards.

"They cashed in on our mistakes in the second period, and nobody stepped up after that," Marchessault said. "(Subban) was awesome tonight and we weren't there for him."

Making his fifth-straight start due to an injury to Pekka Rinne, Saros was sharp in the first, stopping 12 of 13 shots.

Jarnkrok gave Nashville a two-goal lead at 6:37 of the third. On another odd-man rush, Craig Smith sent a pass from the right side to Jarnkrok in the left circle, where he ripped a one-timer past Malcolm Subban, who finished with 24 saves.

"We made some bad choices on pinches that cost us a couple of goals tonight and gave them a lot of odd-man rushes," Vegas coach Gerard Gallant said. "That's not what we usually do and it cost us tonight."

With the Vegas goaltender pulled for an extra attacker with just over two minutes remaining in the third, Arvidsson was fouled from behind by Nick Holden on a breakaway and a goal was credited to the Swedish winger.

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Game # 13

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Sundqvist's 2 rare goals send Blues past Golden Knights 5-3

Oskar Sundqvist scores twice in the Blues' 5-3 win over the Golden Knights.

ST. LOUIS -- �� Oskar Sundqvist was concerned about more than just hockey after he sustained serious facial injuries on an illegal hit by Tom Wilson in a preseason game against the Washington Capitals on Sept. 30.

Sundqvist made a statement in his third game since getting back in the lineup by scoring two rare goals to lead the St. Louis Blues past the Vegas Golden Knights 5-3 on Thursday night.

The 24-year-old center from Sweden didn't think he would return to action this soon.

"I'm happy to be able to be back and mostly happy that my head is completely fine," Sundqvist said.

Vladimir Tarasenko, Tyler Bozak and Colton Parayko also scored for the Blues. Jake Allen stopped 31 shots for his first win against Vegas after going 0-0-2 last season.

"We're just connected more as a group," Allen said after the Blues won consecutive games for the first time this season. "Before we had spurts, but spurts aren't good enough in this league."

Sundqvist's second goal of the game -- and the season -- put the Blues ahead to stay 6:29 into the second period on a pass from Robert Thomas. Sundqvist entered with just two goals in 72 NHL games.

Blues coach Mike Yeo wasn't surprised by his performance.

"We've seen that upside," Yeo said. "I don't know that we're going to expect him to score two goals every single game he plays this year. He's moving better. He's playing with more confidence."

Parayko added some insurance when he rifled a one-timer from Ryan O'Reilly past Marc-Andre Fleury for his third of the season 14:51 into the second to make it 4-2.

Fleury allowed five goals, matching a season high, on 26 shots and fell to 5-5-1. He also gave up five goals on Oct. 4 versus Philadelphia.

"Usually when you give up five goals you say your goaltending wasn't good," Vegas coach Gerard Gallant said. "Well that wasn't the case at all. They could have had 10 goals."

Vegas cut its deficit to 4-3 when Alex Tuch scored his third of the season on a power play from point-blank range 8:02 into the third. Bozak responded with his third goal 3:45 later.

"I thought on our end we got a little lackadaisical," Tuch said. "We gave them too many opportunities, too many chances, and that's what happens."

Tarasenko got his team-leading sixth goal when he used his backhand to push Bozak's deflected shot into the wide-open near side of the net to give St. Louis a 2-1 edge 3:11 into the second.

Erik Haula tied it only 23 seconds later with his second of the season as his shot from the point trickled through Allen's pads.

Pierre-Edouard Bellemare made it 1-all at 6:29 when he beat Allen from in front after the Blues failed to clear the puck from behind the net.

Sundqvist scored his first goal 2:02 into the first period. He found a loose puck in front of Fleury and turned on one knee to slide it into an open net. Thomas also assisted on that goal and ended up with his first career multipoint game.

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Game # 14

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Fleury earns 50th career shutout, Vegas blanks Carolina 3-0

Brad Hunt, Ryan Reaves and William Carrier all score as Vegas tops Carolina 3-0.

LAS VEGAS -- After losing both games on a road trip, Vegas coach Gerard Gallant called a team meeting when the Golden Knights returned home.

The goal was to get the defending Western Conference champs back on the same page with one another, reminding them what they're capable of after reaching last year's Stanley Cup Final.

They responded Saturday night.

Marc-Andre Fleury got his 50th career shutout, Brad Hunt and William Carrier scored their first goals of the season, and Vegas beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-0.

