By W.G. RAMIREZ | Associated Press
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Evgenii Dadonov scored in overtime and the Vegas Golden Knights overcame a three-goal deficit in the third period to beat the Chicago Blackhawks 5-4 Saturday.
The Golden Knights trailed 3-0 entering the third but got goals from Chandler Stephenson, William Karlsson, Jack Eichel, and Alex Pietrangelo.
Dadonov then scored for the second time in two games since returning to Vegas' roster after the NHL negated a trade that sent him to Anaheim because of his no-trade clause.
It was Vegas' first ever victory in 58 games when trailing by at least three goals in the third period. The Golden Knights had been shut out in eight of their previous 11 periods heading into the third.
Logan Thompson stopped 30 shots for Vegas, allowing goals by Dominik Kubalik, Jonathan Toews, Dylan Strome and Alex DeBrincat. Kevin Lankinen made 29 saves for Chicago.
The game marked the return of two-time Stanley Cup champion Alec Martinez for Vegas. He suffered a severe facial laceration on Nov. 11. The 34-year-old missed 53 games.
Kubalik got credit for the first goal even though it was an inadvertent redirect off Vegas defenseman Shea Theodore’s stick that sent the puck into the net. Jake McCabe sent a pass to Kubalik, who blasted a shot from the blue line that deflected off Theodore’s blade and through Thompson’s legs.
Chicago extended the lead late in the second period when it capitalized on a turnover by defenseman Zach Whitecloud, who failed on a clearing attempt. DeBrincat found a perfect lane to the backdoor, where Toews was waiting for the tap in to make it 2-0.
With time draining in the second period, Caleb Jones fired a shot from between the top of the circles. When Thompson’s kick save delivered the puck to the left dot, Strome one-timed it perfectly to give Chicago a three-goal lead.
With playoff hopes on the line, Vegas came out of the locker room playing with a sense of urgency, scoring three goals within 2:52 early in the third period. Stephenson and Karlsson sent pucks into the net within a minute of each other, while Eichel added the equalizer shortly thereafter.
After Thompson made two spectacular saves on DeBrincat following Eichel’s goal, the third time was a charm for Chicago’s assistant captain. DeBrincat skated to the bottom of the right circle and found a sliver of space above Thompson’s blocker to put Chicago back on top.
The lead lasted for 47 seconds, as Pietrangelo’s ripper from the blue line found its way through traffic and into the net, once again tying the game and sending the crowd into a frenzy.
Blackhawks: Host Buffalo on Monday night.
Golden Knights: Play at Seattle on Wednesday night.
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