The Vegas Golden Knights fought back from a 2-0 hole against the San Jose Sharks on Monday to win 3-2 in a shootout. Vegas won its seventh straight game and seventh against the Sharks this season.
The game started with an honoring of Patrick Marleau. Marleau broke Gordie Howe’s record for most NHL games by skating in his 1768th on Monday. Marleau skated 17:21, recording a takeaway and one shot on goal but went without a point.
On Vegas’ end, Reilly Smith was declared out for this game before the contest and was replaced in the lineup by Dylan Coghlan. Coghlan spent time as both a forward and defenseman throughout the game, playing 15:12 (including 24 seconds shorthanded) and generating one shot.
Mattias Janmark replaced Smith on the line with William Karlsson and Jonathan Marchessault. Janmark skated 18:31 and generated two shots on goal with one takeaway. Janmark also skated on the first power-play unit in his first home game with the Golden Knights, playing 3:35 on the man advantage.
The Sharks started the scoring about halfway through the first period, as Nikolai Knyzhov beat Robin Lehner on a shot from the blue line. The Sharks doubled their lead 22 seconds into the second period as Noah Gregor also scored a relatively weak goal.
Vegas’ power play started out rough in this game, recording three shots in four minutes in the first period and one high-danger chance. However, that turned around with Vegas’ first goal.
The Golden Knights scored for the first time in this game less than a minute after Gregor’s goal. Mark Stone deflected a Shea Theodore shot from the point on the power play into the net:
The goal puts Stone on a five-game point streak.
Stone cashed in again on the next Vegas power play in the third period, tying the game at two at 3:29 of the frame:
Stone, Max Pacioretty and Theodore all had two points in this game. No other Golden Knight had one.
Alex Tuch won the game for the Golden Knights by being the lone scorer in the shootout. Chandler Stephenson took the other chance for Vegas but missed wide. Lehner stopped all three shootout attempts from the Sharks.
Vegas’ penalty kill allowed two shots and zero high-danger chances in 3:11 against the Sharks’ 27th-ranked power play.
The Golden Knights had trouble overcoming Martin Jones, especially early on in this contest. Jones made 38 saves on 40 shots between regulation and overtime, including making 35 saves on 35 shots at even strength.
Lehner, on the other end, made 29 saves on 31 shots, with both goals coming at 5-on-5.
Vegas’ even-strength play was better than San Jose’s throughout the game, as the Golden Knights put up 35 shots to 28 against at even strength. The Golden Knights also generated 3.54 expected goals to 3.03 against.
However, Vegas started out poorly, taking eight shots to San Jose’s 10 in the first period at 5-on-5. The Golden Knights produced three giveaways in this game but seemed even sloppier, and the Sharks produced five takeaways.
The Golden Knights passed the Colorado Avalanche for the points lead in the West Division with the victory. Vegas now has 66 points to Colorado’s 64 (Colorado has two games in hand).
The Golden Knights face the Sharks again on Wednesday at 6:30 at T-Mobile Arena.