Theodores scores in OT, Vegas beats Canadiens, 4-3

Jan 20, 2022, 8:05 AM | Updated: 10:52 pm
Montreal Canadiens center Rem Pitlick (32) battles for the puck with Vegas Golden Knights center Mi...

Montreal Canadiens center Rem Pitlick (32) battles for the puck with Vegas Golden Knights center Michael Amadio (22) during the second period of an NHL hockey game Thursday, Jan. 20, 2022, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

(AP Photo/John Locher)

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Shea Theodore scored in overtime and the Vegas Golden Knights beat the Montreal Canadiens 4-3 Thursday night.

The Golden Knights salvaged the final game of an extended homestand after two road games were postponed due to COVID-19, closing out the stretch 3-3-2 before opening a rugged road trip Monday at Washington.

The Golden Knights outshot the Canadiens 53-27, with Montreal’s Sam Montembeault making 49 saves.

Chandler Stephenson, William Karlsson and Jonathan Marchessault also scored for the Golden Knights. Robin Lehner stopped 24 shots.

“We stuck with it and found a way,” Vegas coach Peter DeBoer said. “I liked that we didn’t panic. Our big guys made plays down the stretch.”

Michael Pezzetta, Tyler Toffoli and Mike Hoffman scored for the Canadiens.

Lehner made three huge stops early in the overtime, and Montembeault turned away Karlsson on a breakaway. Theodore grabbed a loose puck off the ensuing faceoff, skated to the slot and beat Montembeault, who it appears will be Montreal’s main goalie for an extended period.

Veteran goaltender Carey Price entered the NHL/NHLPA player assistance program for substance-use issues in October and has yet to practice with his teammates this season, while the Canadiens announced Thursday that Jake Allen is expected to miss eight weeks with a lower-body injury.

That leaves 25-year-old Montembeault between the pipes for an already banged-up Canadiens team that has only eight victories this season after arriving in Vegas after a win in Dallas and has yet to post back-to-back wins this season.

“What I like with him is the way he shows up every day, working on his game,” Montreal coach Dominque Ducharme said about Montembault. “You can see it’s paying off. He comes into the game with a plan. He’s getting more and more comfortable within that plan. It’s a great opportunity for him.”

Montembeault and the Canadiens have their hands full with five more games over a nine-day period before getting nine days off around the All-Star Break.

Meanwhile, an equally injury-riddled Vegas squad now hits the East coast for games in Washington, Carolina, Florida and Tampa Bay, an important four-game swing against teams with a combined 102-35-21 mark.

“We’re finding ways to win with seven or eight really key players out of the lineup,” Vegas coach Peter DeBoer said. “It was a big win tonight, and everyone helped and contributed to it.”

Stephenson, playing in his 300th career game, opened the scoring early in the first period when he one-timed a loose puck in the slot past Montembeault.

Montreal tied it later in the period when Pezzetta skated into the slot and fired the rebound from Artturi Lehkonen’s shot past Lehner glove side.

As tempers flared in the second period, Karlsson scored his sixth of the season during a power play, when he took linemate Marchessault’s pass, skated down the slot and snapped a backhand off Montembeault’s arm and into the net.

It was Montreal’s turn with an extra man, when former Golden Knight Nick Suzuki sent a pass from behind the net to Toffoli, who was at the doorstep to slip it by Lehner, making it 2-2 late in the second period. It was Toffoli’s second goal in two games after missing 11 games with an injury.

The Canadiens took their first lead of the night when Lehner appeared to briefly lose sight of the puck’s whereabouts and was late in reacting to Hoffman’s snapper from the left circle that gave Montreal a 3-2 lead early in the third period.

Marchessault reignited the announced crowd of 18,121 with a power-play goal to tie it midway through the period.

NOTES: Golden Knights D Zach Whitecloud was a late scratch with a back injury after warming up pregame. … Ducharme said new Canadiens GM Kent Hughes saw the players when they went into the dressing room pregame, but hadn’t had a chance to address the team or coaching staff yet other than introducing himself. … Vegas captain Mark Stone entered COVID protocol ahead of Thursday’s game. … Forward Max Pacioretty skated on his own after wrist surgery and is expected to travel with the Golden Knights when they leave Saturday. … DeBoer said Vegas defenseman Alec Martinez, who participated in the morning skate, is expected to be cleared to play next week.

UP NEXT

Canadiens: Visit Colorado on Saturday.

Golden Knights: Open a four-game road trip at Washington on Monday.

___

More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

After Supreme Court backs praying coach, no sweeping changes

Across the ideological spectrum, there were predictions of dramatic consequences when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of a public high school football coach’s right to pray on the field after games. Yet three months after the decision — and well into the football season — there’s no sign that large numbers of coaches […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Qatar confirms COVID-19 test requirements for World Cup fans

GENEVA (AP) — Fans going to the World Cup in Qatar must show a negative COVID-19 test when they arrive as part of the host nation’s rules to combat COVID-19, organizers said Thursday. All visitors aged 18 and over must also download a government-run phone application tracking people’s movements and health status, called Ehteraz. “A […]
1 day ago
Puerto Rico players leave the court following their loss to Canada in their quarterfinal game at th...
Associated Press

Canada into women’s World Cup semis for 1st time since 1986

SYDNEY (AP) — No one on Canada’s roster was born the last time the team won a medal at the women’s World Cup. Now the Canadians are a win away from securing one for the first time since 1986, when they captured the bronze. Kia Nurse scored 17 points to lead a balanced Canada team […]
1 day ago
North Carolina State's Devin Leary (13) prepares to throw the ball during the first half of an NCAA...
Associated Press

Week 5 preview: No. 10 NC State and No. 5 Clemson take stage

What’s being called the biggest game in North Carolina State history and Florida State’s first game in four years as an AP Top 25 member have put the Atlantic Coast Conference in the national spotlight Saturday. Whether the games are played as scheduled depends on the path Hurricane Ian takes. No. 10 NC State is […]
1 day ago
FILE - Golden State Warriors forward Andre Iguodala handles the ball during the second half of an N...
Associated Press

Warriors-Wizards games in Japan to woo NBA fans, sponsors

TOKYO (AP) — Japanese basketball fans will get to see NBA stars up close when the reigning league-champion Golden State Warriors take on the Washington Wizards in two preseason games. Not surprisingly, Stephen Curry and Japanese-born Rui Hachimura will be the star attractions for each team. And as clearly as the logo of Japanese online […]
1 day ago
New York Yankees' Aaron Judge celebrates his 61st home run of the season, a two-run shot against th...
Associated Press

Maris Jr: Bonds, McGwire illegitimate, Judge to be HR king

TORONTO (AP) — Roger Maris Jr. considers the home run feats of Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa to be illegitimate and says Aaron Judge should be recognized as the holder of the big league season standard if the New York Yankees slugger hits No. 62. “He should be revered for being the actual […]
1 day ago
Theodores scores in OT, Vegas beats Canadiens, 4-3