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Campbell's goal helps Blue Jackets hold off Kings

by Curtis Zupke /

LOS ANGELES -- There was no shouting or berating in the Columbus Blue Jackets' dressing room after a historically poor second period Thursday, to hear captain Nick Foligno tell it.

Columbus did not have a shot on goal in an emotion-filled second, the first time in franchise history that the Blue Jackets were held without a shot in a period. But the Blue Jackets regained their poise, and Gregory Campbell scored the winning goal midway through the third for a 3-2 win against the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center.

"[Coach John Tortorella] came in and was really good," Foligno said. "He kind of settled us down. I think our emotions got the best of us. Some heated play was going on, and I think he got our minds back on the game and said 'We've got [20] minutes to find a way to get this.' I thought the guys really re-focused."

Campbell's goal at 10:52 made it 3-1. He fired a wrist shot past goaltender Jonathan Quick off Jack Johnson's drop pass after Johnson carried the puck into the Kings' zone.

That turned out to be the game-winner after Jeff Carter pulled the Kings to 3-2 with one minute remaining.

Sergei Bobrovsky made 31 saves for Columbus, which is 4-3-0 under new coach Tortorella after it started the season 0-7-0. The Blue Jackets won at Staples Center for the first time since Jan. 7, 2012.

"I liked the spirit of the team," Tortorella said. "They fought for one another. When someone was in trouble they jumped in. We were getting to their blue [line]. In the third period I thought we defended well and battled. Teams bumped up. In that type of game you're going to get bumped up, but it's satisfying because I thought they played the right way. It's the beginning of an identity."

The Blue Jackets will try to sweep their three-game California trip when they visit the Anaheim Ducks on Friday.

Columbus took a 2-1 lead into the third period despite being outshot 8-0 in a penalty-filled second. It marked the third time in franchise history that the Kings allowed no shots on goal in a period and was their fewest allowed in a period at home. The Kings allowed zero shots in a period in 1978 at the St. Louis Blues and in 2014 at the Anaheim Ducks in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The loss was the second for the Kings (8-5-0) in their past 10 games. Defenseman Alec Martinez scored in the first period, and Tanner Pearson and Drew Doughty later hit the crossbar and post.

"When you hold a team to eight shots in the first two periods and you're still down, I think you're not doing a good enough job in the scoring areas and bearing down when you get them," forward Milan Lucic said. "It definitely wasn't our best effort from how we've been playing as late, so hopefully we can learn from something like this."

The Blue Jackets went ahead to stay when Foligno's centering pass hit the leg of linemate Brandon Dubinsky and went into the net at 18:13 of the first period to put Columbus up 2-1. The play started as a dump-in and Foligno turned away from Los Angeles defenseman Brayden McNabb from behind the net.

The Blue Jackets scored first when Cam Atkinson redirected Dubinsky's pass from the inner edge of the left circle past Quick at 6:22 of the first period.

Martinez tied it when he scored a power-play goal at 12:47 on a slap shot from the left side to complete a good passing sequence. Bobrovsky might have been screened by Johnson, who bent down to block the shot.

The Kings and Blue Jackets showed a heavy dislike for each other with a combined 20 penalties, two fights and numerous post-whistle scrums, including one involving Quick after the Kings goaltender slashed Columbus forward Scott Hartnell.

"We haven't had one of those games in a while," Hartnell said. "It felt like back in the '80s where everyone was chirping after the whistle. There was a couple of big fights. [Foligno] led us the way there, having a great fight against [Kyle] Clifford. We followed suit. We were in the battles. We were hard."

Kings defenseman Jake Muzzin said the penalties in the second period further diminished whatever momentum they were creating.

"It's part of the game," Muzzin said. "There's going to be games where it's like that and you've got to stay focused, stay in it … We should have built off that more than we did."

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