The Staples Center deejay played “Don’t Do Me Like That” in an obvious tribute to Tom Petty. Organist Dieter Ruehle tickled out “Running Down A Dream.”
The Kings also went with one of their greatest hits.
A lot of new faces were unveiled in their season opener, but goalie Jonathan Quick reminded everyone that he’s still the Kings’ lead singer. In a welcome contrast to last season’s disastrous opener, Quick made 35 saves in a 2-0 win against the Philadelphia Flyers.
“He’s unbelievable,” Trevor Lewis said of Quick. “He made a couple of highlight reel saves there again. He does it every night. We see it every day in practice. It’s almost like you kind of get used it. It’s nice to have him back.”
Lewis scored in the second period and Tyler Toffoli in the third as the Kings got the 2017-18 season off to a victorious start under new coach John Stevens.
They did it the hard way. Pinned in their end, the Kings were outshot 17-5 in the third period and killed two of the five Flyers power plays on the night. It was a year ago that Quick suffered a serious groin injury in San Jose to set in motion a drama-filled season that did not result in a playoff berth.
Better vibes marked this opener, after the Kings muddled through a start against a Philadelphia team that looked more organized following its season-opening win Wednesday in San Jose.
The Kings’ breakthrough came from their fourth line. Kyle Clifford dropped a pass to Nick Shore and Shore spotted Lewis driving down center ice. Lewis one-timed Shore’s pass and the announced crowd of 18, 230 fans did their first goal celebration of the season.
Toffoli converted a two-on-one with Jeff Carter with 2:21 remaining. It was the icing on Quick’s 45th career shutout.
“That’s the way he plays every night,” Toffoli said. “It was good that we could score a couple of goals for him.”
Three Kings made their NHL debut in left wing Alex Iafallo and defensemen Kurtis MacDermid and Oscar Fantenberg, who were paired together.
Iafallo played on the top line with Anze Kopitar and Dustin Brown and made a pretty saucer pass over a defender’s stick to set up Kopitar late in the first period.
MacDermid was inserted after the Kings took a surprise hit to their lineup before the game when defenseman Alec Martinez was put on injured reserve with a lower-body injury, the team announced. He must sit out at least one week retroactive to Oct. 3. Stevens said he did not think the injury was serious. Martinez participated in all of training camp and skated Wednesday.
“He’s a big part of our team, no question,” Stevens said of Martinez. “But I don’t think it’s going to be long term and we’re going to need someone else step up in his absence.”
Martinez is usually partnered with Jake Muzzin, and the Kings adjusted with Muzzin paired with Christian Folin. Fantenberg took Martinez’s spot on the second-unit power play. Defenseman Paul LaDue was recalled from the Kings’ Ontario affiliate.
The opening-night festivities struck a serious tone when, after the pregame player introductions and light show, there was a moment of silence for Kings employee Christiana Duarte, among the victims in the Las Vegas mass shooting. Pia Toscano wore a “Chrissy” No. 1 Kings jersey as she sang the national anthem. .
Then the puck dropped with the good spirits of a fresh season with Stevens.
“I think everyone’s excited,” Lewis said. “We know the past couple of years, we haven’t been very good, so I think everyone’s up for the challenge.”