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Golden Knights Nearly Blow 4-Goal Lead, Still Manage Win Over Senators

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Jonathan Marchessault Vegas Golden Knights Thomas Chabot Ottawa Senators (Photo- Vegas Golden Knights via Twitter)
Jonathan Marchessault, Vegas Golden Knights (Photo- Vegas Golden Knights via Twitter)

Good teams find ways to win hockey games, and that is exactly what the Vegas Golden Knights (10-2-0, 20 points) did Thursday against the Ottawa Senators (4-6-0, 8 points) for a 5-4 win. The VGK played their worst defensive game of the year and blew a 5-1 lead. But they held on for their tenth win of the season.

The Golden Knights made no lineup changes, sticking with Logan Thompson in goal.

Right off the bat, the VGK were off to a solid start, with Mark Stone scoring against his former team. His linemates, Jack Eichel and Chandler Stephenson, were hard on the forecheck and pressured Thomas Chabot into making a brutal turnover right to Stone’s stick.

This would be the theme of the game for the entire night, as both teams were abysmal defensively. It seemed as if the team with the least amount of costly turnovers would win.

Stone’s goal was the sixth time the Golden Knights scored in the opening five minutes this season. But the Senators tied the game with a long-range goal from Claude Giroux, who scored from the neutral zone. The puck skipped in on Thompson for a goal that he would love to have back.

The Golden Knights answered back with a powerplay goal in the first. The chemistry between William Karlsson and Reilly Smith was evident as Karlsson made a slick move to set up Smith for the goal.

Another beautiful passing play by the Golden Knights finished off the first period. Eichel set up the play after Jake Sanderson couldn’t handle a puck, and Stone and Zach Whitecloud played tic-Zach-toe for a late first-period goal.

In the second, the Golden Knights put the puck in the back of the net during two powerplay chances. One was their own, with the goal coming from Eichel, but the goal was called for an offsides. The other came on the Senator’s powerplay as Chandler Stephenson, and Nicolas Roy teamed up for a shorty.

To continue the offensive explosion for the Golden Knights, Will Carrier scored this second goal in as many games with a drive to the net.

There wasn’t a pinpoint moment in the game that changed the course of things for the Senators. Both teams were struggling defensively since the opening faceoff. But for the Senators, they started to come back after Anton Forsberg was pulled, and fresh-off-an-injury-goaltender Cam Talbot came in.

Giroux scored his second of the game on the powerplay, and then Tim Stutzle joined in with two goals himself. The Golden Knights continued to make costly defensive mistakes, and it was 5-4 just like that.

Like Zach Morris, the Golden Knights were saved by the bell as time ran out and they won 5-4.

VHN’s Player of the Game: Logan Thompson

Amidst all the defensive chaos, Logan Thompson (Giroux goal aside) played well and made a career-high 42 saves in the win.

Up Next: The Golden Knights continue their eastern game road trip Saturday at 4:00 p.m. against the Montreal Canadiens.

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