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Kings strike late, beat Edmonton 2-1

by Alex Kinkopf / Los Angeles Kings

No opponent is a safe one, and that showed Thursday night in the Kings’ 2-1 win over the Edmonton Oilers at STAPLES Center.

It was the Kings’ third consecutive 2-1 win, backboned by disciplined defense, outstanding goaltending and a pair of gritty goals. “It’s nothing new for us, that’s Kings hockey,” Jeff Carter said following the game.

“We’re grinding,” said Muzzin. “These are games that you want to win now so when it comes playoff time you know how to do it, so it’s crucial for us to continue winning these.”

Edmonton, a far-cry from a playoff team sitting dead-last in the NHL’s standings, did not go down easy.

The Kings opened the night with a rather sub-par first period of play, and improved upon their performance in the second, only to surrender the first goal of the evening to Edmonton’s Zack Kassian with just over a minute left in the middle frame.

“The first two periods were not good and we knew it,” said Carter. “We knew that we had to get our game going and we did.”

That they did.

Five minutes into the third, after winning an offensive zone faceoff, Jeff Carter drove to the Oilers’ net to stuff home a loose puck that sat behind Cam Talbot following a Tyler Toffoli shot. Carter’s goal, his 15th of the season, was his first in eight games, and tied the score 1-1.

With just over five minutes left in regulation, Jeff Carter directed a shot on Edmonton’s net after swinging atop the left point of the Oilers’ zone after connecting on a cycle sequence with Tyler Toffoli.

Dwight King, stationed in front of the net, redirected Carter’s shot past Talbot to give the Kings a 2-1 lead, one they would hang on to to record their third consecutive win.

The Kings won their league-leading seventh game of the season when trailing entering the third period. The team also notched their 14th win of the campaign when allowing the first goal of a contest, the second-most in the NHL.

Tyler Toffoli (2A), Dwight King (1G, 1A) and Jeff Carter (1G, 1A) led all Kings players in points scored (2), Jeff Carter in shots taken (6), Luke Schenn in hits delivered (6), Brayden McNabb in shots blocked (3), and Drew Doughty in minutes played (31:42). Jonathan Quick made 26 saves in the win.

The Kings will finish off their current three-game home stand Saturday night when they host the Buffalo Sabres at STAPLES Center, where the puck is scheduled to drop just after 8:00 PM PST.

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