EditorsNote: Minor fixes throughout, including adding William to Karlsson on second reference to differentiate from Erik Karlsson
Reilly Smith scored two goals, Mark Stone had a goal and an assist, and Marc-Andre Fleury tied an NHL record with his 10th season-opening win as the Vegas Golden Knights skated to a 4-1 victory over the San Jose Sharks on Wednesday night in Las Vegas.
Cody Glass scored a goal in his NHL debut, and William Karlsson added two assists for Vegas, which improved to 6-1-2 in regular-season games against the Sharks, including 4-1-0 at T-Mobile Arena. The contest was a rematch of a 2018-19 first-round Western Conference playoff series won by San Jose in seven games.
Fleury, playing in his 799th NHL game, finished with 21 saves to tie Curtis Joseph and Martin Brodeur for wins in a season opener. It was also his 440th career victory, which ranks eighth in NHL history.
Marcus Sorensen scored a goal, and Martin Jones finished with 31 saves for San Jose. The Sharks played without suspended left winger Evander Kane and also two-time Norris Award-winning defenseman Erik Karlsson, who was scratched about an hour before the game for what the team said was a personal matter.
Vegas jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first 5:21 on goals by Stone and Smith.
Stone’s tally came on a power play at 3:46 when he intercepted a pass and beat Jones with a wrist shot from the left side of the goal.
Smith followed less than two minutes later when defenseman Dalton Prout lost the puck to William Karlsson behind the goal. Karlsson then fed Smith alone in front of the net, where he tapped it past Jones’ stick side.
San Jose cut the deficit to 2-1 at 12:14 of the first period. Sorensen beat Fleury on his glove side with a wrist shot from the left circle off a nice feed by Logan Couture.
The 20-year-old Glass, the first pick in Vegas history in 2017, made it 3-1 at 2:12 of the second period. He one-timed a cross-ice pass from Max Pacioretty from the left side of the crease.
San Jose appeared to cut it to 3-2 later in the period when Sorensen deflected Brenden Dillon’s shot from the left point past Fleury. However, the goal was disallowed when it was ruled that Sorensen’s stick was above the crossbar when he made contact.
Smith scored a short-handed goal at 4:01 of the third period to make it 4-1 off William Karlsson’s second assist of the night.
—Field Level Media