VANCOUVER, Canada — There were fights. Thunderous hits. Superb goaltending. Fine penalty killing. A dramatic late rally.
And a lot of relief on the Kings' part Monday as they skated off with a 3-2 overtime victory over the Vancouver Canucks.
Despite being outplayed and outshot, 28-8, in the second and third periods combined, the Kings pulled even with 2 minutes and 54 seconds left in the third and stunned the crowd at Rogers Arena when Anze Kopitar rifled home a feed from Slava Voynov 48 seconds into overtime.
Not that Kopitar needed to audition for the Slovenian Olympic hockey team — his father, Matjaz, will be the coach at the Sochi Games — but it was an exclamation point to an unlikely comeback by the Kings on the first game of their annual fathers-and-brothers trip. Matjaz Kopitar was at the game, beaming proudly, with the other family members. He had good reason to be happy after the Kings extended their streak of standings points to 10 games
"You've got to scrape and claw for points, and that's what we did tonight," said Richards, whose father, Norm, got to see him take a passout from Jeff Carter and bring the Kings even with a quick shot past Roberto Luongo.
"It wasn't the prettiest on our part — we took too many penalties and turned some pucks over — but two points is what we wanted."
Carter had been activated off injured reserve Monday afternoon and played for the first time since he injured his foot on Oct. 30. To make room for Carter on the roster, the Kings put goaltender Jonathan Quick on injured reserve, retroactive to Nov. 12. Quick, who has a Grade 2 groin strain, isn't expected to return until sometime around Christmas.
Ben Scrivens made 37 saves in goal and has stopped 187 of 196 shots over his last seven starts.
"He's playing extremely well," Richards said. "That's the understatement of the century."
Rugged winger Kyle Clifford gave the Kings a 1-0 lead at 13:50 of the first period, breaking in with Linden Vey on a two-on-one and finishing it by slipping a backhander past Luongo.
The Canucks tied it at 17:04 of the second on a long shot by Chris Tanev and went ahead, 2-1, at 6:59 of the third period. Henrik Sedin pounced on a loose puck after a shot by his brother, Daniel, had been blocked on the way to the net. Henrik put it past Scrivens during a power play, the only time the Kings' penalty killers bent in eight disadvantages.
Richards sent it to overtime, where the Kings took advantage when a Canucks defenseman overskated the puck, leaving it for Voynov to pounce on and pass to Kopitar.
"I happened to be in the middle of the ice, in front of the net. He gave it to me, I closed my eyes. Shot," Kopitar said.
He didn't really close his eyes. It just sounded better when he told the story that way. But not as good as Scrivens' goaltending was.
"He's making the big saves at the big times of the game to keep us really involved," Kopitar said. "He's making the saves to keep us within striking distance and giving us some time to find our game."
They found it just in time on Monday.
"It got a little chippy in the second period. We didn't have the best second period but we stuck with it," Kopitar said. "We got a late one and obviously you don't want to give away points but we got the two that we wanted."