LOS ANGELES, Calif. - Kari Lehtonen posted his first shutout of the season with 27 saves, and the Dallas Stars got goals from Ryan Garbutt and Jason Spezza in a 2-0 victory over the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday night.
The highlight of Lehtonen's 28th career shutout was an acrobatic glove save the 11-year veteran made while diving across the crease to rob Jarret Stoll at the edge of the crease at 13:16 of the second period.
Kings goalie Martin Jones, making his third start of the season, had 25 saves against the team that dealt him his first loss in the NHL last year after he had won his first eight decisions while filling in for an injured Jonathan Quick.
The defending Stanley Cup champions, coming off a frustrating 6-5, shootout loss at Anaheim in which they twice blew two-goal leads, tightened things up considerably in their own end.
Garbutt opened the scoring at 13:13 of the first, following a frenetic end-to-end sequence that began with John Klingberg hitting the left post with a 50-foot slapshot while Los Angeles defenceman Brayden McNabb was serving a delay-of-game penalty. The Kings were 0 for 3 on the power play, extending their drought to 17 straight.
The Kings stormed back the other way, and Lehtonen robbed Dwight King with a spectacular leg save on a backhander at the edge of the crease while flat on his stomach. Seconds later, Garbutt converted his own rebound after defenceman Drew Doughty skated past the loose puck.
A Dallas goal was disallowed at 7:20 of the second period after a replay review determined that Curtis McKenzie's 35-foot wrist shot was deflected by Jones into the mesh above the glass and bounced back onto the ice before play was allowed to continue.
A similar incident occurred during the Kings' 3-2 shootout loss at Detroit last Jan. 18, when Niklas Kronwall's deflected shot bounced off the protective screen, then off Quick's back before going into the net for the tying goal with 26.1 seconds left in regulation. That goal was allowed to stand, and the NHL determined during the off-season that those kinds of plays would be reviewable from now on.
Centre Cody Eakin returned to the Dallas lineup after missing three games because of an upper body injury. Struggling right wing Ales Hemsky, who signed a three-year, $12 million contract with Dallas after spending last season with Ottawa, was a healthy scratch for the first time. The 12-year veteran has no goals in his first 15 games ??? his longest drought from the start of a season since his 2002-03 rookie campaign with Edmonton, when he came up empty in his first 25.
NOTES: Next Monday's Hall of Fame inductions will have a distinct Stars-Kings flavour, as Mike Modano and Rob Blake are among the honorees. Modano, who spent all but one of his 21 NHL seasons with the Stars/Minnesota North Stars franchise, is the NHL's all-time leader among American-born players in goals (561) and points (1,374). Blake, currently the Kings' assistant general manager and a team vice-president, spent the bulk of his 20-year playing career with them and won a Norris Trophy as the league's top defenceman in 1997-98. ... Thursday marked exactly 30 years since Kings centre Bernie Nicholls became the first player in NHL history to score a goal in all three periods and another in overtime, when he led Los Angeles to a 5-4 road win against the Quebec Nordiques.