ANAHEIM - Ducks fans had their first look at the expansion Vegas Golden Knights this evening at Honda Center, and they couldn't have much liked what they saw.
Granted, it's only the preseason, but Vegas carried the play for most of the night in a 4-2 victory that dropped the Ducks to 1-3-0 thus far in the run-up to a regular season that starts October 5. Vegas, meanwhile, improved to 3-1-0 in the preseason. The two new Pacific Division rivals teams will face each other four times this season.
Vegas opened the scoring not long after an Ondrej Kase holding penalty in the first, cashing in on the power play when Teemu Pulkkinen fired a shot from the left wing circle that got through goalie John Gibson.
Vegas made it 2-0 with 2:20 left in the period on a Jake Bischoff slap shot from the point that got through a Keegan Kolesar screen and past Gibson.
Tomas Hyka gave the Knights a three-goal lead 5:41 into the middle frame, deflecting a point shot from Griffin Reinhart under the crossbar.
Anaheim got one back with 8:08 left in the period on a beautiful play by young winger Scott Sabourin, who spun 180 degrees and lifted a backhand home from just outside the crease.
But Vegas ultimately put the game away with just over five minutes left when Pierre-Edouard Bellemare caught up with a Stefan Matteau headman pass and scored on the partial breakaway.
Former Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury had a strong night with 26 saves on 28 Anaheim shots, though he did give up a goal with 22.9 seconds left when a bad angle shot by Giovanni Fiore got behind him and snuck over the stripe.
Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf saw his first action of the preseason in a lineup featuring a mix of veterans and prospects. Former Ducks defenseman Shea Theodore and Clayton Stoner did not make the trip to Anaheim with the Golden Knights.
The Ducks will likely have a different-looking lineup when they play the Coyotes in Tucson tomorrow night. They're back at home Thursday vs. San Jose.