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Avs aim to rebound in Los Angeles

by Brian Compton
AVALANCHE (40-25-6) at KINGS (41-24-5)

Last 10: Colorado 5-5-0; Los Angeles 5-4-1.

Season Series: This is the second of four meetings between the teams. They last met on Feb. 13, when the Kings skated away with a 3-0 victory at the Staples Center. Jonathan Quick made 22 saves for the shutout.

Big Story: They'll likely still get in, but the Kings and Avalanche are no longer locks to reach the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Los Angeles enters Monday's action with 87 points -- just six ahead of the No. 9 Calgary Flames, while Colorado is just five ahead.

Team Scope:

Avalanche: Colorado hit a bump in the road on Sunday night, as it dropped a 5-2 decision in Anaheim in a game that was overshadowed by Teemu Selanne's 600th NHL goal. The Avalanche have lost two in a row.

"Unfortunately it was against us — but, yes, I'm happy for him," Colorado defenseman Ruslan Salei said. "It's a huge milestone. I want to congratulate him — and I did on the ice."

Kings: Quick saved the day for the Kings on Saturday, when he stopped all 26 shots he faced in a 1-0 win against the New York Islanders at the Staples Center. Quick preserved the lead with eight seconds remaining, when he denied Kyle Okposo's one-timer from point-blank range.

"It was a great effort by Quick," Kings coach Terry Murray said. "He made a save at the end of the game, with about 10 seconds left, on a little pass from behind the net, to Okposo, I think it was. He gave us a good game. We had four penalty kills. They had a lot of time in our zone. The penalty killing is largely due to the success of the goaltender, and he was very alert, sharp. A good bounce-back game."

Who's Hot: Avs forward Chris Stewart has a seven-game points streak. He has six goals and six assists during that span. … Kings forward Brad Richardson scored the game's lone tally on Saturday. It snapped a four-game drought.

Injury Report: Colorado forwards David Jones (knee) and David Koci (hand) are on injured reserve, while Stephane Yelle (leg) is day-to-day. Brandon Yip is expected to return in the beginning of April from a separated shoulder and defenseman Ryan Wilson is out with a concussion.

Stat Pack: Paul Stastny was held scoreless on Sunday for the first time since the NHL returned from the Olympics. Stastny, who represented Team USA in Vancouver, had at least one point in nine straight contests, during which time he had five goals and 11 assists. It was the longest streak by an Avalanche player this season.

Puck Drop: "It was a very important win. It's a win that is very hard to come by tonight, because this is a game you're supposed to win as a team, and those are the hardest kinds of games to win. But it's two points.

"Everybody keeps winning in this conference. I've been saying this right from the start of the year, that it's going to be a race right down to the very end. We're going to get into the final six games of April and they're all going to have great meaning in this conference." -- Kings coach Terry Murray
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