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In their first road game of the season, Kings lose to St. Louis Blues

The St. Louis Blues' Oskar Sundqvist, right, pressures the Kings' Lias Andersson during the first period Jan. 23, 2021.
The St. Louis Blues’ Oskar Sundqvist, right, pressures the Kings’ Lias Andersson during the first period Saturday night. The Blues won 4-2.
(Joe Puetz / Associated Press)

Torey Krug scored his first goal with St. Louis and David Perron added a goal and an assist, lifting the Blues to a 4-2 victory Saturday night over the Kings.

Adrian Kempe and Dustin Brown scored for the Kings (1-2-2), who were playing in their first road game of the season. Vince Dunn and Jaden Schwartz scored the other goals for St. Louis (3-1-1).

Jordan Binnington has started all five games for the Blues. He stopped 21 shots.

Kings backup goalie Cal Petersen made his second start of the season and stopped 25 shots. The Kings were coming off a 4-2 win over the Colorado Avalanche on Thursday night.

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St. Louis recorded its first power-play goal of the season when the 29-year-old Krug scored at 13:12 of the first period. Krug, who signed a seven-year deal as a free agent in October after playing seven full seasons for Boston, scored on a one-timer from the point. Assisting on the goal were Perron and Ryan O’Reilly. It was O’Reilly’s 100th assist as a member of the Blues.

Kings use reliable goaltending, a revitalized power play and relentless even-strength forechecking to overcome a two-goal deficit against Colorado.

“Those guys worked hard to recover pucks that whole shift, and I think we bobbled it a few times, but they recovered it, made the right plays, and Schwartz did the dirty work down in front of the net,” Krug said. “All the credit for the goal goes to those guys.”

Krug filled the void left by defenseman Alex Pietrangelo, who signed a seven-year, $61.6-million contract with the Vegas Golden Knights

St. Louis entered the game having not scored a power-play goal in its previous 14 chances this season. However, the Blues’ power play had gone five for its last six against the Kings entering the game.

“Obviously, our power play was not catching any breaks there,” Krug said. “We need to work a little bit harder, and hopefully now that we’ve got one, the floodgates will open and we’ll feel the confidence to continue to work.”

Kings backup goalie Cal Petersen defends the net against the St. Louis Blues' Tyler Bozak (21) during the third period.
Kings backup goalie Cal Petersen defends against the Blues’ Tyler Bozak in the third period. Petersen made his second start of the season and stopped 25 shots.
(Joe Puetz / Associated Press)

Each team scored twice in the second period.

The Kings tied the game at 1-all just 57 seconds into the period. Kempe scored his third goal on a slap shot from the top of the left circle.

St. Louis came back with two goals to take a 3-1 lead. Dunn snapped in a wrist shot from the top of the slot at 2:53 for his first goal. Perron hit a wrist shot at 7:25 from the crease after getting a nifty no-look backhand pass from Robert Thomas, who also assisted on Dunn’s goal.

“It was a nice play for sure,” said Perron, who scored his first goal. “Games pile up, and you start thinking about it a little bit. This one went in, so it was nice.”

The Kings enjoyed a two-man advantage and pulled within a goal at 3-2 when Brown pushed in the puck from the side of the net at 16:29 for a power-play goal.

But the Kings would get no closer.

“St. Louis is not a team you want to come from behind against,” Kings coach Todd McLellan said. “This team can lock it down. It’s very comfortable playing with a lead. They give up very few chances and defend well.”

The Kings had five power-play opportunities.

Highlights from the Kings’ 4-2 road loss to the St. Louis Blues on Saturday night.

“I don’t want to talk about penalties,” St. Louis coach Craig Berube. “It causes a lot of problems. I liked the third period for the most part. We played a smart third period. I’d like to get that next goal. I think we are just a little tentative at times.”

Schwartz added an empty-net goal at 19:58.

The Blues have won four straight against the Kings, outscoring them 16-5.

Defenseman Robert Bortuzzo (upper-body) remains out of action for St. Louis. The Blues did get back defenseman Marco Scandella, who missed one game with an upper-body injury. For the Kings, left wing Matt Luff (undisclosed injury) remains day to day, while right wing Martin Frk (lower-body injury) and center Alex Turcotte (lower-body injury) remain week to week.

The Kings and Blues will conclude their two-game series Sunday night in St. Louis.


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