Saturday, December 16, 2017
Sports

Kings of the road tie playoff record

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Jeff Carter scored three goals, Jonathan Quick stopped 24 shots and the Kings matched an NHL record Tuesday night with their seventh straight road playoff victory, beating the Coyotes 4-0 to take control of the Western Conference final.

Los Angeles dominated the opener and was even better in Game 2, withstanding Phoenix's initial push and string of penalties for a 2-0 series lead.

Dwight King scored his third goal in two games and Quick tied a team record with his third career playoff shutout to give the Kings a dominating lead heading into Thursday's Game 3 in Los Angeles.

The Kings have won nine straight road playoff games in two seasons, matching the NHL record set by the New York Islanders from 1982-83.

The Islanders won the Stanley Cup both of those years.

Quick matched Felix Potvin's team record for playoff shutouts and Carter finished off his first career playoff hat trick in the third period, securing the Kings' seventh straight win overall.

The Coyotes played better early and fell apart late, becoming frustrated after being unable to contain the more-skilled Kings.

Phoenix was hit with a string of penalties starting late in the second period, including a game misconduct to captain Shane Doan for boarding Kings center Trevor Lewis. Martin Hanzal also received one for boarding Dustin Brown in the third period and the Coyotes had 13 penalties for 56 minutes — most coming after the final 5 minutes of the second period.

The Coyotes were aggressive early, winning some of the individual battles they lost in Game 1 while creating some decent scoring chances. Even with all of Phoenix's hard work and a couple of line changes by coach Dave Tippett, the Kings scored first. King got it, redirecting a shot by Drew Doughty that beat Mike Smith stick side late in the period.

Hard work in the corners by Mike Richards set up Los Angeles' second goal, by Carter. He muscled the puck past Smith's glove side as he was going down on a feed from Dustin Penner that made it 2-0 early in the second period.

"I've been working hard in practice to get my game where I wanted it," Carter said.

Brown was sent off for diving on a slash by Smith, but that didn't bother the Kings. Carter scored his second a few seconds later on a redirect of a shot by Anze Kopitar, putting Los Angeles up 3-0.

"It's no secret we've been struggling a bit with the power play and to get some goals will give us confidence on it," Carter said. "We have some pretty skilled guys out there on the power play."

Coyotes defenseman Adrian Aucoin, who missed Game 1 with an undisclosed injury, missed Game 2 as well.

Kings1214
Coyotes0000

First Period1, Los Angeles, King 4 (Doughty, Lewis), 13:15. PenaltiesWhitney, Pho (hooking), 8:53; Gordon, Pho (tripping), 14:30; Penner, LA (tripping), 17:44.

Second Period2, Los Angeles, Carter 2 (Penner, Richards), 4:47. 3, Los Angeles, Carter 3 (Kopitar, Williams), 18:49 (pp). PenaltiesClifford, LA (holding stick), 9:18; Yandle, Pho (roughing), 14:57; Langkow, Pho (slashing), 16:29; Doan, Pho, served by Brule, major-game misconduct (boarding), 16:29; Brown, LA (diving), 18:00; Smith, Pho, served by Korpikoski (slashing), 18:00.

Third Period4, Los Angeles, Carter 4 (Brown, Kopitar), 12:56 (pp). PenaltiesKing, LA (goaltender interference), 3:34; Lewis, LA (tripping), 6:07; Hanzal, Pho, served by Brule, major-game misconduct (boarding), 11:01; Morris, Pho (kneeing), 12:43; Penner, LA, double minor-misconduct (roughing), 13:18; Vermette, Pho, minor-misconduct (roughing), 13:18; Ekman-Larsson, Pho (roughing), 13:18. Shots on GoalLos Angeles 15-17-8—40. Phoenix 8-8-8—24. Power-play opportunitiesLos Angeles 2 of 8; Phoenix 0 of 4. GoaliesLos Angeles, Quick 10-1-0 (24 shots-24 saves). Phoenix, Smith 8-5-0 (40-36). A17,149 (17,135). T2:35.

LIGHTNING LOOKING: Part of the Lightning's summer to-do list is to find a top-six forward. That is why general manager Steve Yzerman, at the world championship in Helsinki, Finland, is keeping a close eye on Swiss forward Damien Brunner.

"Highly skilled and fast," Yzerman wrote in a text message, adding Tampa Bay isn't the only team interested in the 5-foot-11, 187-pound right-handed shot.

Brunner, 26, has three goals, seven points and is plus-2 in seven tournament games. He had 24 goals, 60 points and was plus-17 in 45 games for Zug.

Times staff writer Damian Cristodero contributed to this report.

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