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Sharks rout Kings in DeBoer's debut as coach

by Curtis Zupke

LOS ANGELES -- Martin Jones and the San Jose Sharks kicked off thePeter DeBoer era with a victory, and spoiled the Los Angeles Kings' season opener once again.

Jones made 19 saves in his Sharks debut and first game against his former Kings teammates and Joe Pavelski had a goal and two assists in a 5-1 win at Staples Center on Wednesday.

It was the first regular-season game for DeBoer, who replaced Todd McLellan after the Sharks missed the Stanley Cup Playoffs last season. He couldn't have asked for a better beginning.

"Not much went wrong tonight," DeBoer said. "Like I told the team, that game tonight was a culmination of a month of hard work. We showed up at camp and really worked and paid attention to detail and the guys had a real captive audience. Tonight we played like we're going to have to play: with four lines, six defensemen, great goaltending, great special teams."

Jones was beaten on the Kings' first shot of the season 1:49 into the game but was perfect the rest of the way. Jones said he approached the game like any other and held his composure after the initial score.

"I've been scored on before," Jones said. "It's not the way you want to start a game. I thought we showed a lot of character as a group, not letting that spiral. We could have easily done that."

Pavelski capped his first game as Sharks captain with an assist on Joonas Donskoi's first NHL goal, a rebound off the end boards at 3:31 of the third period that completed the scoring.

Pavelski liked how San Jose managed the puck and pressured the Kings.

"We just controlled it well," Pavelski said. "We put it in good spots all night, where we had chances to get back or chances to get on the forecheck and create that pressure. Game 1. Great job by the guys, and there's a lot of good things we can take from it."

Jones, a backup to Jonathan Quick in Los Angeles for the past two seasons, made his best save on Tyler Toffoli's power-play bid from the right slot in the second period in a forgettable night for the Kings.

Los Angeles looked lackluster in two trademark areas, defense and puck possession. Its biggest impressions were made on hits byDustin Brown on Logan Couture andMatt Greene on Barclay Goodrow.

"There were some hits out there that were questionable," Pavelski said. "It's part of the game. It's part of playing the Kings."

Milan Lucic received a match penalty for going after Couture near the end of the game. Lucic had one shot, and the Kings' top line of Lucic, Anze Kopitar and Marian Gaborik was a combined minus-6.

"Flat," Kings coach Darryl Sutter said of the line.

Sutter sounded like the Kings were ill-suited to play against their Pacific Division rival, an alarming performance out of the gate. Los Angeles had 12 shots in the first 38 minutes and was outshot 32-20.

"We're playing against a big, fast team [and] we didn't play like a big, fast team," Sutter said. "You've got to check. If you don't check, you can't score. We had a lot of guys, especially top guys, that weren't interested in that part of the game."

San Jose took advantage of sloppy play and penalties by the Kings for a 2-1 lead after the first period. Pavelski tipped inBrent Burns' shot for a power-play goal at 15:52 withNick Shore in the penalty box for closing his hand on the puck. That came after Joe Thornton finished off a 3-on-1 with a wrist shot past Quick at 9:43.

Burns and Tomas Hertl scored 2:07 apart in the second period to make it 4-1.

The Kings gave the Sharks more than nine minutes of power-play time.

"It's definitely not the game we drew up, and our special teams were not good," Kopitar said. "We just talked about them but we didn't execute them. We didn't play the way we should. It was very sloppy."

San Jose won its sixth straight season-opener, the longest active streak in the NHL. That includes a 4-0 victory in the Kings' Stanley Cup banner-raising opener last season at Staples Center.

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