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Pacioretty, Stone score to give Vegas 2-1 win over Sharks

Max Pacioretty and Mark Stone each had a goal and an assist to help the Vegas Golden Knights beat the San Jose Sharks 2-1 on Monday night.

Marc-Andre Fleury, making his 16th start in 17 games, finished with 23 saves to improve to 14-5-0 this season. Fleury earned his 481st career win, inching closer to Ed Belfour, who ranks fourth with 484.

Pacioretty scored in the first period and delivered a perfect backhand pass early in the third to Stone, who one-timed a wrist shot at 1:02 to make it 2-0. It ended up being Stone's sixth game-winning goal.

Vegas Golden Knights left wing Max Pacioretty (67) skates around San Jose Sharks right wing Kevin Labanc (62) during the third period of an NHL hockey game Monday, March 15, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP PhotoJohn Locher)

Timo Meier scored late for San Jose, and Devan Dubnyk stopped 34 shots.

The Golden Knights are 12-1-3 in 16 regular-season meetings with San Jose.

The Sharks dominated the first period, Vegas the second.

Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury (29) blocks a shot by San Jose Sharks left wing Evander Kane (9) during the second period of an NHL hockey game Monday, March 15, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP PhotoJohn Locher)

From the opening faceoff, the Golden Knights struggled to enter San Jose’s zone with possession, as the Sharks did a good job of challenging Vegas’ skaters at the blue line. And when the Knights were able to dump in, they couldn’t catch the Sharks, who were faster to the puck and much quicker in starting their breakout.

But the Golden Knights got a power play when Evander Kane was called for tripping a little more than eight minutes in. Eight seconds later Pacioretty lasered a wrist shot past Dubnyk from his familiar spot atop the right circle.

Vegas looked like a different team in the second, skating quicker, creating scoring chances and peppering Dubnyk with 16 shots — the second-most for the Golden Knights in a period this season.

Vegas Golden Knights center Jonathan Marchessault (81) skates around San Jose Sharks defenseman Nikolai Knyzhov (71) during the second period of an NHL hockey game Monday, March 15, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP PhotoJohn Locher)

Overall shot attempts were dominated by Vegas 31-9, including scoring chances (17-6) and high-danger chances (7-3).

Meier cut the lead in half with a little more than five minutes left with his sixth of the season.

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San Jose Sharks center Ryan Donato (16) attempts a shot on Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury (29) during the first period of an NHL hockey game Monday, March 15, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP PhotoJohn Locher)

The teams play again Wednesday night.

More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

San Jose Sharks goaltender Devan Dubnyk (40) blocks a shot by the Vegas Golden Knights during the first period of an NHL hockey game Monday, March 15, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP PhotoJohn Locher)

Vegas Golden Knights center Jonathan Marchessault (81) and San Jose Sharks left wing Evander Kane (9) vie for the puck during the third period of an NHL hockey game Monday, March 15, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP PhotoJohn Locher)

Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury (29) knocks the puck away from San Jose Sharks left wing Evander Kane (9) during the third period of an NHL hockey game Monday, March 15, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP PhotoJohn Locher)