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game recap

Kings recover, defeat Predators in home opener

Iafallo scores winner with 59 seconds remaining after Los Angeles blows three-goal lead in third

by Dan Greenspan / NHL.com Independent Correspondent

Iafallo's clutch go-ahead goal

NSH@LAK: Iafallo buries rebound to reclaim lead

Alex Iafallo puts home the Dustin Brown rebound to give the Kings a late 5-4 lead in the 3rd period

  • 01:04 •

LOS ANGELES -- Alex Iafallo scored the go-ahead goal with 59 seconds left, and the Los Angeles Kings recovered from blowing a big lead in the third period to win their home opener, 7-4 against the Nashville Predators at Staples Center on Saturday.

The Predators scored three straight goals in the third period to tie the game 4-4 before Iafallo put the Kings back in front 5-4 at 19:01.

"I think there's a lot of work to be done in learning how to win again," said Los Angeles forward Dustin Brown, who had a goal and two assists. "And what I mean by that is, for whatever reason we kind of sat back on our leads. I think we maybe took our foot off the gas, and then our forecheck doesn't work and our neutral zone doesn't work, and then we're playing D zone."

 

[WATCH: All Predators vs. Kings highlights]

 

Ilya KovalchukAnze Kopitar and Michael Amadio each had a goal and an assist for the Kings (2-2-0), and Jack Campbell made 28 saves.

Matt Duchene scored a power-play goal for the Predators (3-2-0) in their first road game of the season, extending his point streak to five games (two goals, seven assists). Juuse Saros allowed six goals on 37 shots.

"It's a good wake-up call for us this early in the season," Duchene said. "I think that was our worst game of the year."

Video: NSH@LAK: Kopitar buries one-timer off Brown's feed

Viktor Arvidsson scored 1:17 into the third to get Nashville within 4-2, Duchene scored at 10:56 to make it 4-3, and Colton Sissons scored 34 seconds later to tie the game 4-4 at 11:30.

Kings coach Todd McLellan called a timeout after Sissons scored to allow them to regroup, and Iafallo, who hit the post with 4:15 remaining, scored the game-winner off the rebound of Brown's shot. It was his first goal of the season.

Brown scored into an empty net with 36 seconds left to make it 6-4, and Drew Doughty scored from the Los Angeles zone as Saros was skating to the bench to make it 7-4 with 29 seconds remaining.

"We want to be what we saw for the first two periods," McLellan said. "We're accomplishing things as a team. We're starting to develop our identity. We slip back a little bit every now and then, and that's why there is so much inconsistency in our game. But once we get it and everybody buys in for a full 60 (minutes), we'll be fine."

Kopitar gave the Kings a 2-1 lead at 11:14 of the first period when he scored on a one-timer off a pass from Brown.

Kopitar has two goals and five assists during a four-game point streak.

Kyle Clifford made it 3-1 at 6:53 of the second when he redirected a shot by defenseman Joakim Ryan, and Kovalchuk extended the lead to 4-1 at 18:12.

The Predators took a 1-0 lead at 4:55 of the first on Mikael Granlund's sharp-angled shot from the edge of the left face-off circle.

Amadio tied it 1-1 at 8:47 when he scored off a centering pass from Sean Walker that was tipped by Kovalchuk.

Nashville's Filip Forsberg failed to score a goal for the first time this season but had an assist on Granlund's goal to extend his point streak to five games (four goals, three assists).

Video: NSH@LAK: Amadio sets up Kovalchuk down low

 

They said it

"There's lots of good things in the third we can build on, but we shot ourselves in the foot. You've got to give them a lot of credit. They were the better team through 40 minutes. They pushed us around a little bit." -- Predators center Matt Duchene

"Obviously, the past month here has been a lot of learning. New systems, especially for the forecheck, neutral zone. It's a little tough to implement into a game situation right away, but we've been at it for a month, and I think when we're all on the same page and everyone is doing their individual job, it works really well like you saw tonight." -- Kings defenseman Joakim Ryan, who played his first game with Los Angeles after two seasons with the San Jose Sharks

 

Need to know

The Kings got their 1,000th home win (1,000-749-64 with 211 ties). ... Walker had two assists for his first multipoint game in the NHL. He has two goals and two assists during a three-game point streak. ... Brown has two multipoint games this season (two points Oct. 5 against Edmonton Oilers). ... Predators center Ryan Johansen had two assists to extend his point streak to five games (two goals, five assists). ... Forsberg and Nashville forward Calle Jarnkrok each played his 400th NHL game.

 

What's next

Predators: At the Vegas Golden Knights on Tuesday (10 p.m. ET; ESPN+, ATTSN-RM, FS-TN, NHL.TV)

Kings: Host the Vegas Golden Knights on Sunday (10 p.m. ET; ESPN+, FS-W, ATTSN-RM, NHL.TV)

Video: Amadio, Brown lead Kings past Predators, 7-4

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