Las Vegas evens Stanley Cup series with Winnipeg

Jamie Nye: Winnipeg Jets now the favourite?

Steven Stamkos trying to win his first cup, same for Alexander Ovechkin or the Cinderella stories of the Winnipeg Jets or Vegas Golden Knights. "It's a long series".

The Golden Knights used the same recipe that the Predators used to win in Bell MTS Place: Score early, build a 2-0 lead through two periods and hold off the high-scoring Jets offense the rest of the way. Now with Vegas and Winnipeg in the Conference Final (first for each franchise) we get to see this odd yet always heated matchup all over again, this time on ice.

"There's a 10-minute block [of video] there that we're not going to like very much tomorrow", Maurice said. Although St. Louis had moved on by the time Marchessault suited up for the Lightning, he learned a great deal as one of the Black Aces (replacement players) in the Lightning's run to the 2015 Stanley Cup final against the Chicago Blackhawks.

Vegas forward Tomas Tatar, who was a healthy scratch in Game 1, scored the first goal of the game, while Jonathan Marchessault added a pair of goals himself to take home-ice advantage from Winnipeg in the series.

We knew Winnipeg would be decent this season but no one was predicting the Jets to be the second-best team in the National Hockey League and into the conference final and you know the story of the first year Golden Knights.

While Marchessault and goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury were the stars on Monday for Vegas, the Golden Knights' success was rooted in a relentless forecheck in the late first and third periods that caused the Jets to turn over the puck. Perhaps Gallant considered that Tatar already had three career goals against the Jets and the decision led to the first goal of the playoffs for Tatar, in only his fifth game. Marchessault tucked the puck five-hole with his backhand to build a 2-0 lead.

"We'll be ready to bounce back", Jets centre Paul Stastny said.

They were opportunistic and took advantage of their opponents' mistakes. It doesn't matter what line it is.

Fleury would not surrender a goal until midway through the final period when Kyle Connor, parked at the side of net, rifled a shot that somehow found its way between the netminder's pads, sparking a roar from the Winnipeg crowd.

"'March' was real good tonight, he scored two big goals, but I thought all our team did their jobs tonight", said Vegas Coach Gerard Gallant.

The Golden Knights' only loss at T-Mobile Arena (4-1) this spring was in double overtime to the San Jose Sharks. They're going to feed off that.

Centre Paul Stastny said even a one-goal deficit is a hard hole to emerge from in the heat of spring hockey. But we've played in hostile environments.

"When you start letting it snowball, that's when it gets more challenging".

"You come on the road and the challenge is to get a split, and we have an opportunity to do that tonight".

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