Golden Knights claim Stanley Cup opener behind Nosek’s 2 goals

Updated May 28, 2018 - 10:56 pm

There’s something about Tomas Nosek and Game 1 of a championship series.

A year ago while playing for Grand Rapids in the American Hockey League, Nosek scored the winning goal with 13.9 seconds remaining in the opening game of the Calder Cup final.

But that doesn’t compare to what he managed Monday night.

Nosek tallied twice in the third period, including the go-ahead goal with 10:16 remaining, to help the Golden Knights rally for a 6-4 victory over the Washington Capitals at T-Mobile Arena in the first game of the Stanley Cup Final.

“This is another level, so it feels great,” Nosek said. “We tried to keep the things simple and go hard to the net. I think that’s what made us good in the third period. We have to keep doing that. Just keep things simple and be hard on the forecheck and create some chaos in there.”

Ryan Reaves notched his second goal of the postseason early in the third period as the Knights’ fourth line produced all three goals in the third period to overturn a 4-3 deficit.

Reilly Smith added a goal and an assist for the Knights, who are seeking to become the first team from the four major North American sports leagues to win a championship in its inaugural season — excluding the first year of a league’s existence — since the 1950 Cleveland Browns captured the NFL title.

Since the finals went to the best-of-seven format in 1939, the winner of Game 1 has gone on to capture the Stanley Cup 78.2 percent of the time (61 of 78 series). Boston was the last team to rally for a series victory after losing Game 1 in 2011.

Game 2 of the series is at 5 p.m. Wednesday at T-Mobile Arena.

“I’m sure (Washington coach Barry Trotz is) not too happy with that game, and I’m not overly happy with that game,” Knights coach Gerard Gallant said. “But the bottom line is we won the game, so we’re going to be a bit happier than they are. It was a bit of a sloppy game and two teams feeling each other out. I’m sure the next game is going to be a better game.”

Game 1 was a back-and-forth affair with a Stanley Cup Final-record four lead changes and a handful of costly defensive breakdowns by both teams.

Knights goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury accidentally kicked the puck into his own net 1:10 into the third period to put Washington ahead 4-3 after he made the initial save on Tom Wilson’s redirection.

The rugged Wilson was then involved in the first major flash point of the series when he drilled Jonathan Marchessault near center ice after the Knights forward released the puck.

The play fired up the announced crowd of 18,575 along with the home team.

“We were upset about it,” Gallant said. “It was a big hit, and Wilson’s a great hockey player. He’s a competitive guy and an old-school player. For me, it’s a late hit.

“We’re going to stand up for our players, and Marchessault is one of our stars and we don’t like to see that happen, but we reacted real well to it. We won the hockey game and came back and got two goals after that.”

Nosek, who has a modest three-game point streak, stationed himself at the back post and one-timed a perfect feed from defenseman Shea Theodore for a 5-4 Knights lead.

“I expected it right away, and that’s why I moved from the goalie’s eyes to back door because I knew he was going to pass it to me,” Nosek said.

In the final minute, Nosek slid on the ice to block a shot by Washington’s Alex Ovechkin. David Perron cleared the puck out of the Knights zone and Nosek scored into the empty net uncontested.

“I think that’s one of the biggest things about this team when something goes wrong, we bounce back quickly,” Reaves said. “I don’t know how many times the other team’s scored in the playoffs and the next shift or two we go out and score.”

The Capitals are making their first appearance in the finals since 1998 and were 8-2 on the road in the postseason before Monday.

Washington blanked Tampa Bay in the final two games of the Eastern Conference Final, but couldn’t hold leads of 2-1 and 4-3 against the Knights.

“We didn’t find our game tonight and we only lose by a goal, so that’s a good sign,” Washington forward Brett Connolly said. “I thought they were a little quicker than us. We were right there. Just got to bury it. We now what they’re all about now.”

The Knights controlled the first 13-plus minutes of an action-packed first period, holding Washington to one shot on goal.

Colin Miller’s slap shot from the point 7:15 into the first beat Braden Holtby clean to end the goaltender’s 166:42 scoreless streak that dated back to the second period of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Final.

But the Capitals struck for two goals 42 seconds apart to take a brief lead.

After good work along the wall by Washington’s third line, Connolly redirected Michal Kempny’s shot from the point to tie the score at 1.

The Capitals then took the lead with 4:37 remaining in the period when nobody for the Knights picked up Nicklas Backstrom, who beat Fleury with a backhand from in tight after T.J. Oshie lost control of the puck on a wraparound attempt.

“I didn’t expect it to be like that,” Smith said. “It was a little too wild and too wide open for what we wanted to play.”

William Karlsson answered for the Knights with 1:41 remaining when he grabbed the rebound after Smith’s shot went wide and stuffed it in for his seventh goal of the postseason.