"I thought (the meeting) was good, just to remind ourselves of what we have to do and who we are and how we have to play consistently," Fleury said. "He didn't go out there yelling at everybody, just straightforward, just honest, just making sure we simplify our game. That's how we've had success before, and tonight we didn't do anything fancy. But we played hard all game and it paid off."

Fleury, who earlier this season moved into 10th place on the all-time list for victories, stopped 34 shots. The 15-year veteran now has 410 wins, and is the 29th goaltender in NHL history to record 50 shutouts.

Ryan Reaves equaled his goal tally from last season by scoring his fourth for the Golden Knights.

"I thought we played our game tonight, and that's what we were worried about," Gallant said. "We're trying to play a 60-minute game, and we're trying to compete and battle hard and get back to the things that make us successful and I think tonight we did that."

Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour said prior to the game he likes his team feeding off the adrenaline of playing back-to-back nights, but Carolina is now 1-2 on the second of consecutive games.

After sitting out Friday's 4-3 overtime loss in Arizona, goaltender Scott Darling made 22 saves for the Hurricanes, who never found a rhythm offensively and continued their dismal power play. Carolina, which came in with the worst power play in the NHL, was 0 for 3 with a man advantage. The Hurricanes are now 6 for 51 this season.

Since opening the season 4-0-1, the Hurricanes are on a 2-6-2 slide, during which they've scored 17 goals after scoring 22 in their first five games.

"Tonight was probably the game I didn't like the most out of all of them, but even saying that, it was a grind game," Brind'Amour said. "We gotta start finding ways to put the puck in the net, and that's been the challenge here."

Carolina's closest chance at a goal came midway through the third, but Justin Williams gloved the puck in after it hit the crossbar, resulting in a no goal. Moments later, on a power play, Michael Ferland's wrist shot clanked off the goal post.

"They had a lot of shots on net, but they get a lot of shots every night, they put pucks to the net and they go hard to the net," Gallant said of the Hurricanes. "They got a real good team over there."

While Erik Haula has a point in four of the last six games and has two assists in a game six times this season, the positivity from Gallant's words in the closed-door meeting were contagious enough to spark fourth-liners Reaves and Carrier, and Hunt, a consistent healthy scratch who was playing in only his fifth game this season.

"When we're winning hockey games those guys are a big part of our group and it's good to see them get rewarded tonight," Gallant said. "I know our players are real happy with those guys putting the puck in the night."

Hunt opened the scoring after getting Haula's perfectly placed pass and burying it past Darling.

Reaves found the back of the net with a backhand that slipped under Darling's pads to extend Vegas' lead to 2-0 early in the second period. Reaves, who scored a career-high seven goals during the 2016-17 season, while playing for St. Louis, is on pace to score 23 goals this season.

Finally, after a forecheck created a turnover in Carolina's zone, Carrier was able to punch the rebound past Darling through the five hole to give Vegas a 3-0 lead.

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Game # 15

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Andersen makes 36 saves to lift Leafs over Golden Knights

Mitch Marner rips a wrist shot past Marc-Andre Fleury as Toronto beats Vegas 3-1.

TORONTO -- There have been times this season when the Maple Leafs felt they deserved a better fate on home ice.

That wasn't the case Tuesday night.

Frederik Andersen made 36 saves to lift the Toronto Maple Leafs over the Vegas Golden Knights 3-1.

The visitors had 82 shot attempts compared to the Leafs' 40, including a 40-13 edge in a second period where Toronto barely touched the puck.

"We didn't get on the forecheck," Leafs forward Mitch Marner said. "Freddie Andersen has been unbelievable for us every single game. ... He's the reason we stole one tonight."

Connor Brown, Marner and Nazem Kadri scored for Toronto (10-5-0), which came in just 3-5-0 at Scotiabank Arena compared to a perfect 6-0-0 on the road.

"We got fooling around with the puck and they showed us how fast they were," said Toronto coach Mike Babcock, whose team registered a season-low 21 shots. "We were lucky to get out of the second."

Cody Eakin scored for Vegas (6-8-1), which got 18 stops from Marc-Andre Fleury.

"A lot was real good," Knights head coach Gerard Gallant said. "I liked the way we came in here and played against a real good Toronto team."

Despite the lopsided shot clock, Andersen credited his teammates with getting him clear looks at the majority of the attempts on goal.

