John Locher / Assocaited Press
Published Sunday, Dec. 9, 2018 | 3:30 p.m.
Updated Sunday, Dec. 9, 2018 | 8:39 p.m.
There is something about T-Mobile Arena that brings out the best in the Golden Knights.
Vegas took a 3-1 lead into the third period and bent but never broke, holding on to capture a 4-2 lead against the Dallas Stars on Sunday.
It was the Golden Knights' fifth-consecutive home victory.
The key moment in the game was with 7:44 left in the game and Shea Theodore heading to the box for four minutes for a high-sticking double-minor. Vegas allowed the Stars only three shots on the power play and killed it off.
Any hope of a Dallas comeback was squashed when the Stars took a penalty for too many men on the ice with 1:07 to go and down 3-2. Reilly Smith scored an empty-net goal to seal it.
Marc-Andre Fleury was superb playing his 10th game in row and third in four nights, making 22 saves. He picked up his NHL-leading 17th win of the season.
The Stars did grab a power-play goal in the third, when Jason Spezza's shot deflected off Esa Lindell's skate and into the net. That cut the Vegas lead to 3-2 with 11:27 left in the third.
Come back to lasvegassun.com later for more coverage.
Knights score twice to grab lead after second period
The Golden Knights' second and third power plays of the game may have just expired, but they got a goals out of them anyway.
William Karlsson collected a Nate Schmidt pass and hesitated just long enough to create an opening on net. He fired a low frozen rope to beat Ben Bishop for his 10th of the year to give Vegas a 2-1 lead with 8:12 left in the second period.
On the next power play, Colin Miller whipped a shot to the net as Stars' forward Brett Ritchie raced out of the net. The shot was blocked, but Alex Tuch picked it up and whacked it through Bishop's legs to make it 3-1.
Dallas had a few good looks from its top line, including a breakaway opportunity from center Tyler Seguin, which Marc-Andre Fleury batted away with his blocker. Not long after, Seguin, Jamie Benn and Alexander Radulov tic-tac-toed the puck around to get a good luck, but Benn could not the corral the puck long enough to take a shot.
The Golden Knights led in shots after two periods, 22-16.
Carpenter scores first of the season
The third line is starting to click.
The trio of Oscar Lindberg, Ryan Carpenter and Tomas Nosek combined on the Golden Knights' goal on Saturday in Los Angeles, and Carpenter scored his first of the season with 3:48 to play to even Sunday's game against the Dallas Stars at 1-1.
Dallas hopped out to a 1-0 lead at 6:29 of the first on the power play. Dallas rookie defenseman Miro Heiskkanen fired a shot on net right into center Martin Hanzal, who deflected it past Marc-Andre Fleury and into the net.
It looked like the Stars scored earlier in the game. Jamie Benn sent the clean faceoff win to Tyler Seguin, who ripped it over Fleury's shoulder 53 seconds in. Referees reviewed it, and it somehow never crossed the line and the game stayed even.
The best thing about playing two games in two days is that if the first one doesn't go so well, you don't have a lot of time to dwell on it.
The Golden Knights took a 5-1 drubbing yesterday from the Los Angeles Kings, and are back home at 6 p.m. tonight for a date with the Dallas Stars. The Stars (35 points) and Golden Knights (33 points) are the two teams currently in the Western Conference's Wild Card spots.
"It's a disappointing loss obviously last night, and we gotta turn the page and be ready for today," forward Jonathan Marchessault said. "We need to definitely be ready because it's a big challenge for us and they have a great team."
Vegas will see of the NHL's premier forwards in Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin. They are the points leaders for Dallas this season after averaging nearly a point per game last season, and Alexander Radulov is right behind. Ben Bishop has been strong in net with a 2.23 goals-against average and .927 save percentage, and he is expected to start tonight against Vegas.
Dallas missed the postseason the last two years after winning the Central Division in 2015-16.
"They're obviously a team that's been on the cusp of being really good. They have a lot of firepower," forward Cody Eakin said. "They're a good team and you're going to have to bring your A-game if you want to have success."
Eakin played five seasons with the Stars from 2012-17 and had three assists in three games against Dallas last season. It was a prevailing storyline last season about Golden Knights facing their former teams, but Eakin said that feeling doesn't really go away.
"I think you always want to do well against your old team. They're a tough team. They're looking to make an impression this year, make a run and it should be a good measuring stick for us."
Vegas coach Gerard Gallant would not say who the starting goalie is, but after Marc-Andre Fleury allowed five goals yesterday in making his ninth-straight start, signs point to Malcolm Subban making his first start of the season, though that is not confirmed.
Emerson’s Prediction: Stars 3, Golden Knights 2
Season record for predictions: Keefer 5-4, Emerson 3-2
Pick to score the Golden Knights’ first goal: William Karlsson
Season record for first goal scored: Keefer 1-for-9, Emerson 0-for-5
TV: AT&T SportsNet (DirecTV 684, Cox 1313, CenturyLink 1760)
Radio: Fox Sports 1340 AM and 98.9 FM
Betting line: Golden Knights minus-146, Blackhawks plus-136; over/under: 6 (minus-110, plus-100)
Golden Knights (16-14-1) (9-3-1 home)
Coach: Gerard Gallant (second season)
Goals leader: Cody Eakin, Jonathan Marchessault (11)
Assists leader: Reilly Smith (15)
Expected goalie: Marc-Andre Fleury (2.53 gaa, .908 save percentage)
Dallas Stars (16-10-3) (6-7-2 road)
Coach: Jim Montgomery (first season)
Goals leader: Jamie Benn (12)
Assists leader: Tyler Seguin (18)
Expected goalie: Ben Bishop (2.23 gaa, .927 save percentage)
Golden Knights expected game day roster
Forwards (12): Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, William Carrier, Ryan Carpenter, Reid Duke, Cody Eakin, William Karlsson, Jonathan Marchessault, Tomas Nosek, Max Pacioretty, Ryan Reaves, Reilly Smith, Alex Tuch
Defensemen (6): Deryk Engelland, Nick Holden, Brayden McNabb, Colin Miller, Nate Schmidt, Shea Theodore
Goalies (2): Marc-Andre Fleury and Malcolm Subban