LAS VEGAS (AP) Beginning with Tyler Seguin on a breakaway, the shots came in waves at Vegas goalie Adin Hill.

He stopped Seguin at point blank, saved Evgenii Dadonov's rebound and then stopped Seguin again.

This was the Hill of last year's Stanley Cup championship run, and because of him the Golden Knights kept alive their hopes of repeating by beating the Dallas Stars 2-0 on Friday night to force a Game 7.

“You need to make big saves at big times in big games,” Hill said. “That's how you win playoff games. I think our team learned that last year, and any team that's won, their goalies had to catch fire at times.”

The deciding game in the first-round series is Sunday in Dallas.

Hill stopped 23 shots for first shutout since having two in three games in early November. Noah Hanifin broke a scoreless tie at 9:54 of the third period and Mark Stone scored an empty-netter from 176 feet away with 18.9 seconds left to seal the victory.

This was the second winning goal this series for Hanifin, who was a trade-deadline acquisition from Calgary.

“Ever since I got traded here, I was super excited about the opportunity coming to a team with guys that have won,” Hanifin said. “It's a great culture here and I'm fortunate to be a part of it. I feel good about my game and I'm trying to contribute whichever way I can.”

This was a classic goalie duel, with Hill looking like the player who went 11-4 with a .932 save percentage and 2.17 goals goals allowed per game in last year's playoffs. But Hill had been up and down late in this season, and Logan Thompson got the starting job in the series' first four games.

The Knights turned to Hill for Game 5 in their 3-2 loss and then again for this one.

“At the end of the year, Adin was feeling pretty good about this game,” Knights coach Bruce Cassidy said. “You could see it in practice. It was just pucks were finding their way in. ... He should have confidence. He just pitched a shutout and made some really high-end saves.”

On the other side, Jake Oettinger made 28 saves and entered the game without giving up a goal in this series in the third period or overtime. Hanifin's goal ended Oettinger's streak at 60 saves.

“I would've like to have shut it down tonight, but now that we're in this position, that's why we played so well during the regular season to get Game 7 at home if it comes to that,” Oettinger said. “The ball's in our court. We're on home ice, and now it's on us to take care of business.”

There are numbers that favor either side going into Game 7.

Vegas took a 2-0 lead in this series, and the Knights are 4-0 when holding such an advantage. The Stars have never overcome such a deficit in the nine previous tries since moving to Dallas. NHL teams overall are 351-55 when given that early lead.

But no team has been able to solve Stars coach Pete DeBoer in a seventh game. He is 7-0.

“There's nothing better than Game 7s,” DeBoer said. “That's what you grew up dreaming about playing and the second-best thing is coaching in them.”

This game had electricity from the beginning, both teams missing major scoring opportunities with the tension building as the game progressed. The Golden Knights added some star touches with recording artist Shania Twain cranking the horn before the game and James Holzhauer of Jeopardy fame doing it before the third.

The Golden Knights, as expected given the circumstances, came out flying, living in the Stars' offensive zone early on. Dallas didn't get its first shot on goal until 7:45 into the game, but the Knights failed to cash in on several chances, including a point-blank opportunity by Nicolas Roy and a shot from Keegan Kolesar that went off the post to keep the game scoreless in the first period.

The game remained that way through the second period, but it wasn't for a lack of action. In addition to Hill's three spectacular saves during that one sequence, he later received an assist from Stone, who cleared the puck from the goal line. Logan Stankoven missed an open net for the Stars, and Vegas' Jonathan Marchessault had a shot from the left circle that William Karlsson tipped that caused the crowd to believe the puck went into the net.

Hanifin finally broke through, with his unassisted wrister from the right circle.


This story has been corrected to show that Evgenii Dadonov's rebound was blocked in a flurry of shots, not Joe Pavelski's.



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