"We're keeping a little bit more to the outside," Andersen said. "That makes my job easier."

The Knights were by far the better team through two periods and had a couple of opportunities to tie it early in the third down 2-1 only to have Andersen shut the door.

Patrick Marleau nearly made it 3-1 for Toronto moments later off a pass from Kasperi Kapanen on a 2-on-1 rush, but the veteran flubbed his shot wide.

The Knights got forward Max Pacioretty back from an upper-body injury but are still without center Paul Stastny. They lost another forward when Erik Haula went down with an apparent right leg injury five minutes into the third.

Haula, who collided with Marleau along the boards, stayed down for a few minutes as he was attended to by trainers from both teams before being stretchered off.

The Knights' power play, which came in ranked 28th, got a chance with under nine minutes left in regulation when Jake Gardiner went off for slashing, but it was unable to score.

Fleury made nice stops on Marner and John Tavares before Andersen stopped Rielly Smith's effort from the goal line with his arm and body with 2:33 left.

Vegas kept its foot on the gas with Fleury on the bench for an extra attacker, but couldn't get much in the way of pressure before Kadri scored his fourth into an empty net with 34.1 seconds left.

"It's very frustrating," Vegas defenseman Shea Theodore said. "We're starting to play more of our style and we're starting to play a better game, but we're not burying those chances."

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On 10/29/2018 at 4:00 AM, Hockey-78 said:

Are they really "fans"... 😉


Yeah, I'd ask for a date the second from left. You?


Good choice. For the 2nd overall, I'll pick the first from the right !

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Game # 16

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Carrier scores game-winner, Golden Knights top Senators 5-3

William Carrier and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare both score crucial third-period goals to push the Knights to a 5-3 win over the Senators.

OTTAWA, Ontario -- In the midst of a so-so sophomore season, the Golden Knights finally scored in bunches.

William Carrier put Vegas ahead for good after Ottawa rallied from a three-goal deficit, and the Golden Knights beat the Senators 5-3 on Thursday night.

Vegas, which reached the Stanley Cup final in its inaugural season but has hovered around .500 so far in this campaign, scored more than three goals in regulation for the first time since Oct. 16, a span of nine games.

"We played a real good game," coach Gerald Gallant said. "The puck finally went in the net for us so that was a real key for us to get five goals. We're happy with that."

Jonathan Marchessault, Shea Theodore, Nick Holden and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare also scored for the Golden Knights. Marc-Andre Fleury made 27 saves.

Matt Duchene, Ryan Dzingel and Thomas Chabot scored for the Senators, who fell behind 3-0 late in the second period before coming back to tie it in the third. Craig Anderson stopped 37 shots.

Trailing 3-1 to start the third, Ottawa scored twice in just over a minute to make it 3-3. Dzingel scored at 6:57, and Chabot converted into a wide-open net as Fleury was caught sprawling.

Vegas regained the lead about a minute later as Carrier won a battle along the boards, stepped around Mark Borowiecki and beat Anderson stick side.

Bellemare got the final goal into a wide-open net after Anderson got tangled with Carrier. The Senators challenged unsuccessfully for goaltender interference, a call that infuriated coach Guy Boucher, who said he isn't sure what constitutes interference anymore.

"I don't know anymore," Boucher said. "All of us together, we just don't know anymore. I'll let them decide and that's it. I can't make it, whether it's our game or somebody else's game. I guess that's why I'm not paid for those decisions."

The goal with 8 minutes remaining was deflating for the Senators.

"It's human nature," Boucher said. "I was 100 percent sure it was going to be goaltender interference, so it's just mind-boggling so by the time you get rid of the frustration and all that it's two goals. If it's one goal, it might have been different."

Vegas dominated much of the second period and took a 3-0 lead late when Holden jumped into the play and lifted the puck over Anderson's right shoulder. It was the well-traveled defenseman's first goal for Vegas.

Ottawa finally solved Fleury 29 seconds later when the goalie poke-checked Chabot and the puck went right to Duchene. Mike Stone picked up an assist, extending his point streak to five games.

"I thought we did some really good things," Duchene said. "Obviously when you tie it 3-3 in the third, it can go either way. We had the momentum, so tough way to lose."

Duchene's goal came after Borowiecki accepted a challenge from Ryan Reaves to drop the gloves.

