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Eichel Scores Buzzer Beater, Golden Knights Defeat Senators 2-1

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Vegas Golden Knights goal celebration Jack Eichel Ottawa Senators buzzer beater (Photo- At&t Sportsnet screenshot)

With a goal at 19:54 into the third period, Jack Eichel scored on the powerplay and gave the Vegas Golden Knights (32-21-4, 68 points) a 2-1 win over the Ottawa Senators (19-31-5, 43 points). The Golden Knights continued their dominance over the Senators franchise and are now 7-1 against them all-time.

Robin Lehner was remarkable in net stopping 39 of 40 saves. He picked up his 10th career win against his former team in the Senators. This is the most he has against any team in his career.

The road to victory for the Golden Knights was not so smooth though as they struggled to find offense against a team that had seven points scored on them by a single player the night before.

Max Pacioretty returned to the Golden Knights lineup after he missed four games with an upper-body injury. He rejoined the first line alongside Eichel and Nicolas Roy. Evgenii Dadonov was bumped down to the fourth line. Also in terms of lineup moves, Brayden McNabb was placed on IR and Daniil Miromanov was once again recalled from Henderson Silver Knights.

In his return to T-Mobile Arena, Nick Holden got a video tribute from the Golden Knights. Holden played three seasons and 139 games with the VGK.

Both teams traded chances early in the first period and ran up the shot totals. The final shot clock read 42-40 in favor of the Golden Knights, but most of the chances early were routine saves for both goaltenders. Set up by Jonathan Marchessault, Reilly Smith had two Grade-A one-timer chances.

Marchessault once again had a strong night for the Golden Knights. He finished the game with seven shots on goal. With his team-leading 24th goal of the season, he started the offense Sunday afternoon.

After blocking a shot from former Golden Knight draft pick Erik Brannstrom, Marchessault went in all alone on a breakaway and sniped one on Anton Forsberg in the top right corner.

This is Marchessault’s fourth goal in the last five games, and third in three straight games. He has points in five straight games and has been leading the Golden Knights offense by example.

The Senators answered on the powerplay after Michael Amadio took a tripping penalty. Brady Tkachuk shot one from tight in the slot and Lehner made the save. But when covering for the whistle, Lehner accidentally knocked the puck in himself with his glove.

This goof by Lehner was quickly forgotten as he went on to stand on his head and ensure the Golden Knight’s victory. The Golden Knights were slow in the third period and relied on Panda a little too much, but he was up to the challenge.

Lehner made huge stops on Zach Sanford and Colin White in the third period to keep the game tied. The Senators were outshooting the Golden Knights 13-2 halfway through the third period and led in scoring chances 10-0.

With the Golden Knight’s offense struggling, head coach Peter DeBoer shuffled up his lines. He tried out Dadonov on the third line as well as Marchessault and Chandler Stephenson on the first line with Eichel and Pacioretty.

The offense wasn’t there for the Golden Knights in the third period but luckily for them, they got a late-game powerplay with Michael Amadio drawing a tripping call on Thomas Chabot. With the Senators’ best defenseman in the box, the Golden Knights scored on the powerplay with just 5.2 seconds left.

After Pacioretty’s shot was blocked, Eichel threw one towards the net which slipped past Forsberg to seal the game. A dramatic finish to an entertaining game Sunday night at The Fortress.

Stay tuned for Vegas Hockey Now’s takeaways in about an hour. The Golden Knights, for the first time since early February, have strung together two straight wins. They start a five-game road trip against the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday.

VHN’s Player of the Game: Robin Lehner

The Golden Knights don’t win tonight without the play from Robin Lehner. He was remarkable and kept his team in the game facing a lot of shots. A huge game from Panda gets him a well-deserved POTG.

Welcome to your new home for Vegas Golden Knights breaking news, analysis and opinion. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and don't forget to subscribe to VHN+ for all of our members-only content the entire Vegas Hockey Now crew plus an ad-free browsing experience.

Owen Krepps covers the Vegas Golden Knights for Vegas Hockey Now and writes for the Boulder City Review-Journal. A 2022 Robert Morris University graduate, he has previously written for RMU Sentry Media, Colonial Sports Network, The Titusville Herald, Pittsburgh Sports Now, and Pittsburgh Hockey Now.

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