Stephenson scores twice, Vegas tops Kings 4-3

·2 min read

LAS VEGAS — Chandler Stephenson scored twice, including the winner early in the third period, and the Vegas Golden Knights beat the Los Angeles Kings 4-3 on Sunday.

The Golden Knights improved to 7-1-1 and moved into a first-place tie with St. Louis and Colorado in the West Division. The Blues and Avalanche were scheduled to play today but were postponed with Colorado shut down due to COVID-19 protocols.

Reilly Smith and Zach Whitecloud also scored for Vegas. Robin Lehner overcame a wild first period and made 29 saves, including all 11 he faced on four penalty kills.

Anze Kopitar, Adrian Kempe and Jaret Anderson-Dolan scored for Los Angeles, and Calvin Petersen made 29 saves.

Los Angeles scored on its first two shots of the game — the first time that’s happened to Vegas since it entered the league in 2017. Kopitar gave Los Angeles an early lead when he took a cross-ice pass from Alex Iafallo and beat Lehner far side just 36 seconds in.

Later it was Kempe giving the Kings a 2-1 lead with a wrist shot that sneaked between Lehner’s elbow and the post a little more than a minute after Smith tied it.

Whitecloud scored the third goal of his career — his first in the regular season — when he skated down the backside, gathered Cody Glass’ pass through traffic and sniped Petersen under his blocker.

Vegas capped the first period scoring when captain Mark Stone dished a no-look pass off the boards between two Kings defenders to Stephenson, who streaked into the zone and fired a wrist shot over Petersen’s glove.

Nine Knights had a point in the first period.

Anderson-Dolan scored the first goal of his NHL career midway through the second period when he fired a one-timer off Lehner’s left shoulder.

Stephenson gave Vegas its first lead of the game early in the third period with second goal of the game, the Golden Knights’ fifth power-play goal of the season. Taking a pass from Alex Tuch in the neutral zone, Stephenson raced into the zone and had his pass from the side of the goal carom off Petersen’s stick and through his legs to make it 4-3.

WHAT’S NEXT?

Los Angeles opens a four-game homestand with the first of two against San Jose on Tuesday.

Vegas opens a two-game home series against Anaheim on Tuesday.

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W.G. Ramirez, The Associated Press