Nicolas Roy Scores OT Goal as Golden Knights Top Canadiens in Game 4; Series Tied 2-2

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVJune 21, 2021

Vegas Golden Knights center Nicolas Roy (10) in the first period of Game 5 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup second-round playoff series Tuesday, June 8, 2021,in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
AP Photo/David Zalubowski

The Vegas Golden Knights evened their Stanley Cup semifinals series with the Montreal Canadiens at two games apiece following a 2-1 overtime win on Sunday at Bell Centre in Montreal.

Nicolas Roy waited until just 1:18 into the extra frame to give Vegas the victory.

NHL on NBC Sports @NHLonNBCSports

THE OVERTIME WINNER FOR THE GOLDEN KNIGHTS IN GAME 4. #VegasBorn | #StanleyCup pic.twitter.com/B0hvhziTLj

The teams played to a stalemate in the first period before Paul Byron broke the deadlock with 1:05 left in the second period.

NHL on NBC Sports @NHLonNBCSports

PAUL BYRON BREAKS THE ICE!#GoHabsGo strike first in Game 4. #StanleyCup pic.twitter.com/dsQCu4d3bp

Brayden McNabb leveled things up at the 10:37 mark of the third period.

NHL on NBC Sports @NHLonNBCSports

THE KNIGHTS ARE ON THE BOARD!<br><br>This game is TIED in the final 10 minutes. #VegasBorn | #StanleyCup pic.twitter.com/LsmeuvkSPO

With the result, the Golden Knights once again have home-ice advantage as the series heads back to Nevada.

Notable Performers

Robin Lehner, G, Golden Knights: 27 saves, .964 save percentage

Nicolas Roy, C, Golden Knights: one goal, two shots, three hits

Paul Byron, RW, Canadiens: one goal, one shot, one blocked shot, one hit

Lehner Answers the Call

Golden Knights coach Peter DeBoer opted to make a change between the pipes, swapping Marc-Andre Fleury out for Robin Lehner. 

Fleury made an incomprehensible gaffe in Game 3 to hand Josh Anderson a goal inside the final two minutes of regulation. Still, the move was a bit of a surprise since Lehner surrendered seven goals during his only appearance of the postseason.

DeBoer must've known something nobody else did because Lehner was excellent for Vegas.

The 29-year-old made a sprawling pad save on Eric Staal in the first period.

NHL on NBC Sports @NHLonNBCSports

WHAT A SAVE FROM ROBIN LEHNER!#VegasBorn | #StanleyCup pic.twitter.com/5JabdbyLo5

He also stonewalled Cole Caufield in the third period to keep it a one-goal game.

Ben Gotz @BenSGotz

Lehner stops Caufield again, this time on a breakaway.<br><br>He's doing all he can to keep the Knights' hopes alive.

Equally surprising was the collective performance of the Golden Knights' forward lines. This continued a trend that spanned the previous two games, with Alex Pietrangelo accounting for three of the team's last four goals.

Vegas had four shots in the first period, and things didn't get much better from there for a large chunk of the game.

John Wawrow @john_wawrow

I repeat. This one-man high style of the #GoldenKnights just isn't working against the #Canadiens.

Justin Emerson @J15Emerson

This is the worst the Golden Knights have looked in a playoff game in quite some time. Just 12 shots through two, and 20 minutes away from a 3-1 deficit. Canadiens lead 1-0 after two periods#VegasBorn

Martin Biron @martybiron43

This is NOT how you beat Carey Price. Lehner or Fleury can’t create space in the slot for chances. This is on the VGK forwards and nobody else. Oh and good job by MTL defending!!!! pic.twitter.com/yuSmJeOZbk

Roy's winner will ease those concerns for the time being.

Timely Breakaway, Stifling Defense Nearly the Winning Recipe for Habs

Nick Suzuki was credited with an assist for Byron's goal, but Shea Weber's involvement in the tally shouldn't go unnoticed. Weber's block on Jonathan Marchessault helped spark the Canadiens' quick breakaway.

That summed up a night when Montreal's defense was winning the day until McNabb turned the tide.

Heading into the third period, it looked like the Habs were on solid footing.

Ben Gotz @BenSGotz

Knights and Canadiens are back for the third.<br><br>Montreal is 6-0 this postseason when leading after two. Knights are 1-3 when trailing after two. Their one comeback win was Game 5 against Colorado.

Lehner's save on Caufield took on an added importance after Price surrendered the equalizer. The Canadiens are left to rue their missed opportunities after finishing with a 28-21 edge in shots.

Ariel Helwani @arielhelwani

Bizarre two games. Habs didn’t deserve to win game 3, but they did. Then they lose game 4, when it felt like they should have won. 2-2. All good. I believe in Carey.

Perhaps the Habs rebound with a victory in Game 5, nullifying any potential hangover from this defeat.

But they didn't want to hand a win over to a Golden Knights team that was clearly not at its best.

What's Next?

The puck drops Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET for Game 5 at T-Mobile Arena in Paradise, Nevada.