"There's been a couple high hits on our team the last couple weeks," Reaves said. "Everybody knows that if you're going to do that, you're going to have to answer the bell. Good on him for answering the bell, not a lot of guys will do that, but good on him."

The Knights got two power-play goals in the first period. Marchessault opened the scoring 15 minutes in, and with 20 seconds remaining, Theodore fired a puck from just inside the blue line through traffic and past Anderson.

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Game # 17

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Canadiens beat Golden Knights to spoil Pacioretty's return

Canadiens Andrew Shaw rips two goals to help Montreal take down Las Vegas 5-4.

MONTREAL -- While all eyes were on former Montreal captain Max Pacioretty, it was the player the Canadiens traded for who led his new team to a come-from-behind victory.

Tomas Tatar scored the game-winner in the third period as the Canadiens defeated the Vegas Golden Knights 5-4 on Saturday night in Pacioretty's return to Montreal.

Pacioretty was dealt to the Golden Knights in the offseason in return for Tatar, prospect Nick Suzuki and a second-round draft pick.

"It felt good, for sure," said Tatar, who played 20 games with Vegas last season. "I was extremely motivated to beat my old teammates and it was a special game against them."

Tatar broke a 4-4 deadlock with 7:43 left in the game when his cross-crease pass to Phillip Danault deflected off Shea Theodore's stick and in.

"It was a lucky bounce," said Tatar, who has 15 points in 17 games this year. "I wanted to give it to Phil. He supplies me and (Brendan Gallagher) a lot through the season and I saw him on the left side and I wanted to pass it to him. It was a good bounce."

The Canadiens (9-5-3) came from behind twice to snap a two-game losing skid.

Tatar's goal -- his seventh of the season -- came three minutes after Andrew Shaw scored his second of the game to tie the score at 4-4. Montreal was also down 2-0 after the first period.

Pacioretty was held pointless despite taking a game-high nine shots on goal in his first match at the Bell Centre as a visiting player. The 29-year-old had a minus-2 rating in 20:46 of ice time.

Pacioretty, who played 10 seasons with the Canadiens, was given a standing ovation following a video tribute before the start of the game.

"I really wanted to win," said Pacioretty, who has two goals in 13 games this season. "I always appreciate the support I get from the fans here. I'll remember that for a while.

"No matter what, I was going to be going tonight. Seemed like the story of our year so far, mine in particular. It just seemed to not go in and all the opportunities against are going in. If we keep going like that, it's going to eventually break wide open for us.

"I felt good out there. I just wanted to win bad."

The Golden Knights took a 2-0 lead after one period on goals by Brad Hunt and Jonathan Marchessault.

Hunt scored on the power play at 17:40 for his second of the season.

Marchessault scored 57 seconds later -- his team-leading 15th point of the season -- when Reilly Smith's shot went off his skate and in.

Vegas outshot Montreal 15-4 in the first period.

The Canadiens were a different team after the intermission, scoring three unanswered goals in a 3:53 span to take a 3-2 lead.

"The guys fought hard," said Shaw, who notched his first multi-goal game in more than a year.

"We didn't have the start we wanted. ... We got motivated in the intermission, came out flying and found a way to win."

Charles Hudon cut the deficit in half at 6:40, on a pass by Jesperi Kotkaniemi, as he cut sharply across the crease and avoided Marc-Andre Fleury's stick check for the easy tap-in.

Taking advantage of a scramble in front of Fleury's net, Shaw tied it at 7:09 with a backhand shot that just trickled past the goal line.

Kotkaniemi gave Montreal its first lead of the game at 9:57, before Alex Tuch made it 3-3 at 14:34 of the second.

William Karlsson scored a power-play goal at 3:27 of the third period.

Antti Niemi improved to 4-1-0 with a 34-save effort. Starter Carey Price served as Niemi's backup after allowing at least four goals in four straight games.

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Game # 18

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Halak shuts down Golden Knights in Bruins' 4-1 win

Brad Marchand finds a bouncing puck and backhands it past Malcolm Subban to give the Bruins a 3-0 lead less than a minute into the 2nd period.

BOSTON -- After a rough couple of seasons, Jaroslav Halak is at the top of his game again.

Halak stopped 37 shots to help the Boston Bruins to a 4-1 victory over the Vegas Golden Knights on Sunday night.

"We've seen it from Day 1," Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy said of Halak, who signed with the Bruins in July after four seasons with the New York Islanders. "I couldn't sit here and tell you that he would be leading the league in goals-against or save percentage, but the guys are just confident in front of him."

