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Golden Knights report: Alec Martinez, Max Pacioretty near return

Updated January 20, 2022 - 11:05 pm

Golden Knights vs. Canadiens

Knights win 4-3, OT

RJ’s three stars

3. Knights winger Jonathan Marchessault — Scored the tying goal on a power play in the third period and added an assist. He had seven shot attempts.

2. Knights center William Karlsson — Finished with a goal and an assist, and nearly won it in overtime on a breakaway. After a slow start, Karlsson might be heating up as the second half begins.

1. Knights defenseman Shea Theodore — Wasn’t going to be denied in overtime and scored the winner. He finished with three points and logged a team-high 26:33 of ice time.

Key play

Marchessault’s tying goal.

The Knights were looking for someone to make a play in the third period and help avoid another embarrassing home loss. Marchessault was the one who stepped up during a power play.

He took a cross-ice pass from Karlsson and fired a shot from the right circle that beat Canadiens goalie Sam Montembeault with 8:21 remaining in regulation. The goal, Marchessault’s team-best 19th, came seven seconds after Montreal’s Josh Anderson was sent to the penalty box and knotted the score 3-3.

The Knights finished 2-for-3 on the power play.

Key stat

Minus-8 — The second-period goal differential for the Knights during their homestand. The Knights were outscored 12-4 in the eight games after coming out even in the middle period against Montreal (1-1).

Martinez, Pacioretty close to returning

Left wing Max Pacioretty made a cameo during the morning skate Thursday at City National Arena after skating on his own on the other rink and is expected to travel with the Knights on their four-game trip.

The Knights play Monday at Washington in the first of back-to-back games.

Pacioretty hasn’t played since Dec. 28, and the team announced two days later he underwent wrist surgery and would be out indefinitely.

Defenseman Alec Martinez also is expected to be on the trip and could make his first appearance since Nov. 11, when he suffered a severe facial laceration and head injury after being kicked by the skate of Minnesota’s Brandon Duhaime.

Martinez exited NHL COVID protocol Tuesday and skated in a full contact jersey for the first time at the morning skate Thursday.

“They’re both in similar situations,” DeBoer said. “They both reintegrated with our group. Good first step. They’re both scheduled to travel with us on the trip and potentially be available at some point hopefully on that trip.”

Captain in protocol

Right wing Mark Stone missed Thursday’s game after entering COVID protocol.

Stone didn’t participate in practice Wednesday, and DeBoer termed it a maintenance day. Depending on when he entered protocol, Stone might be available for the start of the trip.

Stone can exit isolation and return to practices and games after five days with a negative test.

Defenseman Nic Hague, who has been out since Dec. 28 with a wrist injury, also is in COVID protocol, DeBoer confirmed. Assistant Ryan Craig was removed from COVID protocol Thursday, and assistant Steve Spott remained unavailable.

Marchessault moves on

Marchessault fell short in the Last Man In voting for the NHL All-Star Game at T-Mobile Arena. But he thinks Anaheim’s Troy Terry was a worthy selection by the fans for the Pacific Division team.

Terry has 22 goals and 36 points in 38 games for the upstart Ducks.

“I think that the players that were there, Terry was the guy that was having the best season,” said Marchessault, who leads the Knights with 19 goals.

Knights’ next 10

At Washington, 4 p.m. Monday

At Carolina, 4 p.m. Tuesday

At Florida, 4 p.m. Thursday

At Tampa Bay, 4 p.m. Jan. 29

Vs. Buffalo, 7 p.m. Feb. 1

At Edmonton, 6 p.m. Feb. 8

At Calgary, 6:30 p.m. Feb. 9

Vs. Colorado, 7 p.m. Feb. 16

Vs. Los Angeles, 7 p.m. Feb. 18

At San Jose, 5 p.m. Feb. 20

Contact David Schoen at dschoen@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5203. Follow @DavidSchoenLVRJ on Twitter.