LOS ANGELES -- Jeff Carter scored his second goal in as many games and Peter Budaj made 21 saves to help the Los Angeles Kings defeat the New Jersey Devils 4-2 at Staples Center on Saturday.
Alec Martinez, Tanner Pearson and Jake Muzzin scored for Los Angeles (9-9-1). Carter has a Kings-high seven goals and 14 points.
"He's carried the team on his back," Kings coach Darryl Sutter said. "Every time he's been on the ice and we didn't have the puck, he was making sure we were going to get the puck back. He's shown a lot of leadership and been really, really good for us."
WATCH: All Devils vs. Kings highlights
John Moore and Nick Lappin scored for the Devils (9-5-3) and Cory Schneider made 24 saves. New Jersey has lost two games following a five-game winning streak.
"Either way, whether you're coming from behind or even, they're a difficult team to play against," Devils coach John Hynes said. "We weren't ready at certain times in the game to be able to have the right type of intensity that we needed to be able to control the territory we wanted to."
After taking a 1-0 lead, New Jersey gave up three goals before Lappin poked the puck away from an outstretched Budaj and scored with 2:32 left in the third period to make it 3-2. Muzzin scored an empty-net goal with 28 seconds remaining.
"One thing we've got to be good at is coming out stronger in that first period," Pearson said. "We let another first one in, but we battled back and were able to get the win at home."
Video: NJD@LAK: Budaj denies Devils with series of saves
Moore scored on a shot through traffic 3:38 into the first period to give the Devils a 1-0 lead.
Martinez tied the game at 1-1 at 4:58 of the second period, after Nic Dowd faked a shot and passed to Martinez for a shot through traffic, past Schneider, who was screened by Devin Setoguchi.
Pearson scored an unassisted goal at 18:20 of the second period, capitalizing on a failed clearing attempt for a 2-1 lead.
Carter finished off 2-on-1 45 seconds into the third period when he caught his own rebound and slipped it underneath Schneider's legs, giving Los Angeles a 3-1 lead.
"Sometimes you play well and win, sometimes you lose and other times you don't play well and you win and sometimes you get what you deserve," Schneider said. "The last game (3-2 loss at the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday) we did a lot of things right. Tonight it wasn't quite there for a full 60, but I thought we finished strong and made it close, but for me it's tough to give up three (goals) in those last two games."
Video: NJD@LAK: Lappin scores on loose puck, cuts deficit
Goal of the game
Carter broke away, took a wrist shot on Schneider, beat him to the rebound and stuffed it in quickly before Schneider had a chance to stop it.
Video: NJD@LAK: Carter grabs own rebound to beat Schneider
Save of the game
Schneider made a shorthanded save on Tyler Toffoli with the Devils winning 1-0. Jordan Nolan was penalized for holding, giving the Devils a power play. Right off the faceoff, Toffoli broke away, skated around a defender in the neutral zone and went to his backhand from close range, but Schneider sprawled out and kicked the puck away.
Video: NJD@LAK: Schneider makes a great sprawling save
Unsung moment of the game
Dowd faked a shot and spun around his defender which allowed him to find Martinez in the high slot for the tying goal in the second period.
Video: NJD@LAK: Martinez's wrister ties the game in the 2nd
Highlight of the game
The Devils tried to clear the zone but Pearson skated in and got to the loose puck, quickly taking a shot and banking it into the net for the go-ahead goal in the second period.
Video: NJD@LAK: Pearson rips a wrist shot past Schneider
They said it
"It's two teams that play similarly, take a lot of pride in their forecheck, play strong defensively. They have a really mobile back end and our forwards had to do a really good job on them all night and play physical. If you don't hit those guys, they can jump up in the rush or develop plays on the rush, and I thought we did a good job of that tonight." -- Kings defenseman Alec Martinez
"Right now we're a team that needs that one or two (goals) allowed, and that's on me just to be one goal better and that's been the difference these last few games: one goal. So I can look at myself and just find a way to make one more save." -- Devils goalie Cory Schneider
Need to know
The Kings honored goaltender Rogie Vachon before the game for his recent induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame. … Martinez's goal was his third goal of the season and 42nd in the NHL, surpassing Robert Murdoch for ninth on the Kings list among defensemen. ... Kings captain Anze Kopitar missed his fourth straight game with an upper-body injury. ... The Devils were 0-for-2 on the power play and are 0-for-26 in their past eight games.
Devils: At the San Jose Sharks on Monday (10:30 p.m. ET; CSN-CA, MSG+, NHL.TV)
Kings: At the Anaheim Ducks on Sunday (8 p.m. ET; PRIME, FS-W, NHL.TV)
Video: Budaj, Carter lift Kings past Devils