SAN JOSE – After facing a deficit less than 90 seconds into play, the Kings reeled off four consecutive goals, never looking back, winning 4-1 against the San Jose Sharks Tuesday night at SAP Center.
Jonathan Quick, making his preseason debut, surrendered a goal to Joe Thornton 1:28 into the first period. The Kings’ goaltender was perfect from then on out, stopping each and every one of the next 16 shots he faced until Martin Jones came in to hone the crease in the third period.
One other King was making his preseason debut Tuesday night, and his entrance left quite an impression. Drew Doughty got the Kings on the board midway through the first period to tie the game 1-1.
Doughty, after receiving a soft touch pass from Justin Williams upon entering San Jose’s zone, utilized the space he was given, walked in, and rifled a wrist-shot to the top-shelf past Antti Niemi to knot the score. Doughty’s tally came on the Kings’ first power play of the evening.
The Kings were quick to act in the second, as Dustin Brown scored just 44 seconds into the frame to provide the club with a 2-1 lead. Jordan Nolan, who was skating alongside Brown and Anze Kopitar, snapped a stretch pass toward Brown, who was crashing San Jose’s net. After Kopitar got a piece of Nolan’s pass, Brown slammed home the Kings’ second goal of the night.
With just over three minutes to play in the second, Justin Williams potted the Kings’ third goal of the night. Dwight King, who has been concentrating on puck possession during the preseason, did just that to set up Williams’ marker. King swung the puck behind San Jose’s net, saw Williams break free of defenders in front of San Jose’s slot, and fed Williams a pass that he one-timed past Niemi to give the Kings a 3-1 lead late in the second.
Jonathan Quick exited the game after two periods, making 16 saves on San Jose’s 17 shots in his first live action of the preseason. Martin Jones replaced Quick in the third period.
Late in the third period, Williams and King went vice-versa, as Williams, this time, fed King, who snapped home the Kings’ fourth and final goal of the night. King’s goal gave the Kings a 4-1 lead, the night’s eventual final score.
Martin Jones, in 20 minutes of action in the Kings’ crease, stopped all seven shots he faced in the third period.
Anze Kopitar finished the night with two points, assisting on the Kings’ first two goals.
Justin Williams led the team in points, assisting on the Kings’ first and fourth goals, while scoring the club’s third goal of the night.
The Kings didn’t exactly ease Drew Doughty back into live-game action. Doughty led all players on the roster with 22:55 minutes of ice time.
Now 4-0-1 during the preseason, the Kings are now off to Colorado Springs, CO, where they’ll see the Colorado Avalanche at the Broadmoor World Arena on Thursday night. The puck is slated to drop at 6:00PM PT.