NHL Game Summary - Minnesota at Los Angeles|
(Thursday, October 8th)
Final Score: Los Angeles 6, Minnesota 3
Los Angeles, CA (Sports Network) - Ryan Smyth registered two goals and an
assist, and for the second consecutive game Los Angeles watched a comfortable
lead evaporate but recovered to post a 6-3 win over the Minnesota Wild.
Justin Williams and Anze Kopitar both finished with a goal and two helpers for
the Kings, who lost their season opener against Phoenix and blew a 4-0 lead
before holding on to defeat San Jose 6-4 on Tuesday.
Michal Handzus and Teddy Purcell also scored for Los Angeles, and Jonathan
Quick made 26 saves.
Free-agent acquisition Martin Havlat, Nick Schultz and Kim Johnsson lit the
lamp for the Wild, who kicked off a five-game road trip. Josh Harding, making
his first start of the season, stopped 17-of-23 shots in defeat.
The Kings erupted for three goals in the first period.
"The team came out and played real well in the first period, a lot of good
plays, were showing good composure, passing the puck, attacking with a lot of
speed," said Los Angeles head coach Terry Murray.
Smyth opened the scoring 67 seconds into the contest when he tipped Jack
Johnson's wrister from the left point. Williams then scored on another
deflection in front of the net 2:11 later.
Kopitar gave Los Angeles a 3-0 lead with 9:29 remaining when Smyth slid him a
backhander and he snapped a shot past the glove of Harding.
"It wasn't a good period," said Minnesota head coach Todd Richards about the
team's slow start. "We had some guys who just weren't ready for the start of
the game. And you're not going to win a lot of games if you're starting second
periods down by three goals."
Minnesota got on the board via the power play. Andrew Brunette held the puck
behind the net and fed to the slot for Havlat, who fired a wrister over
Quick's glove at 6:30 of the middle stanza.
Handzus restored a three-goal lead for the Kings at 11:02, whipping a shot
between the pads of Harding, but Schultz's marker with the man advantage
made it a 4-2 game with 4:55 remaining in the second period.
Johnsson buried the rebound of a Antti Miettinen shot to draw Minnesota to
within a goal at 6:24 of the third, but Purcell and Smyth scored 36 seconds
apart midway through the period to put the game out of reach.
The Kings have killed off just four of 11 power plays this season...Kopitar
has three goals and five assists in the first three games...The Kings have won
five straight against Minnesota...Los Angeles begins a six-game trek Saturday
in St. Louis...Minnesota visits San Jose on Saturday.
10/09 01:44:05 ET