Looking to shake off a three-game skid, the Kings headed into battle against the Seattle Kraken. They fell behind early as Adam Larsson scored his second of the year for Seattle, but Trevor Moore was able to respond and even the score. Los Angeles claimed the lead in the second period as Anze Kopitar found the net on a power play opportunity to make it 2-1. The Kings would remain in the lead as they headed to the final period, but Oliver Bjorkstrand tied things up at two to force overtime. Neither squad was able to get over the hump, and the contest went into a shootout. After 9 long rounds, Carl Grundstrom managed to knock in the game-winner to give the Kings a thrilling victory.
Here are three takeaways from the game:
Kings play some excellent defense
With the Kings on a losing streak of their own, the Kraken presented a perfect opportunity to get back on the right foot. Seattle had lost 8 out of their last 10 games heading into Saturday night, and desperately needed a win for themselves. Los Angeles, however, put their best effort forward on the defensive end. In the first 30 minutes, the Kraken managed just four shot attempts. By the time that things were all said and done, they would have just 19 total shot attempts (tied for their second-lowest total of the season so far). If it were not for Adam Larsson’s first-period goal, things could have looked a lot different in the end. It was a solid performance from goalie Cam Talbot, who saved 17/19 shots and showed amazing effort in the shootout as his clutch stops allowed the Kings to ultimately come out on top. Going forward, this type of scrappy defense and high-effort performance will serve the team well, and hopefully, they can use it to prevent another losing streak any time soon.
Los Angeles survives a thrilling shootout
After neither team was able to find the game-winner in the overtime period, a shootout was called upon to decide who would end up on top. Kailer Yamamoto scored the first goal of the shootout for Seattle, but he was matched by Adrian Kempe to even things up. 7 shot attempts later, the Kraken would reclaim the advantage as Yanni Gourde knocked a goal in past Cam Talbot. Once again, the Kings responded as Arthur Kaliyev nailed a clutch score. Matty Beniers and Trevor Lewis would then trade goals of their own to bring the shootout to 3-3 as it headed to the ninth round. Finally, Carl Grundstrom would call game on a wrist shot that brought him to 2/3 in his career on shootout attempts.
It was an intense battle between two teams who needed a win, and luckily Los Angeles was able to come out on top. After two previous losses against the Hurricanes and Golden Knights earlier this season, Los Angeles finally grabbed their first shootout win of the year.
Moore, Kopitar add another goal each
The two most prominent scorers on the Kings this season were back at it on Saturday night as they played a big part in the team’s victory. Trevor Moore scored and added onto his team-leading pace with goal number 14 on the season to help Los Angeles tie the game in the first period.
Later on in the second period, it would be the captain Anze Kopitar who scored his 12th on the season to put the team out in front for the first time. His 12 goals are currently good for the second most on the team.
The duo’s pair of goals would be good enough to eventually force a shootout, where they would both ironically fail to find the net on their shot attempts. Nonetheless, their contributions this season continue to help the Kings in big ways.
The squad will have a couple of days off before returning to action against the San Jose Sharks. San Jose has had their struggles so far this season, as they hold a record of 9-18-3 (second-worst in the Pacific Division). The game will mark the second of a seven-game stretch against Pacific Division opponents.
Things are scheduled to get going at 7:30 p.m. PT.