Knights fall to Jets 5-4 in OT

Golden Knights

Winnipeg Jets center Kristian Reichel (87) prepares to take a shot on goal while center Adam Lowry (17) watches the puck and Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Laurent Brossoit (39), defenseman Brayden McNabb (3) and defenseman Dylan Coghlan, third from right, guard the net during the first period of an NHL hockey game Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022 in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Ellen Schmidt)

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Kyle Connor scored in overtime and the Winnipeg Jets overcame a first-period, two-goal deficit to hold off the Vegas Golden Knights 5-4 Sunday in their return from a two-week hiatus.

Mattias Janmark scored twice for Vegas in the third period, including a tying goal with 8.1 seconds left, but Winnipeg’s Connor Hellebuyck improved to 4-1-1 career against the Golden Knights by stopping 42 shots.

The Jets hadn’t played since beating St. Louis 4-2 at home Dec. 19 due to COVID-19 outbreaks. They hadn’t been on the road since Dec. 10, when they lost 4-3 in a shootout at Vancouver.

“We knew there was probably going to be some rust, there was probably going to be some hiccups, and we talked about it,” Winnipeg interim coach Dave Lowry said. “We felt that we did the drills right in practice to prepare us, but once you get into game action and play a team that’s already played a couple of games, you are going to be on your heels.”

Jansen Harkins, Kristian Reichel, Andrew Copp and Paul Stastny also scored for the Jets.

Michael Amadio and Evgenii Dadonov also had goals for Vegas, and Laurent Brossoit made 32 saves.

Connor, who leads the Jets in scoring on the road with 20 points (10 goals, 10 assists) in 14 games, raced into Vegas’ zone and past all three Golden Knights while creating a 2-on-1 rush before firing a wrist shot past Brossoit for the winner.

“Just tried to build speed … and they kind of got tied up in the neutral zone,” said Connor, whose last two goals in Vegas were overtime winners. “Came in and had 2-on-1 and the D-man kind of gave me a lot of space there and I wasn’t going to pass up that shot.”

Vegas opened the scoring when Zach Whitecloud’s shot from the high slot was blocked toward the near side, where Amadio was in perfect position to jump on the puck and fire it into an open net.

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