National Hockey League
Vegas 4, Anaheim 2
When: 10:30 PM ET, Wednesday, November 22, 2017
Where: Honda Center, Anaheim, California
Referees: Trevor Hanson, Kevin Pollock
Linesmen: Steve Barton, Steve Miller
Attendance: 17174

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- The Vegas Golden Knights are a first-place team going into Thanksgiving. They landed there by doing what other teams have failed to of late: penetrating the armor of Ducks goaltender John Gibson.

James Neal scored the decisive goal, and Maxime Lagace registered 17 saves as the Golden Knights defeated the Ducks 4-2 on Wednesday.

For the third straight start, Gibson faced more than 40 shots. He wound up stopping 45 of 49 Vegas shots. Gibson won his prior two starts on a combined 90 saves, with four goals allowed.

"They kind of took it to us from the beginning," Anaheim defenseman Josh Manson said. "They played hard. They skated. Too many times of late, we've been relying on our goaltender. We were fortunate to win some of those games. A game like this was due."

Vegas (13-6-1) notched its third consecutive win to match the NHL record for most victories by a team through the first 20 games of its inaugural season.

Jonathan Marchessault paced the Golden Knights with a goal and two assists.

Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle was curt in his explanation of his team's performance.

"Again, you can't rely on the guy in the net to stand on his head for you," he said. "The score was 4-2, but it could have been 10-2. We have a lot of work ahead of us. We know and we believe that this team can play a lot better hockey than we did tonight."

Neal scored his 11th of the year and the third consecutive Las Vegas goal after Anaheim started the game up 2-0. It came at 11:18 of the third period. He chipped the puck behind a fallen Gibson from directly in front of the net.

Manson opened the scoring for Anaheim at 9:16 of the first period with his third goal. He rushed the puck through center and fanned on a wrist shot inside the Vegas blue line. The puck slid past the skates of Vegas defender Colin Miller. Manson picked it up, deked right and shot low through Lagace's legs. Brandon Montour assisted.

The Ducks made it 2-0 at 5:59 of the second period with Derek Grant getting his fifth of the season on the power play. Cam Fowler threw a backhand pass to Hampus Lindholm along the blue line. Lindholm drifted in and fired a wrist shot. Grant redirected the puck past Lagace from directly in front of the netminder.

The Golden Knights got the game to 2-1 on Marchessault's power-play goal at 19:07 of the middle period. Marchessault put a one-timer along the ice through Gibson's legs from the left faceoff dot for his sixth goal. The pass came from David Perron at the opposite point. Shea Theodore drew the secondary assist while playing against his former team.

"I know we have it in this room, I know we believed in ourselves the entire game," Theodore said. "We had a strong first two periods. We didn't score on all our chances, but we stuck to it. I felt like we finished the game strong. ...

"I felt great out there tonight. First couple shifts were a little nerve-wracking playing an old team. I'm glad to be wearing a Golden Knights jersey, and it was a great all-around night."

Vegas tied the game 2-2 at 2:21 of the third period on Miller's third goal of the season. Neal controlled a puck that came from behind the Ducks' net. Neal passed to Perron, who backhanded the puck to the point for Miller. Miller's wrist shot from the point went between Gibson's arm and body.

The Golden Knights added a final tally at 18 minutes on Karlsson's 10th of the season. His previous high was nine goals.

"It's a big win tonight," Vegas coach Gerard Gallant said. "I thought our team played excellent all night long, and somebody said we are in first place. Is that official? Perfect."

NOTES: The Ducks scratched D Korbinian Holzer, D Francois Beauchemin and D Jaycob Megna. ... The Golden Knights scratched D Jon Merrill and LW Tomas Nosek. ... Each team has six players on injured reserve. ... Vegas G Marc-Andre Fleury (concussion) observed practice from ice level this week but did not participate. ... The Golden Knights' two leading scorers, LW David Perron and C William Karlsson, formerly played for Anaheim. ... The Ducks honored C Antoine Vermette for playing his 1,000th NHL game last Wednesday.
Top Game Performances
Vegas   Anaheim
Jonathan Marchessault 3 Points Derek Grant 1
Jonathan Marchessault 1 Goals Derek Grant 1
Jonathan Marchessault 2 Assists Cam Fowler 1
Jonathan Marchessault 1 Power Play Goals Derek Grant 1
N/A Short Handed Goals N/A
Maxime Lagace .895 Save Percentage John Gibson .918
Maxime Lagace 17 Saves John Gibson 45
Team Stats Summary
Team Shots Goals Power Play Penalty Kill Penalty Mins Face Offs Won
Vegas 49 4 1-3 3-4 13 28
Anaheim 19 2 1-4 2-3 11 43
Upcoming Games
  • Anaheim will play their next game at home against Winnipeg. The Ducks have a W/L % of .400 after a win and .545 after a loss.
  • Vegas will play their next game at home against San Jose. The Golden Knights have a W/L % of .667 after a win and .625 after a loss.