Smith put the Knights up 3-2 at 3:21 of the second period, but Washington equalized about five minutes later when defenseman John Carlson jumped into the play and backhanded a pass from Oshie into an open net.

“Every win is important, especially the first one,” Nosek said. “But it’s just one. We have to keep focused on Game 2 and keep the home-ice advantage.”

More Golden Knights: Follow all of our Golden Knights coverage online at reviewjournal.com/GoldenKnights and @HockeyinVegas on Twitter.

Contact David Schoen at dschoen@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5203. Follow @DavidSchoenLVRJ on Twitter.

ad-high_impact_4
Golden Knights Videos
Golden Knights Fall to Devils 5-4 in OT
The Golden Knights surrendered a 3-0 lead as the New Jersey Devils comeback to win 5-4. David Schoen discusses the game.
Golden Knights center Paul Stastny on rejoining the lineup
Golden Knights center Paul Stastny on rejoining the lineup. David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Golden Knights center Paul Stastny discusses his injury
Golden Knights center Paul Stastny discusses his injury. David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Knights center Paul Stastny discusses his return to the ice
Knights center Paul Stastny discusses his return to the ice. David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal
Golden Knights Outshine Stars 4-2
The Golden Knights take down the Dallas Stars for their 8th win in their last 10 games. David Schoen discusses the victory.
Golden Knights prepare for road trip after 4-2 win over Stars
Vegas Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant and team players talk about carrying the momentum off their 4-2 win over the Dallas Stars into their 4-game road trip.
Golden Knights Suffer Heavy Loss To Kings - Golden Edge
Vegas Golden Knights lose to the Los Angeles Kings 5-1. Review-Journal sports writer Adam Hill goes over the Knights loss.
Golden Knights Head Coach Gerard Gallant On Loss To Kings
Golden Knights head coach Gerard Gallant talks to media about the Knights 5-1 loss to the Kings.
Golden Knights on their 4-3 victory over the Blackhawks
Players from the Vegas Golden Knights reflect on their third period surge and what else led them to a 4-3 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks.
Deryk Engelland at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas
The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas was a new experience for Golden Knights defenseman Deryk Engelland on Wednesday night. He said he was looking forward to spending time with family and going for a skate, as well as lighting the Christmas tree for fans.
Golden Edge: Ryan Reaves will face no further penalty for hit
The Golden Knights' Ryan Reaves will not be suspended following a hit on the Washington Capitals' Tom Wilson on Tuesday night. David Schoen and Adam Hill report from team practice at City National Arena.
Vegas Golden Knights Christmas Display
In the Las Vegas Valley, the chances of getting a white Christmas are slim. But this year, you can have a “Knight” Christmas. A Henderson resident has a Christmas lights display that is synchronized to the entrance music for the Golden Knights. GG Misa’s Knights light show is played every 30 minutes from 5 to 10 nightly. His light show consists of two songs: Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” and the entrance music, “Le Castle Vania,” from the movie “John Wick.” The display is located at 730 Bollons Island St. (Richard Brian/Las Vegas Reivew-Journal)
Golden Knights Avenge Final Loss, Top Caps 5-3 - Golden Edge
The Golden Knights rally to defeat the Washington Capitals in a rematch of last year's Stanley Cup Final. David Schoen and Adam Hill discuss the win and Ryan Reaves big hit on Tom Wilson.
Golden Knights, Schmidt on their emotional win over the Capitals
The Vegas Golden Knights talk about their emotional victory and playing physical against their 2018 Stanley Cup opponent, the Washington Capitals.
Golden Knights head coach happy with team's effort in win over Capitals
Vegas Golden Knights' head coach Gerard Gallant says he was happy with the team's effort in their 5-3 win against the Washington Capitals, the 2018 Stanley Cup winners.
Golden Knights License Plate Sales
Twenty-Five year Las Vegas resident, Bernard Turner, loves the Golden Knights and couldn’t wait to get the team-inspired specialty license plate on his new vehicle. Over 11,000 of the plates have been ordered since becoming available in October, according to the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles.
Golden Edge: Golden Knights Fall to Oilers 2-1
The Golden Knights come up short in Edmonton against the Oilers. David Schoen discusses the game.
Alex Tuch on Golden Knights' 2nd line
Alex Tuch talks about the chemistry between players on the Golden Knights' second line. (David Schone/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Golden Knights Win Five Games Straight, Beat Canucks 4-3
Golden Knights win five games straight after beating the Vancouver Canucks 4-3. Golden Knights beat reporter David Schoen goes over the Knights win.
