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game recap

Jeff Carter scores four points in Kings win

Forward gets two goals, two assists against Panthers

by Alain Poupart / Correspondent

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Jeff Carter had two goals and two assists, and the Los Angeles Kings broke out of their scoring slump when they defeated the Florida Panthers 6-3 at BB&T Center on Thursday.

Los Angeles (28-23-4) was coming off 5-0 losses against the Washington Capitals and Tampa Bay Lightning, and hadn't scored a goal in regulation in its previous three games.

"It's nice," Carter said. "We don't get it too often. We're typically a pretty low-scoring, tight-checking team. It's nice to see the guys get rewarded. The last couple of games we got it handed to us pretty good, but we still had a lot of chances but just weren't able to bury them. So it's nice to see them go in the net."


WATCH: All Kings vs. Panthers highlights


Carter's four points tied his career high, which he had done six times, most recently Oct. 22, 2015 against the San Jose Sharks.

He has 29 goals, second in the NHL behind Sidney Crosby (30).

"I'm happy they're going in the net and I'm happy I'm helping the team win," Carter said.

Tanner Pearson had a goal and two assists, and Dustin Brown, Tyler Toffoli and Dwight King scored for the Kings, whose six goals came within one of their season high (a 7-0 victory against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Nov. 8).

Goalie Peter Budaj made 36 saves in his eighth consecutive start.

Video: LAK@FLA: Carter rifles rebound past Reimer

"I'm glad after the goal slump that we had, we scored six," Budaj said. "It was great. Guys played great in front of me and made my job much easier when we had the lead."

James Reimer started in net for the Panthers, but was pulled after Toffoli's goal made it 3-1at 14:59 of the first period. He allowed three goals on the first eight shots he faced.

Roberto Luongo replaced Reimer, but he also got pulled after Carter's goal at 7:31 of the second made it 6-1. Luongo allowed three goals on 12 shots.

Jussi Jokinen, Jonathan Marchessault and Aleksander Barkov scored for the Panthers (23-20-10), who were playing for the first time since Friday. The Panthers had their season-best three-game winning streak come to an end before they embark on a five-game road trip that begins Saturday against the Nashville Predators.

"It's one of those games," Panthers coach Tom Rowe said. "It wasn't pretty, everyone knows it wasn't pretty, and we're going to forget about it. We can't dwell on it. It was a bad game from start to the end of it."

Video: LAK@FLA: Carter nets his second goal of the game


Goal of the game

Seven seconds after the end of a power play, Aaron Ekblad passed to Vincent Trocheck at the point. He sent the puck behind the net to Nick Bjugstad, who found Jokinen to cut the Kings' lead to 2-1 at 12:04 of the first period.

Video: LAK@FLA: Jokinen slams home Bjugstad's slick pass


Save of the game

Carter was denied a hat trick midway through the third period when Reimer made a quick pad save on a low shot from the slot.

Video: LAK@FLA: Reimer uses pad to deny Carter


Highlight of the game

Brown had the puck behind the Florida net when he shot at Reimer to make it 1-0 1:39 into the game. The puck deflected off Reimer's stick and found its way between his body and the left post.

Video: LAK@FLA: Brown banks a power-play goal off Reimer


Unsung performance of the game

Kings defenseman Brayden McNabb tied for the team lead with three hits and was plus-5.


They said it

"When you get some goaltending, get the first save and score the first goal, it makes it a lot easier." - Kings coach Darryl Sutter


"I think everything is there, it's just the last couple of games we couldn't score. You lose 5-0 twice in a row, it kind of gives you a kick in the butt. When we give ourselves the first goal, we're pretty confident playing with that lead." -- Kings forward Tanner Pearson


Video: LAK@FLA: Pearson knocks home Brown's slick feed


"They were ready. They lost the last two games and we knew they were going to come out hard and we didn't. No excuse, we weren't ready." -- Panthers forward Jonathan Marchessault


Video: LAK@FLA: Marchessault rifles wrist shot past Budaj


Need to know

Kings defenseman Paul LaDue had his first NHL point in his second career game when he had an assist on King's goal at 4:27 of the second period. … Sutter changed three of the Kings' four forward lines. "Tyler has been a little snake bit," Sutter said. "We knew we'd need four lines. Put it in the hat, stir it. That's what we came out with." … Barkov's goal gave him 14 points (seven goals, seven assists) in his past 13 games.


What's next

Kings: Host the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday (10:30 p.m. ET; FS-W, FS-A, NHL.TV)

Panthers: At the Nashville Predators on Saturday (2 p.m. ET; FS-F, FS-TN, FS-F, NHL.TV)


Video: Kings' offense erupts for six goals in 6-3 win

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