Halak had to play back-to-back games this weekend with Tuukka Rask on personal leave from the team and won both while allowing only two goals.

"I had a good sleep last night," Halak said. "It's different when you play at home and you can sleep in your own bed."

Halak was the odd man out for the New York Islanders two years ago and spent 27 games in the minors before being called back up at the end of the season. After two subpar seasons, he is in the top three in goals against and save percentage and has only one regulation loss.

David Pastrnak scored again, and Danton Heinen, Jeremy Lauzon and Brad Marchand also had goals as Boston won for the fourth time in six games. Halak has won all three starts against the Golden Knights while allowing a total of five goals.

Cody Eakin scored for Vegas and Malcolm Subban finished with 33 saves. The Golden Knights lost for the third time in four games on their road trip.

"It's tough, we got into penalty trouble there with all those 5-on-3's," Subban said. "We didn't get the results we wanted."

One day after his second hat trick of the season, Pastrnak scored on the power play for his league-leading 16th goal to cap the scoring with 3:52 left.

The Bruins had seven power plays, including three two-man advantages.

"I thought we played a couple of good games on this road trip, but tonight wasn't one of them," Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant said.

Heinen scored on a tip 2:54 into the game and Lauzon got the first of his career into an empty net as he took advantage of Subban's misplay off the end boards with 2:09 left in the opening period.

Marchand made it 3-0 just as a Bruins power play ended when he flipped the puck past Subban from his knees at the top of the crease 58 seconds into the second.

Eakin converted a pass from Alex Tuch with 9:05 remaining in the middle period to get Vegas on the scoreboard.

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Game # 19

Vegas.gif 5 duckssmall.png 0

Eakin scores 2, Fleury gets shutout as Vegas beats Ducks 5-0

Cody Eakin sends a wrist shot to the back of the net, then scores on a breakaway less than 10 minutes later to give the Golden Knights a 4-0 lead.

LAS VEGAS -- Last season, Cody Eakin didn't score his seventh goal until Feb. 21. He did it more than three months earlier this time.

Eakin scored his sixth and seventh goals of the season, Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 29 shots for his third shutout, and the Vegas Golden Knights beat the Anaheim Ducks 5-0 Wednesday night.

"I don't know what it is, just having fun, I think that's important, to play the game, enjoy it and have fun," said Eakin, whose career high is 19 goals but is currently on pace to score 38. "The pucks are going in right now, there will be times when they aren't, but I'm going to try and ride it."

Alex Tuch and Nick Holden each had a goal and an assist, Tomas Hyka also scored and Max Pacioretty added two assists to help the Golden Knights match their season-high scoring total.

"They know tonight was a big hockey game for our group," coach Gerard Gallant said. "I thought we played our game tonight. I thought we worked really hard defensively, we did a lot of good things in the D zone, and that started our offense. Guys went to the net and they scored some nice goals tonight. Hopefully we got a little bit of our mojo back."

Fleury, meanwhile, earned his 412th career victory while sporting a pair of brand new gold pads.

"A little bit more flashy than my other ones," Fleury said about his pads, which generated more conversation than his 51st shutout that moved him into a tie with four others for 24th all-time. "I just thought, we're the Golden Knights, might as well try a little golden gear and have a little swagger out there."

It was the second straight home shutout for the Golden Knights and Fleury, who struggled during the team's recent 1/3 road trip. Going 1-2 in Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal, the 15-year veteran allowed 10 goals.

"I feel sometimes when it doesn't go well, for goalies, you want to do too much instead of just being patient and relax and reacting," Fleury said. "They're a team that throws the puck at the net, but they always have lots of guys around the net. But this is the best place to play. It's so loud, the atmosphere here every night is awesome."

It marked the second time the Golden Knights and Fleury defeated their Pacific Division rival at home this season.

"Obviously, Flower made some key saves, but I thought we had some great jump the second period, it was an excellent period for us," Gallant said. "We got a few puck lucks tonight, we got some breaks tonight finally. Hopefully it's gonna turn for us."

John Gibson started for Anaheim and gave up three goals on 12 shots before being pulled at 7:19 of the second period. Ryan Miller came on and stopped 11 of the 13 shots he faced.

