Jonathan Marchessault and Max Pacioretty scored 45 seconds apart late in the third period to rally the Vegas Golden Knights to a 3-2 victory over the Colorado Avalanche in the second round of the West Division playoffs on Friday night in Las Vegas.
Marc-Andre Fleury made 18 saves and William Karlsson also scored a goal for Vegas, which still trails the best-of-seven series, 2-1. Game 4 is Sunday night, also in Las Vegas.
Marchessault tied it, 2-2, with 5:18 to go when he banked in his own rebound from behind the goal line off Grubauer’s leg and into the net for his 17th career playoff goal.
Pacioretty then made it 3-2 when he redirected Nick Holden’s shot from the left point under Grubauer for his second goal of the playoffs and the game-winner.
Mikko Rantanen and Carl Soderberg scored goals for Colorado, which had its six-game postseason winning streak snapped. Rantanen, who scored the overtime winner in Game 2, extended his playoff point streak to 17 games. Only five players in NHL history have recorded a longer point streak that spanned multiple playoff years.
Philipp Grubauer finished with 40 saves and had a 10-game postseason win streak snapped.
Vegas, playing before its first sellout crowd at T-Mobile Arena since March 2020, came out strong as expected in the first period, outshooting the Avalanche, 14-3, and finishing with a 12-2 edge in scoring chances but couldn’t get a shot past Grubauer.
The Golden Knights finally broke through at the 4:38 mark of the second period when Karlsson backhanded in a rebound of an Alex Pietrangelo shot to give Vegas its first lead of the series. It was the third goal of the playoffs for Karlsson.
But Colorado tied it just 89 seconds later on Soderberg’s first goal since rejoining the Avalanche from the Chicago Blackhawks at the trade deadline. The score came when Pierre-Edouard Bellemare fired a slap shot from the left circle that bounced off Fleury’s glove to the right side of the net, where Soderberg slapped in the rebound inside the right post.
The Avalanche then took a 2-1 lead early in the third period on a power-play goal by Rantanen eight seconds after Nicolas Roy was called for a hooking penalty.
Rantanen took a pass from Cale Makar in the high slot and then slapped a shot past a screen by Joonas Donskoi and Fleury’s glove side for Colorado’s fifth power play goal of the series.
–Field Level Media