Marchessault gets 23rd goal, Vegas beats Canucks 4-1

Fans embrace excitement with Golden Knights first exhibition_43158531

Jonathan Marchessault scored his 23rd goal of the season and the Vegas Golden Knights beat the Vancouver Canucks 4-1 on Tuesday night.

Cody Eakin, Pierre-Edouard Bellemare and Tomas Tatar also scored for Vegas, which ranks second in the league with 245 goals.

Marc-Andre Fleury played just one period but was credited with the victory after making seven saves while improving to 27-11-3. The 14-year-veteran took over sole possession of 12th place on the NHL’s all-time wins list with 402.

Malcolm Subban took over in net at the start of the second period, making his first appearance since Feb. 2, when he lost in Minnesota. It was unclear why Fleury exited the game, although he took a shot from Brandon Sutter off the mask midway through the first. Subban made 22 saves.

Vancouver got a goal from Sutter, and Jacob Markstrom stopped 24 shots. Markstrom dropped to 18-26-6 after losing his fifth straight start. Markstrom has allowed 14 goals during his skid.

Vancouver fell to 6-17-1 against teams from the Pacific Division. It came into the game with the league’s fifth-best road power play at 21.9 percent but was 0 for 1 Tuesday.

Vegas picked up its 26th home win, one more victory than Vancouver has the entire season overall.

The Canucks have dropped seven straight since losing 21-year-old rookie Brock Boeser to a potential season-ending back injury. Boeser leads Vancouver with 29 goals and 55 points. The Canucks have scored just seven goals in the seven games since Boeser’s injury and were shut out in three consecutive games.

Marchessault brought a personal drought to an end, scoring four minutes into the game with his 23rd goal of the season to give Vegas a 1-0 lead.

Less than a minute later, Golden Knights defenseman Shea Theodore skated around Vancouver’s Alex Biega, and after Markstrom poked the puck into the air, Eakin batted it in to make it 2-0.

Bellemare beat Markstrom with his sixth of the year just before the end of the first period when Ryan Reaves was aggressive in digging out the puck behind the goal. He slipped it to Tomas Nosek, who fed Bellemare in front.

Tatar smacked home his own rebound, extending Vegas’ lead to 4-0 with 5:39 left in the second.

Sutter got his seventh goal of the season when he used a wrist shot to squeak the puck through Subban’s legs.

Red-hot San Jose, which is still within striking distance of the Golden Knights in the Pacific Division, hosted New Jersey on Tuesday, and hosts Vegas on Thursday in a critical showdown. The teams play twice during the final stretch of the regular season.

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