LAS VEGAS – Nick Cousins scored in his Vegas debut and the Golden Knights beat the Edmonton Oilers 3-0 on Wednesday night in a matchup of the top teams in the Pacific Division.
Marc-Andre Fleury made 29 saves to earn his 61st career shutout, tied for 17th all-time with Turk Broda. The 16-year-veteran netminder is now 5-0-0 in his last five starts.
Cousins, acquired from Montreal at the NHL’s trade deadline Monday, became the 10th player in Golden Knights history to score a goal in his team debut. He knocked home a rebound on a power play for his sixth overall goal to give the Golden Knights a 2-0 lead midway through the third period.
Max Pacioretty and Shea Theodore also scored for Vegas, which won its seventh straight game.
With the victory, the Golden Knights increased their lead to four points ahead of the Oilers and Vancouver, each with 74 points. Just six points separate the top four squads in the Pacific as Calgary holds the top wild-card spot, two points better than Nashville.
Vegas improved to 11-3-2 under Peter DeBoer, who replaced fired Gerard Gallant on Jan. 15.
Edmonton is 18-13-3 on the road.
AVALANCHE 3, SABRES 2
DENVER (AP) — J.T. Compher broke a tie on a wrist shot with 8:06 remaining, Martin Kaut scored his first NHL goal and banged-up Colorado won its fourth straight.
Gabriel Landeskog also scored to help the Avalanche vault into second place in the Central Division.
Pavel Francouz was sharp in stopping 31 shots, including several sprawling saves in the closing minute after the Sabres pulled their goalie for an extra skater.
Zemgus Girgensons and Curtis Lazar scored for the Sabres, who have dropped five straight to Colorado. Wayne Simmonds made his Buffalo debut after being acquired from the New Jersey Devils.
KINGS 2, PENGUINS 1
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Blake Lizotte had a power-play goal and an assist, Cal Petersen made 36 saves and Los Angeles spoiled the debuts of Patrick Marleau and two more of Pittsburgh’s deadline acquisitions.
Lizotte posted his second career multi-point game and Trevor Lewis also scored as the last-place Kings hung on for their fourth win in seven games.
Tristan Jarry stopped 20 shots in Pittsburgh’s fourth consecutive loss. Bryan Rust scored with 13:18 to play, but the Penguins couldn’t get the equalizer past Petersen, who was strong in his seventh career victory.
Evgeni Malkin got the key assist on Rust’s goal while playing in his 900th career game, but the Penguins opened a road swing against California’s three teams with their fourth straight regulation loss. That matches the Pens’ total regulation defeats in their previous 22 games since Christmas.
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