The Minnesota Wild welcomed the Vegas Golden Knights in game three of their best of seven at the Excel Energy Center in St Paul, Minnesota. Marc Andre Fleury got the start again in net as head coach Pete Deboer was riding his hot goalie.
The Knights didn't get off to the start they wanted as less than four minutes into the game Mark Stone took a penalty and the Wild made them pay literally five seconds later when Ryan Hartman tipped a shot from Kirill Kaprizov past Fleury to make it 1-0 on the powerplay.
Less than a minute later Vegas had a chance to get one on the powerplay as Matt Dumba was called for holding but the Wild did a good job killing it off and six minutes later extended their lead to two when Joel Eriksson Ek got a shot by Fleury to make it 2-0.
Eriksson Ek thought he had his second of the game with seven minutes left in the first period when he found a juicy rebound and put it past Fleury but upon further review and a coaches challenge the goal was waived off due to the play being offside.
The Knights entered the first intermission down two but nine minutes into the second period they started a comeback after dominating the second period early and got within one when Mark Stone got a great pass from Chandler Stephenson and finally beat Talbot to make it 2-1.
That goal put the momentum in Vegas favor and with less than five minutes in the second period, Patrick Brown who took Tomas Nosek spot in the lineup went to the front of the net and managed to get a backhand shot into the back of the net to tie the game at two.
Reilly Smith made it three unanswered with two minutes left getting a rebound shot into the net to make it 3-2 and with 10 seconds left in the period Kaprizov was called for tripping giving Vegas a chance to add more at the beginning of the third period.
The second period was clearly dominated by the visitors with them outshooting 22-5 and they were 20 minutes away from taking a 2-1 series lead. The beginning of the third was a battle with the Wild starting to push back but Fleury was once again standing tall in net.
Despite all the pushback from the home side, William Karlsson would extend Vegas lead when he blocked a puck with his stick and went on a two-on-one and beat Talbot with a great wrist shot to make it 4-2 with two minutes left in regulation.
Minnesota pulled Talbot with less than two minutes to go in favor of an extra skater and the Wild continued to pressure and attack the Vegas net but Fleury once again stood on his head. The Wild thought they had one but a great save denied them.
With 59 seconds on the clock, Mark Stone would score into an empty net to make it 5-2 and pretty much seal the win for the Golden Knights. The final whistle would blow and Vegas officially had a 2-1 series lead.
After the win coach, Pete Deboer spoke about the changes he made to the lineup bringing in Patrick Brown for Tomas Nosek and Nick Holden for Nicholas Hague.
" I was really happy, both those guys played excellent and we don't win without those guys in the lineup and we spoke about it before the playoffs that we wouldn't be afraid to use our depth and both guys were great".
Game 4 is scheduled for Saturday night at the Excel Energy Center and the Knights will look to take a commanding 3-1 lead going back to Vegas.