The Vegas Golden Knights secured their eighth consecutive victory with a 4-3 overtime win against the Toronto Maple Leafs Tuesday night at Scotiabank Arena.
It was the first road win against the Maple Leafs in franchise history and improved Vegas’ record to 12-2-0 on the year.
Reilly Smith scored the equalizer in the third period and finished the comeback with the game-winner just 23 seconds into overtime.
can you do somethin' for me? can you hit a lil' goal flex for me? pic.twitter.com/SW4kUus8h9— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) November 9, 2022
The Golden Knights recorded a season-low 20 shots in the game, including 11 in the second and third periods. But a strong night by the fourth line and a late push by the Misfits propelled Vegas to the win to complete the series sweep against Toronto.
Vegas capitalized on two turnovers in the first period, lighting the lamp twice on just eight shots in a relatively evenly-contested opening frame.
Nicolas Roy opened the scoring less than a minute into the game as he cleaned up the rebound on William Carrier’s breakaway chance.
fourth line been playing like a first line lately pic.twitter.com/ZrlP0qSkCS— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) November 9, 2022
The goal, which came just 45 seconds into the game, marked the 10th time Vegas scored first this season.
The Maple Leafs erased the deficit, evening things up at 1-1 at 5:05 of the first. Timothy Liljegren beat Logan Thompson far-side after a good keep by Toronto at the blue line.
☹ Timothy Liljegren scores against the Vegas Golden Knights to make it 1-1. @GoldenKnights #VegasBorn #LeafsForever pic.twitter.com/fWHUtnNeqg— Did VGK Score?! (@DidVGKScore) November 9, 2022
But Vegas reclaimed the lead late in the period as Jack Eichel finished off a beautiful passing play for his sixth of the year.
Eichel stole the puck, Chandler Stephenson fed Mark Stone down low and Stone set up Eichel for the backhanded backdoor tally to give Vegas a 2-1 lead with just 2:05 remaining in the first period.
Jack Eichel with the backhand pic.twitter.com/WeFJxWBBHD— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) November 9, 2022
The goal extended Eichel’s point streak to six games.
The first period was Vegas’ best of the game; Vegas and Toronto combined for 15 shots (8-7 Vegas), though Vegas held a 9-5 edge in scoring chances and 5-2 edge in high-danger chances at 5-on-5.
The Golden Knights had several prime scoring chances early in the second, including great looks by Keegan Kolesar and Carrier, but Maple Leafs netminder Erik Kallgren shut down both opportunities.
An outstanding individual effort by Mitch Marner erased Vegas’ lead at 13:50 of the middle frame. Marner took the puck off the wall, weaved through Vegas’ defense as he made his way across the zone and then beat Thompson with a nasty wrist shot from the slot.
Oh my word, Mitch Marner. That was FILTHY. pic.twitter.com/dft8JL8G4U— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) November 9, 2022
Toronto scored again just over three minutes later to take its first lead of the night. It was Liljegren once again, as he scored on a one-timer after a tough shift by the Golden Knights.
THE FEED:— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) November 9, 2022
The @MapleLeafs take the lead 3-2. pic.twitter.com/u5vHQP5ciN
Toronto outshot Vegas 14-5, led 21-10 in shot attempts and produced more than twice as many scoring chances (15-6) in the second period, outscoring Vegas 2-0 to take a 3-2 lead into the third.
Toronto continued to carry play early in the third, but the Vegas power kill made a clutch appearance to change the tide in Vegas’ favor.
Smith scored his second shorthanded goal of the year on a give-and-go with William Karlsson on Vegas’ fourth shot of the frame, making it a 3-3 game at 11:43 of the third.
reillysmithisonfire.mp4 pic.twitter.com/M3gWCNPWS4— Vegas Golden Knights (@GoldenKnights) November 9, 2022
Only two NHL teams (CHI, COL) have more shorthanded goals than Reilly Smith’s two this season. #VegasBorn— VGK Communications (@VGK_PR) November 9, 2022
The goal forced overtime, and Smith needed just 23 seconds to complete the comeback.
He scored his second of the game and team-leading seventh of the season with the game-winner, beating Kallgren on a top-shelf backhand shot after a perfect feed from Shea Theodore sent him in alone.
23 SECONDS INTO OT.— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) November 9, 2022
Reilly Smith ties it in the third to send the @GoldenKnights to overtime and then buries the @SUBWAYCanada OT winner. pic.twitter.com/uGxyM1t3x8
Smith has five goals in his last three games and has scored two goals in back-to-back contests.
Thompson made 28 saves on 31 shots for a .903 save percentage for his seventh win of the year.
The Golden Knights improved to 3-0 in overtime this season and are 4-0-0 through four games of this road trip.
Vegas will wrap up the road trip Thursday in Buffalo before returning for a home tilt against St. Louis on Saturday.