Gerard Gallant on Marc-Andre Fleury
Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant talks about Marc-Andre Fleury af the Knights win in Vancouver. (David Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Reaves faceoffs 3
Reaves faceoffs 2
Reaves faceoffs 1
Gallant pre Vancouver
Golden Edge: Knights Have Strong Game Against Chicago
Golden Knights get strong win over the Chicago Blackhawks with an 8-3 victory. Golden Knights beat reporter David Schoen breaks down the knights fourth straight victory in a row.
Golden Edge Mailbag
Ben Gotz and Adam Hill answer all your burning Vegas Golden Knights questions and comments
Golden Edge: Golden Knights defeat Sharks 6-0 for 2nd straight shutout
William Karlsson scored the fastest goal in franchise history, and the Knights finally looked like the team that advanced to last year’s Stanley Cup Final with a 6-0 shellacking of first-place San Jose. Adam Hill and Dave Schoen report from T-Mobile Arena.
William Carrier Talks About the Knight's Win
Golden Knight's forward William Carrier scored his fourth goal of the season to help the team beat San Jose 6-0.
Marc-Andre Fleury Speaks After Shutout
Golden Knight's goalie Marc-Andre Fleury puts up his second shutout in back to back games. The Knights defeated the Sharks 6-0.
Golden Edge: Golden Knights Shut out Calgary
Golden Knights shutout the Calgary Flames 2-0 after coming home from their three game road trip. Adam Hill and David Schoen recap the Knights victory over the Flames at T-Mobile Arena.
Gerard Gallant says team's play is improving after win over Flames
Vegas Golden Knights head coach Gerard Gallant discusses the team's play and credits Marc-Andre Fleury's performance in their 2-0 shutout win against the Calgary Flames.
Golden Knights talk about their 2-0 win over the Flames
Vegas Golden Knights Nate Schmidt, Colin Miller, Marc-Andre Fleury and Alex Tuch discuss the team's 2-0 win over the Calgary Flames.
James Neal Talks About Being Back In Vegas
Former Golden Knights forward James Neal talks to media about playing his former team in Las Vegas.
Golden Edge: Pacioretty and Knights Come Away with Two
Max Pacioretty scored his second goal of the night in overtime to defeat the Arizona Coyotes as the team takes two points. They got 3 of 4 points overall on this road trip putting them at 21 for the season. Adam Hill reports from Arizona.
Coach Gallant Talks with Media After Win
The Golden Knights defeated the Arizona Coyotes in overtime with a Max Pacioretty game-winner. Coach Gerard Gallant speaks on the teams performance.
Max Pacioretty Talks After Scoring Game Winner
Golden Knights left wing Max Pacioretty scores in overtime to defeat the Coyotes.
Golden Edge: Knights In Flames After Loss To Calgary
Golden Knights fall to 7-2 to the Calgary Flames. Review-Journal sports writer Adam Hill and columnist Ed Graney go over the Knights loss before heading to Arizona to play against the Coyotes.
Golden Knights Forward Reilly Smith On 7-2 Loss
Golden Knights forward Reilly Smith talks to media about loss to the Calgary Flames.
Golden Knights Head Coach Gerard Gallant On Loss To Calgary
Golden Knights head coach Gerard Gallant talks to the media after their 7-2 loss against Calgary.
Golden Edge: Golden Knights Have Stellar Second Period Against Oilers
Golden Knights have stellar second period against the Edmonton Oilers on the road. Review-Journal sports writers Adam Hill and columnist Ed Graney break down the Knights 6-3 win over the Oilers.
Golden Knights Assistant Coach On Win In Edmonton
Gallant on Toronto loss
Gallant on Pacioretty
Gallant on how season has gone
Pacioretty on possible return
Gallant and Marchessault on Perron
Coach Gerard Gallant and Golden Knights Jonathan Marchessault comment on former Knights player David Perron (Dave Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Coach Gerard Gallant on former Knights player David Perron
Coach Gerard Gallant on former Knights player David Perron (Dave Schoen/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Marchessault on Perron
VGS themed games from AGS at G2E Global Gaming Expo
A Golden Knights-themed slot machine was on display Tuesday at the G2E Global Gaming Expo as AGS showed two products that came out of a 3-year contract with the Knights. A video roulette game featuring a Knights helmet and an enormous slot machine were on the floor along with Knights cheerleaders, the Drumbots and Chance, the Knights' mascot. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Golden Knights talk after practice
Marc-Andre Fleury, Max Pacioretty and Cody Eakin in the locker room on Wed. October 3, 2018.
Vegas Golden Knights show support at blood drive
Members of the Vegas Golden Knights NHL team showed up for a community blood drive on the first anniversary of the Las Vegas shooting, Oct. 1, 2018. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Nevada Task Force One Cheers Golden Knights
Nevada Task Force One Cheers Golden Knights
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like