The Ducks came into their second meeting with Vegas this season after limiting opponents to two goals or fewer in 10 games but couldn't keep the Golden Knights' second line in check as Tuch, Eakin and Pacioretty each had two points.

After spending a majority of last season on the third line, Eakin has been a welcome addition to the second line, back alongside Tuch, now that Erik Haula is on the injured reserve list.

"When Cody came up, I thought we had interesting chemistry," said Tuch, who has a point in his last four games, and in seven of the 11 games he's played in after missing the first eight games. "Cody and I played together from the start of the season pretty much last year. ... I think the chemistry's always been there. I think we're just connecting on some plays that we haven't, bearing down on some areas that we weren't able to last year. And Pacioretty coming on to that line is a huge asset."

Tuch got things started when he grabbed a rebound and popped it past Gibson late in the first period. Vegas went up 2-0 just 25 seconds into the second, when Tuch fed Eakin, who sniped Gibson with a wrist shot above the glove.

Holden was credited with the next goal after his shot from the point caromed off the end board and into the crease, where Ducks center Adam Henrique accidentally put the puck past Gibson, who was pulled immediately afterward.

But the red-hot Eakin skated in on a breakaway and scored his seventh of the season with a backhand over Miller's glove two minutes later, making it 4-0.

Hyka got his first goal of the season when he skated in from the left wing and beat Miller stick side.

"When they got the emotions going and they got fired up, you can expect that kind of pace from their hockey club, and I don't think that's a surprise to us," Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle said. "After our last game, we didn't seem in the competitive spirit, and that surprises us."

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Game # 20

Vegas.gif 1 bluessmall.png 4

O'Reilly scores twice, Blues beat Golden Knights 4-1

Ryan O'Reilly moves from left to right and squeezes the puck between the goals legs to tie the game at 1-1.

LAS VEGAS -- ��� St. Louis forward David Perron has zero points in two games against the Vegas Golden Knights.

He has two wins, though.

Perron made an emotional return to Vegas and Ryan O'Reilly scored twice to lead the Blues over the Golden Knights 4-1 on Friday night. Brayden Schenn and Oskar Sundqvist also scored for St. Louis.

"It's fun from the warm-up on to the last minute," said Perron, who had a career-best 66 points with Vegas last season. "Obviously a lot of energy in this crowd and it's always fun coming here. I got so many messages. ... I feel the love from this city for sure."

Perron, who set the NHL record for most assists (50) by a player on an expansion team with the Golden Knights before signing with St. Louis as a free agent, made it no secret he wanted to re-sign with Vegas, but couldn't come to terms with the club during the offseason.

"It's unfortunate how it worked out," Perron said. "I still wish it could've been different."

While the Blues improved to 2-0-0 against Vegas and 4-1-0 against the Pacific Division this season, the Golden Knights are struggling to find the same magic they had during last year's run to the Stanley Cup Final.

Vegas had scored four or more goals in three of its past four games but was shut down by Jake Allen. The Blues goalie stopped 32 shots after allowing three or more goals in five of his previous six outings.

"We know what kind of team they are," Allen said. "We played them a couple of weeks ago ... very offensive, very opportunistic team. They usually get their chances most games and we were able to shut them down."

William Carrier scored for the Golden Knights, and Marc-Andre Fleury made 31 saves.

After posting a career-best 2.24 goals against average last season, Fleury's 2.52 GAA is his second-highest since the 2009-10 season.

Sundqvist, who has six goals in his 79-game career, has scored three of them against Fleury this season, also scoring two on Nov. 1 in a 5-3 win at St. Louis.

"It's been working against Vegas so far this season," Sundqvist said "I've gotten a lot of help with all the goals from my linemates and D-men. I don't know why it's been working, especially against Fleury, because I never scored on him before."

Moments after Vegas opened the scoring with Carrier's breakaway goal against Allen, the Blues tied it when O'Reilly flipped it just under Fleury's arm.

St. Louis took a 2-1 lead in the second period when O'Reilly deflected Jaden Schwartz's shot from the right wing. Schenn scored off a faceoff for a 3-1 lead later in the period, and Sundqvist scored 59 seconds later.

The Golden Knights have been outscored in the second period 28-17.

"It's early in the season I know, but this has happened way too often," center Pierre-Edouard Bellemare said. "I think the coaches probably have a better answer than I will have. It's one bad bounce and then suddenly we're two or three behind. I really couldn't pinpoint what is going on. But it seems to happen every time in the second."

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