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Gaudreau and Monahan lead Flames to 4-2 victory over Kings

by TY PILSON @typilson /

The Johnny and Mony Show proved a hit once again.

Fans sat back and enjoyed their popcorn Sunday night at the Scotiabank Saddledome as the Flames beat the L.A. Kings 4-2.

Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan played starring roles, as they each scored a goal and ended the night with three points apiece in dominating performances to help dump the visitors from Tinseltown.

Michael Stone, Mark Giordano and Kris Versteeg also scored for Calgary, while Brian Elliott made 19 saves to earn his 11th straight win.

Anze Kopitar and Nic Dowd tallied for the Kings.

It was the third of five matchups between the Flames and Kings this season, two teams once locked in a battle for a wildcard playoff spot. The Flames won 2-1 in overtime at the 'Dome Feb. 28 after the Kings won 5-0 at the Staples Center back in November.

The two clubs will play twice more this season: March 29 at the 'Dome and April 6 in L.A.

With Micheal Ferland held out of the game and under observation for the mumps, youngster Curtis Lazar - acquired in a trade-deadline deal with the Ottawa Senators - made his Flames debut playing on a line with Sam Bennett and Lance Bouma.

He collected his first point, an assist, on Versteeg's late empty-netter.

Monahan got the homeside on the board first when No. 23 scored his 23rd goal of the season at the 8:15 mark of the opening frame. Gaudreau gained the zone on a rush before making a drop pass to the trailing Monahan who snapped the puck from the left faceoff circle past Jonathan Quick high gloveside.

Video: CGY@CHI: Monahan beats Quick to break the ice

Just over two minutes later after Monahan had a glorious chance to make it two straight for him on a sweet passing play with Gaudreau, the Flames held the puck in the zone and Monahan feed Gaudreau who passed back to Stone who wired a slapper far-side past Quick.

After allowing two goals on seven shots, Quick was pulled for Ben Bishop.

Former Flames captain Jarome Iginla helped the Kings answer back when he passed to Dustin Brown who tapped it over to Kopitar who quickly tipped the puck past Elliott with less than two minutes left in the first period.

With the teams four-on-four to start the second frame, Giordano took a hard cross-ice pass point-to-point from Dougie Hamilton 47 seconds in and fired a shot that deflected off Kings defenceman Alec Martinez's stick and up-and-over Bishop's shoulder.

Just 50 seconds later, Monahan sprung Gaudreau with a long pass up the middle and he made no mistake, going forehand-backhand and roofing the puck over Bishop's catcher.

Video: LAK@CGY: Gaudreau roofs slick backhand on breakaway

Dowd got the visitors back within a pair when he tipped home a point shot from Paul Ladue at 5:31.

Gaudreau almost got his second of the game not long after when he was sprung up the middle again on a partial breakaway and switched it up, going backhand-forehand and looked to tuck it into the open cage after deking Bishop out with the move but Ladue dove and just smacked the puck away at the last second.

Versteeg's marker was the only scoring in the third period.

NOTES: The Flames have a 22-15-1-2 record against the Western Conference this season and they are 11-9-1-2 against the Pacific Division … Two Flames are nearing career milestones: Mark Giordano need one goal for 100 while Kris Versteeg is three assists away from 200 … Speaking of Giordano, he now has 334 career points in the Flaming C and trails Robert Reichel by 20 points for 17th all-time in franchise scoring … Former Flames captain and now King Jarome Iginla is Calgary's all-time leader in games played (1,219), goals (525) and points 1,095) … The first of Johnny Gaudreau's three career hat-tricks came against the Kings on Dec. 22, 2014 …

UP NEXT: The Flames travel to D.C. to take on Ovie and the Capitals Tuesday (5 p.m., SNW, SN960 THE FAN) in the first of a three-game road trip, with stops after in Nashville Thursday and St. Louis Saturday.


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