Golden Knights end year in style

02 January 2018 05:47:43 GMTPlus11

The Toronto Maple Leafs were no match for the Vegas Golden Knights on Sunday as the hosts rolled to a 6-3 triumph at the T-Mobile Arena.

William Karlsson registered a hat-trick and Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, Erik Haula and Jonathan Marchessault were also on target for the Golden Knights, to offset a couple of goals from Auston Matthews and one from Patrick Marleau.

Winners of seven straight and 9-0-1 in their last 10 outings, Vegas leads the Pacific Division by three points over the Los Angeles Kings.

More relevant might be the ten-point advantage that the Golden Knights have over the fourth-placed Anaheim Ducks, and the three games in hand, when it comes to looking at the post-season.

Certainly the NHL is only closing in on the halfway point of the campaign, but at the moment it is hard to project any scenario where the expansion franchise does not make the play-offs in their opening year in existence.

Vegas are 1.001 to win the Pacific Division, with the Kings 10001.00 and the San Jose Sharks 51.00.

Tuesday the Golden Knights will look to complete a season sweep over the Nashville Predators when the Central Division challengers arrive in town.

Vegas took the game in Nashville 4-3 in a shootout in early December and will look to end their home stand on a high note before heading off to play the St. Louis Blues and Chicago Blackhawks on the road.

Second-placed LA has the day off on Monday before taking on the Oilers in Edmonton. It's a battle of two teams expected to be leading the Pacific Division this season and while the Kings have met expectations, the Oilers have been a colossal disappointment.

An astonishing 17 points behind the Golden Knights, the Oilers have lost three straight and were blanked 5-0 by the Winnipeg Jets on Sunday.

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