Williams' reputation as a clutch player is well-known, thanks to his most-valuable-player performance last spring in the Kings' second
"We wanted to win for the two points, obviously, but really for our psyche, that it's not that hard to do, to show up and play the right way," Williams said.
"We're making steps. We're making strides. We're going in the right direction and we want to start something special here and start playing the right way, and hopefully this can jump-start it."
Brown said it was important for the Kings to stop a bad road habit before it became entrenched. "Historically speaking, this group of players has, from time to time, let it slip. You lose one, you lose two, it's trying not to lose the third one," he said. "At the end of the day it's about trying to stop a streak from starting."
The Kings were commanding against the Wild, which had lost only one of its previous eight home games. The Kings' defense was physical and steady and the forwards helped defensively too.
Offensively, they were opportunistic and good, chasing Wild starting goalie Darcy Kuemper after one period and triggering boos from a savvy crowd that knows a bad performance when it sees one.
Two of the four goals resulted from two-on-one breaks. "I think part of it was how we defended our blue line," Brown said. "A couple mistakes on their part, not getting it by our blue line, allowed us to get those odd-man rushes."
Richards began the spree by deflecting a sharp-angled shot by
The third goal also was well executed. Toffoli, speeding up the left side with
Williams extended his points streak to six games when he took a pass from Brown and rifled a shot home from the high slot. He has four goals and seven points in that span.
Supporting all this was Jones, who earned his first shutout since April 10. He hadn't made two starts in a row since last December and hadn't started on back-to-back nights since last Dec. 10-11.
He said he was "a little bit" surprised when told he'd start Wednesday but wasn't about to argue. "I don't know what the decision making was, but I was ready to go when my name was called," said Jones, who had stopped five of six shootout attempts in a 4-3 loss at Nashville on Tuesday.
"It was a good first period. We did a good job capitalizing on our scoring chances, and after that we did a really good job checking them. On both sides of the puck we did a really good job. It was a good 60-minute effort."
Sutter also said he hadn't been concerned about the team's lackluster road record because it included four overtime or shootout losses. "It all comes around," he said.
On Wednesday, it came around just as Williams had said it would.