James Neal scored what proved to be the game-winner with 4:50 to go, and the Vegas Golden Knights recorded the final three goals to rally for a 5-3 victory over the host San Jose Sharks on Thursday night at the SAP Center.
Erik Haula, William Karlsson, Brayden McNabb and Jonathan Marchessault also scored for the Western Conference-leading Golden Knights, who improved to 13-1-1 against Pacific Division opponents.
David Perron, Colin Miller and Reilly Smith each had two assists, and Marc-Andre Fleury registered 35 saves for the Golden Knights, who were making the final stop of a six-game, 10-day road trip that covered 5,877 miles. Vegas finished the trip with a 4-2-0 record.
Joe Pavelski scored two goals, Brent Burns had three assists and Timo Meier added a goal and an assist for the Sharks, who lost for the second time in two meetings with Vegas. Martin Jones stopped 28 shots for San Jose, which dropped its second consecutive game.
San Jose dominated the first period, outshooting Vegas 16-3 and holding the Golden Knights without a shot in the first 12 minutes, but the Sharks could manage only a 1-1 tie after 20 minutes. Pavelski redirected a Brent Burns shot under Fleury’s glove just 4:40 into the game, but Haula put in a rebound through Jones’ pads to tie it at 14:00.
Karlsson gave Vegas a 2-1 lead just 37 seconds into the second period, tapping in a rebound of a Marchessault shot that came to a stop by the left post for his 29th goal of the season. Meier tied it when Fleury stopped a shot by Burns that caromed off Meier’s hip into the net at 11:47 of the middle period.
Pavelski put San Jose back ahead 3-2 with a power-play goal off a nice pass through the crease by Burns at 7:45 of the third period. However, McNabb tied it less than two minutes later with his third goal of the season, faking a slap shot that froze Burns and then going in and firing a wrist shot inside the left post.
Neal then scored the game-winner, finishing a two-on-one with Perron with a shot through Jones’ pads. Marchessault clinched it with an empty-net, power-play goal with 1:21 left, his 20th tally of the season.
—Field Level Media