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FSM Essential Recap: Golden Knights vs Ducks – Game 56

Franchise Sports Media

Golden Knights (31-21-4)  | Anaheim Ducks (26-22-9)

 

The Vegas Golden Knights nearly blew a three-goal lead but survived Anaheim’s rally to secure a much-needed 5-4 win against the Ducks at Honda Center.

Golden Knights vs Ducks
Photo Credit: Ashley Landis/AP

Vegas scored four goals in the second period en route to collecting a critical two points.

The Golden Knights had won just two of their previous eight games, which left them hanging on to a playoff seed as the second wildcard team in the Western Conference standings. They temporarily move back into third place in the Pacific Division with the win.

It was Vegas’ best offensive output since scoring five goals against Buffalo on Feb. 1, and it came one night after the Golden Knights struggled to generate much of anything offensively in a 5-2 loss to Boston. It was the second time this season that the Golden Knights and Ducks found the back of the net seemingly at will (Anaheim defeated Vegas 6-5 back on December 1st). But this time, the Golden Knights prevailed, closing out their back-to-back on a high note.

Nicolas Roy led the way with the first two-goal game of his career, while Michael Amadio recorded his first three-point performance. It was a rough start for the road team, though, as the Golden Knights gave up a brutal goal in the first five minutes of the contest. Jakob Silfverberg opened the scoring at 4:47 of the first on a shot taken from the goal line that caught Laurent Brossoit off guard.

It’s a goal that Vegas cannot afford to give up at this stage of the season, though Brossoit followed it up with a key save on an unchecked Ryan Getzlaf in the slot. But the Golden Knights responded quickly, as Ben Hutton bested his former team by potting his second goal of the season — and the 100th point of his NHL career — just 2:13 later.

Hutton scored top-shelf from the slot off a feed from Amadio; Evgenii Dadonov was credited with the secondary assist, his first point since Jan. 20. The Golden Knights broke out with four goals in the first half of the second period, starting with Jonathan Marchessault’s 23rd of the season just 18 seconds into the frame.

Marchessault has five points on his current four-game point streak as the “Misfit Line” scored yet another full-line goal. But Anaheim erased that lead just over two minutes later when Nicolas Delauriers beat Brossoit on a slap shot from the point. The Golden Knights were out of gas and got caught flat-footed, and the shot found its way through traffic to make it 2-2 at 2:23 of the second.

 

From there, the Knights went on to score three straight.

 

Golden Knights vs Ducks
Photo Credit: Ashley Landis/AP

First up was Roy, who emphatically snapped a 15-game goalless drought, putting Vegas back on top less than 90 seconds later.

The goal set a new career-high, but he wasn’t finished. He added his second of the game just over three minutes later for his 10th of the year. Both goals came on second-chance opportunities. Amadio scored what turned out to be the game-winning goal at 9:44 of the second, tipping home a centering feed from Chandler Stephenson to make it 5-2.

The Golden Knights were more aggressive around the net, and they were rewarded multiple times. It was Amadio’s fifth goal of the year and third point of the night after assisting on Hutton’s goal and Roy’s second, making it the most productive game of his career.

But not surprisingly, Anaheim didn’t go quietly. Trevor Zegras scored with just 1:22 remaining in the second to cut the deficit to two. The puck found its way to Zegras, who roofed it over Brossoit’s shoulder to set up an intriguing third period.

The Ducks scored their second power-play goal of the game just 6:39 into the third as Troy Terry netted his 28th of the year. The Golden Knights had been on the power play, but a Reilly Smith tripping penalty cut Vegas’ man-advantage short and ultimately put the Ducks in a position to pull within one goal.

Terry had time and space as he got behind the Vegas defense, made a move, and beat Brossoit far-side on the backhand. Though the Ducks got yet another power play in the final 17 seconds of regulation, William Karlsson won a key faceoff late as the Golden Knights escaped Anaheim’s rally with the 5-4 win.

It’s a game the Golden Knights had to have, and they got it done. It might not have been as straightforward as it should have been, but there were some positive takeaways.

The Vegas offense looked a lot more confident, and the new line combinations seemed to do wonders for several players. Roy and Dadonov were able to snap their goalless and pointless droughts, and Amadio stepped up with an excellent performance.

 

The Vegas Golden Knights are back at T-Mobile on Sunday against Ottawa before heading out on a five-game road trip. They drop the puck at 5:00 pm and can be seen on AT&T Sports Net.

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-DJ Wood– Franchise Sports Media

Follow DJ on Twitter @DJWoody97

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