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game recap

Lightning extend point streak to 16 in victory against Kings

Kucherov has goal, three assists to help Tampa Bay win seventh straight

by Dan Greenspan / NHL.com Correspondent

Kucherov nets PPG for 400th point

TBL@LAK: Kucherov extends point streak with PPG

Nikita Kucherov buries Steven Stamkos' feed on a two-man advantage to notch his 400th career point and extend his point streak to 12 games

  • 00:51 •

LOS ANGELES -- Nikita Kucherov had a goal and three assists, and the Tampa Bay Lightning extended the longest point streak in the NHL this season to 16 games with a 6-2 win against the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center on Thursday.

Steven Stamkos had a goal and two assists for the Lightning (32-7-2), who won their seventh consecutive game to improve to 15-0-1 in their past 16 games. Tampa Bay has not lost in regulation since it was defeated 3-1 by the Anaheim Ducks on Nov. 27. 

The Lightning lead the Toronto Maple Leafs and Calgary Flames by 12 points for the best record in the NHL, becoming the first team in the expansion era to have a lead of at least 12 points in the overall standings at the halfway point of its season.

 

[WATCH: All Lightning vs. Kings highlights]

 

"We're on a good stretch, obviously, and we're having fun with it," Lightning forward Ryan Callahan said. "Guys are enjoying it, we're having a good time and we're coming to the rink and we're ready to work, [that] is the biggest thing. Tonight was no different."

Brayden Point and Callahan each had a goal and an assist, Ryan McDonagh and Mathieu Joseph scored, and Andrei Vasilevskiy made 28 saves to improve to 7-0-1 since returning from a foot injury. 

Video: TBL@LAK: Callahan makes move to backhand and scores

Austin Wagner and Drew Doughty scored, and Jonathan Quick made 27 saves for the Kings (16-23-3), who have lost three of four following a four-game winning streak.

"When you play a team like that you know you have to play well or they can make you look bad in your own rink, so our guys were ready cause they knew that could happen," Kings coach Willie Desjardins said. 

Kucherov gave the Lightning a 1-0 lead at 6:28 of the first period, scoring for the fifth straight game during a 5-on-3 power play. It was Kucherov's 400th NHL point in 406 career games, becoming the first player from the 2011 NHL Draft to reach the 400-point milestone.  

Kucherov extended his point streak to 12 games. He has 27 points (eight goals, 19 assists) during his streak, including 15 assists in his past seven games. It was the seventh consecutive multipoint game for Kucherov, who leads the NHL with 69 points. 

"He's dangerous every time he's on the ice, and you give our team a 5-on-3 there at the beginning, you kind of expect Kucher and these guys to put it in the back of the net," Joseph said. "Great job by him, and he's been the leading scorer in the League and it's not for no reason."

Point made it 2-0 at 7:53 during the same two-man advantage. He has 13 points (three goals, 10 assists) during an eight-game point streak.

Callahan extended the lead to 3-0 at 14:05 when he intercepted Jake Muzzin's pass in the neutral zone and scored on a breakaway. Callahan ended a 15-game goalless drought with his first goal since Nov. 23 against the Chicago Blackhawks. 

McDonagh scored 25 seconds into the second period to make it 4-0 before Wagner cut it to 4-1 at 7:55. Stamkos extended the lead to 5-1 at 17:05 on the power play.

Joseph made it 6-1 at 10:04 of the third period.

Doughty scored on the power play at 17:36 for the 6-2 final. 

Video: TBL@LAK: Point one-times Stamkos' dish for PPG

 

They said it

"We want to win every night. We just have that belief no matter what happens. It's not easy to win in this league, but when you have the skill set that we have and then you have the work and the will to get better you can go on stretches like this." -- Lightning forward Steven Stamkos

Video: TBL@LAK: Stamkos nets PPG on one-timer

 

"It seems like it doesn't matter who's on the ice, they are always dangerous. They are a little bit more offensive-minded but they back it up. You want to contain them as much as you can, and we didn't do a good job tonight." -- Kings forward Anze Kopitar

 

Need to know

Kucherov has at least four points in three of his past five games, joining Mario Lemieux (twice), Jaromir Jagr and Nisse Ekman as the only players to accomplish that since 1996-97. … Kucherov has at least one point in 22 of the past 23 games. … Stamkos has 13 points (eight goals, five assists) in his past eight games. … The Lightning have scored at least four goals in 10 of the past 11 games (10-0-1). … Forward Dustin Brown tied Luc Robitaille for the second-most appearances in Kings history by playing in his 1,077th game. Dave Taylor played in a Kings record 1,111 games.

 

What's next

Lightning: At the San Jose Sharks on Saturday (11 p.m. ET; NBCSCA, SUN, NHL.TV)

Kings: Host the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday (10 p.m. ET; CBC, SN, SN360, CITY, FS-W, NHL.TV)

Video: Kucherov, Stamkos power Lightning past Kings, 6-2

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