LAS VEGAS — The Golden Knights have one game left to win the Pacific Division, and Michael Amadio is a key reason why they’re in that position.
He had two goals and an assist in a 4-1 victory over the Seattle Kraken on Tuesday night.
Edmonton’s 2-1 overtime victory over Colorado on Tuesday prevented the Knights from clinching the Pacific.
Reilly Smith had a three-point game, scoring on the rebound off a shot by linemate Amadio. Smith also picked up assists on Amadio’s goals. Jonathan Marchessault scored on a 5-on-3 power play and William Karlsson had two assists.
Laurent Brossoit made 20 saves and ran his season record to 6-0-3, helped by a defense that allowed four shots on goal in the third period.
“If you can really put your thumb down on teams in the third period, it bodes really well for the playoffs because there’s no quit in the playoffs,” Knights coach Bruce Cassidy said. “They’re going to keep coming and coming. In the regular season, sometimes teams will take the foot off the gas because they’ve got another game coming up. So you have to get into those habits of playing a full 60 (minutes).”
Yanni Gourde scored for the Kraken, who played the second game of a back to back.
“We had a good burst probably the last 15, 16 minutes of the first period, but just couldn’t find any energy in the second and third,” Seattle coach Dave Hakstol said. “They played well. They were on top of us.”
The Kraken got hit with two minor penalties 3:05 into the third period; Will Borgen was assessed an interference penalty and Jesper Froden was called for hooking.
The Knights took advantage when Marchessault scored 18 seconds later for a 4-1 lead.
“I didn’t like going down 5-on-3 in that situation,” Hakstol said. “They were probably marginal (calls). To go down 5-on-3, I thought that was a tough spot. That didn’t dictate the outcome of the game in any way, shape or form.”
The Knights, 4-0-3 in their last seven games, lead the Western Conference with 109 points. They will face the Kraken again Thursday night in Seattle in the regular-season finale for both teams. A win gives them the division title, while a loss, combined with an Oilers’ victory over San Jose would give Edmonton the top spot in the division. Edmonton, which has 107 points, owns the tiebreaker.
“We learned a lot about how (the Kraken) play, and we’re going to try to do the same thing when we go there,” Amadio said. “But it’s a tight race, so all the points matter.”
Seattle had its five-game winning streak — all against teams out of the playoff picture — halted. The Kraken, who have 100 points and have secured a postseason berth, are two points behind Los Angeles in the race for the Pacific’s third-place playoff spot.
Amadio had his second career two-goal game. His other occurred Feb. 17, 2018, against Buffalo when he played for the Kings. It was his second three-point game of this season.
“He’s been awesome all year,” Smith said. “I’m a big advocate of how well he plays and very fortunate to play with a guy like that. He’s got some much poise … and he makes a lot of smart plays. So I think he’s probably deserving of more ice time and more opportunity.”
Smith’s three points were a personal best this season. He is one goal shy of 200 for his career.
Seattle’s Jared McCann had his three-game goal streak halted, as well as his five-game point streak.