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Los Angeles
Kings
Colorado
Avalanche

42 SOG
23 SOG
1st2nd3rdT
LAK
COL
game recap

Kings open preseason with comeback win

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:50 AM

Rick Sadowski  -  NHL.com Correspondent

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Kings open preseason with comeback win
Los Angeles Kings 4, Colorado Avalanche 2
DENVER – Justin Williams figures he's paid more than his fair share of dues and deserves some good fortune from the hockey gods for a change.

A former two-time 30-goal scorer with the Carolina Hurricanes, the 29-year-old right wing has been plagued by injuries the past three seasons, averaging just 43 games in that time.

If Williams can remain healthy, he could play a valuable role for the Los Angeles Kings, who opened their preseason schedule Wednesday night with a 4-2 come-from-behind win against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center.

"This is big for us," said Williams, who set up Brad Richardson with the go-ahead goal at 4:32 of the third period and scored on a 2-on-1 down low at 7:29 to give the Kings a two-goal cushion. "We didn't dress a lot of veterans and I thought we came prepared. Winning against Colorado with a lot of veterans in the lineup bodes well for us."

Williams was credited with the insurance goal as he was driving to the net. Andrew Campbell's shot hit him and caromed into the net off Avalanche defenseman Kyle Quincey while each team was shy a skater.

Maybe his fortunes are improving already.

"I've chalked up the injuries to bad luck," said Williams, who broke his leg last season when he had 10 goals and 19 assists in 49 games. "I feel I'm stronger, I'm faster and I'm prepared as I could be not to have any more accidents this year. It's an important year for me in my hockey career. I plan on staying healthy and contributing to this team as much as I can.

"(Thirty goals) shouldn't be out of my reach now. I know I've got the talent. I'm very confident in my abilities and hopefully it'll be a good year for me."
Down 2-0 in the second period, the Kings tied the game on a power-play goal by Michal Handzus at 7:32 and a goal by John Zeiler at 12:25.

"We started a little slow, but we got a timely power-play goal and we got stronger as the game went on," Williams said. "Usually that doesn't happen in Colorado with the (altitude)."

Williams logged 20:25 of ice time while skating on a line with Scott Parse and Jarret Stoll, who had two assists.

Handzus scored against Avalanche starting goalie Craig Anderson, who faced 18 shots before giving way to John Grahame at the 11:27 mark.

Zeiler was in front when he knocked the puck by Grahame, who is the son of former NHL goalie Ron Grahame and current Avalanche executive Charlotte Grahame.
The Avalanche took a 2-0 lead on a goal by Philippe Dupuis during a four-on-four skating situation at 2:28 of the first period and one by Quincey at 5:06 of the second. Quincey, who assisted on Dupuis' goal, beat screened Kings goalie Jonathan Bernier (21 saves) with a shot from the left point.

The Kings went on six consecutive power plays, including a two-man advantage that lasted 41 seconds in the first period, but they couldn't capitalize.

Avalanche captain Adam Foote was assessed three first-period penalties, which included a double minor at 18:06 for elbowing and roughing Zeiler.

There is some history involving the two players.

 Zeiler, who spent all last season with Manchester in the AHL, was given a three-game suspension for boarding Foote in a Nov. 22, 2008 game. Zeiler expressed remorse at the time for the hit, which caused Foote to miss nine games with neck and knee injuries.

"There's obviously some history there," Avalanche coach Joe Sacco said. "When you're a competitive guy like Footie, sometimes things happen like that. The time to do it, I guess, would be in the preseason. He wouldn't do that in the regular season."

The Avalanche killed off a two-minute, two-man disadvantage late in the second period with Paul Stastny (tripping) and Chris Stewart (roughing) sitting side-by-side in the penalty box.

Colorado was penalized 14 times totaling 34 minutes and wound up killing off nine of 10 Kings power plays.

"It certainly hurt the flow of the game," Sacco said. "We really couldn't find a groove, especially in the first period. A lot of guys sat on the bench for a long time. It just kind of hurts the flow and the consistency in the game and getting your lines out there.

"The penalty killing was good. That was one of the good things about taking all those penalties. We had an opportunity to work on our penalty kill and I really liked what the guys did, especially on the forecheck, up ice and heading through the neutral zone. We made it difficult for them to come in clean into our zone."






scoring summary
1st Period
02:28
COL
Philippe Dupuis (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Greg Mauldin (1), Kyle Quincey (1)
1 - 0 COL
2nd Period
05:06
COL
Kyle Quincey (1) Slapshot - ASST: Milan Hejduk (1)
2 - 0 COL
07:32
LAK
PPG - Michal Handzus (1) Snap shot - ASST: Bud Holloway (1), Jarret Stoll (1)
2 - 1 COL
12:25
LAK
John Zeiler (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Corey Elkins (1), Alexei Ponikarovsky (1)
2 - 2 Tie
3rd Period
04:32
LAK
Brad Richardson (1) Backhand shot - ASST: Justin Williams (1), Thomas Hickey (1)
3 - 2 LAK
07:29
LAK
Justin Williams (1) Wrist shot - ASST: Andrew Campbell (1), Jarret Stoll (2)
4 - 2 LAK
penalty summary
1st Period
00:38
COL
Jonas Holos  Holding  - 2 min against  Michal Handzus
01:21
LAK
Alec Martinez  Hooking  - 2 min against  Matt Duchene
03:40
LAK
Michal Handzus  Hooking  - 2 min against  Matt Duchene
05:55
COL
Cody McLeod  Tripping  - 2 min against  Jonathan Bernier
13:08
COL
Adam Foote  Holding  - 2 min against  John Zeiler
14:27
COL
Cameron Gaunce  Tripping  - 2 min against  Jarret Stoll
18:06
COL
Adam Foote  Elbowing  - 2 min against  John Zeiler
18:06
COL
Adam Foote  Roughing  - 2 min against  John Zeiler
2nd Period
02:43
LAK
Kevin Westgarth  Fighting (maj)  - 5 min against  David Koci
02:43
COL
David Koci  Fighting (maj)  - 5 min against  Kevin Westgarth
06:16
COL
Matt Duchene  Slashing  - 2 min against  Jarret Stoll
08:54
LAK
Scott Parse  Slashing  - 2 min against  Peter Mueller
15:54
COL
Cameron Gaunce  Fighting (maj)  - 5 min against  Jordan Nolan
15:54
LAK
Jordan Nolan  Fighting (maj)  - 5 min against  Cameron Gaunce
16:47
COL
Paul Stastny  Tripping  - 2 min against  Brad Richardson
16:47
COL
Chris Stewart  Roughing  - 2 min against  Justin Williams
3rd Period
06:12
COL
Adam Foote  Interference  - 2 min against  Jordan Nolan
06:12
LAK
Jordan Nolan  Diving  - 2 min against  Adam Foote
15:26
LAK
Alexei Ponikarovsky  Tripping  - 2 min against  Philippe Dupuis
18:05
COL
Kyle Quincey  Interference on goalkeeper  - 2 min against  Jonathan Bernier
20:00
COL
Cody McLeod  Holding  - 2 min against  Bud Holloway
goalie stats
Jonathan Bernier
SA: 23TOI: 60:00
GA: 2SV%: .913
Craig Anderson
SA: 18TOI: 31:36
GA: 1SV%: .944
John Grahame
SA: 24TOI: 28:24
GA: 3SV%: .875