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VGK completes season sweep of Winnipeg

Vegas Golden Knights forwards Jonathan Marchessault and Mark Stone combined for four goals in the 6-5 win over the Winnipeg Jets Tuesday Dec. 13 in Winnipeg. VGK completed the season sweep of the Jets, taking each of the three matchups between the two teams this year.


“Takes you back to your junior days when it’s back and forth like that,” head coach Bruce Cassidy said. “At the end of the day, you have to play the game in front of you and we needed some goals tonight to overcome some mistakes and we got them.”


Marchessault’s line aka the second line for the Knights combined for three of six total goals scored from Vegas and all three came in the third period. Center William Karlsson’s empty net goal added to Marchessault’s earlier goals in the period.


Marchessault’s goals were both power play goals, making it a 2-for-3 night for the Vegas power play. The penalty kill allowed a goal while killing off the other penalty they faced for a 1-for-2 night.


“We ran some goal line to the slot plays and I think that after a while it started to free up Marchessault’s shot,” Cassidy said. “Sometimes, it’s just puck recovery and then rotate it to the net. That’s what happened on the last one.”


Six different Golden Knight players had multi-point games Tuesday night with center Chandler Stephenson leading the charge at four points scored, all of which were assists.


The win brings the Vegas record to 21-9-1 on the season with 43 points in the Pacific Division. Vegas currently holds the division lead by eight points over Seattle and have the third most points in the NHL behind Boston, Toronto, and New Jersey.


The Knights will wrap up this two-game road trip on Thursday in Chicago as they face the Blackhawks for the second of what will be three meetings between the teams this season. Vegas won the first meeting, 1-0, in their home opener this year.


Puck drop is set for 5:30 p.m. and can either be seen on AT&T Sportsnet in Las Vegas or ESPN+ everywhere else.


Stone’s first goal came with only two seconds remaining in the first period to give Vegas a 2-1 lead heading into the second period. His other goal came with 4:26 to go in the second period which gave Vegas a quick 3-2 lead.


Stone’s second goal was answered 39 seconds later by center Sam Gagner who tied the game 3-3 going into the final 20 minutes of play.


“He’s our leader,” Marchessault said. “He’s our captain. He’s been great on and off the ice for us. Anytime a guy gets rewarded, it’s meaningful because he plays so well everywhere and makes everyone on the ice look better. Definitely really happy for him.”


A total of five goals were scored between the two teams in the final period including three in the last 2:16 of the game.


“I thought he had more juice tonight,” Cassidy said. “He saw his folks last night so probably gave him a pep talk and off he went so good for him back to his hometown. Sometimes the puck is following you. He made some real nice plays, holding on to it around the blue line a couple times even when we didn’t score.”


Defenseman Daniil Miromanov got the scoring going for himself and the Knights in this one as he put home his first career NHL goal, tying the game at one apiece with 9:30 to play in the first period.


“I’m just happy that we won,” Miromanov said, “It was a really hard game, really tough to play here. I’m just trying to do my job every single day, fight hard, play hard in the D-zone.”


Miromanov finished his night with three points (1 goal, 2 assists). Prior to this game, Miromanov had only one point in 16 NHL games.

He’s done a good job moving his feet,” Cassidy said. “He’s got good puck skills and he can shoot it. He’s a big man and we’ll teach him how to defend better. All those things that when you come from Europe over here, it’s a little bit of a different game but the offense side of it, we want to keep encouraging to get that out of him.”


While on the topic of firsts, it was defenseman Brayden Pachal’s Golden Knight debut as he was called up from the Henderson Silver Knights to play on the third defense line alongside Ben Hutton.


Prior to this game, Pachal had two other NHL starts with the Calgary Flames.

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