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Scrivens, Kings blank struggling Panthers

by Alain Poupart /

SUNRISE, Fla. - After making his first start in net with the Los Angeles Kings a memorable one, Ben Scrivens wanted to share the credit.

Scrivens, acquired in the offseason trade that sent goalie Jonathan Bernier to the Toronto Maple Leafs, made 20 saves for his third career shutout as the Kings beat the Florida Panthers 3-0 at BB&T Center on Sunday afternoon.

He freely admitted he had plenty of help.

"You can't give enough credit to the guys in front," Scrivens said. "They played extremely well, and all I had to do was focus on stopping the puck and seeing it well.

"I was fortunate that I didn't give up any bad rebounds, and the rebounds [I did allow] the guys were right there to clear them away from in front of me."

Scrivens had appeared in one of the Kings' first five games this season, coming in relief of Jonathan Quick and stopping all five shots he faced in a 5-3 loss against the Winnipeg Jets on Oct. 4.

His best saves Sunday came in the first period when he stopped Kris Versteeg on a couple of one-timers.

"He was sharp early," Kings coach Darryl Sutter said. "He made some big saves and handled the puck well, which is what we needed him to do. He looked very good out there."

Scrivens' last shutout came at BB&T Center in a 3-0 Toronto victory on Feb. 18, 2013. He had a lot more work that night, as he stopped 37 shots.

"I've been fortunate that it's worked out here in Florida," Scrivens said. "It [stinks] that I'm in the West now; I'm only out here once a year."

Jordan Nolan had a goal and an assist, and Dan Carcillo and Justin Williams also scored for the Kings, who improved to 4-2-0 but won in regulation for the first time.

Williams' goal was the 500th point of his career.

"It doesn't mean too much right now, but I'm sure as I look back on my career it will take on a special meaning," Williams said. "This sport has given me so much, and to dwell on things like that right now takes away from what we are trying to do as a team. I'll have plenty of time to reflect down the road."

The victory was the third in a row for the Kings, who are halfway through a four-game trip that continues Tuesday against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

"We just need to keep it going," Nolan said. "Darryl wants us to be ready at the start of the game. We've been strong the full 60 [minutes] these past two games. Our goalies have been great, our lines have been going and we'll be ready the next game, too."

The victory was the eighth in nine meetings for the Kings, who had a seven-game winning streak against the Panthers snapped on Feb. 9, 2012, in their last visit to South Florida. The teams won't meet again until the Panthers visit Staples Center on March 22.

Florida forward Brad Boyes, who came in with four goals in his previous three games, had a breakaway early in the third period -- but the puck bobbled on him and he couldn't get a clean shot.

"I just trying to settle it for the most part and couldn't get it down to get a good shot off," Boyes said. "Aside from that, we still had a few chances, a couple of looks, nothing glorious, but they're good and they've won for a reason. They don't give up a lot of second opportunities."

Jacob Markstrom stopped 26 shots for the Panthers (2-4-0), who were coming off a 6-3 victory against the Pittsburgh Penguins in their home opener Friday night. The Panthers were shut out for the second time this season. The first was a 7-0 loss against the St. Louis Blues on Oct. 5.

The Panthers were held without a shot for the final 9:16 of the first period and the final 9:12 of the second.

After a tight-checking first period where the teams combined for 13 shots, the Kings took control in the second when they outshot Florida 16-8.

"As the game wore on, we got worn down," Panthers coach Kevin Dineen said. "That's going to happen. The problem that we have is I think our hockey IQ dropped as well. We thought we could play a fancy game and you cannot play a fancy game against the Kings, the Blues, the majority of the NHL. You can't play that way and have success. It's a continuing work in progress for us to play the game the proper way, which isn't always easy."

Carcillo opened the scoring at 8:46 after a strong effort by Mike Richards behind the Florida net. He fought off two Panthers for the puck and sent a backhand pass to the side of the net, where Carcillo one-timed it past Markstrom for his first goal of the season.

Williams made it 2-0 at 14:55 after a turnover inside the Florida blue line. He beat Markstrom on a nifty give-and-go with Anze Kopitar, one-timing a pass in the slot.

Nolan added his first goal of the season at 12:28 of the third period when he skated through the slot and deflected Jarret Stoll's centering pass from outside the right circle past Markstrom.

The story on this day, though, was Scrivens and the Kings' defensive work.

"It's tough to get a shutout in this League," Sutter said. "We didn't give up any odd-man rushes, [for the most part] we stayed out of the penalty box and we didn't turn the puck over. When you do all those things, you give yourself a chance to win."

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