Kings defeat visiting Ottawa Senators, ending L.A.'s losing streak at five
Carl Grundstrom scored twice to help the Kings beat the Ottawa Senators 4-2 on Saturday at Staples Center.
Viktor Arvidsson had a power-play goal and Arthur Kaliyev also scored to help the Kings end a five-game losing streak. Cal Petersen made 30 saves, and Anze Kopitar had three assists.
“We were desperate for a win, and wins help no matter how you get them. I thought we played a fairly solid game there,” Kings coach Todd McLellan said.
Filip Gustavsson gave up three goals on 36 shots and Connor Brown and Michael Del Zotto scored for the Senators, who lost their fifth straight game. Ottawa is 1-7-1 on the road, including five defeats in regulation in a row.
“Everybody’s got to play for each other,” Senators forward Nick Paul said. “The only people that are getting out of this is us, so we got to find a way here, and there’s no more excuses. We just got to get it done.”
Kaliyev netted his fourth goal of the season to push the Kings’ lead to 3-1 with 6:46 left in the second period, finding himself alone at the right post to send in a pass by Alex Edler.
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But Brown scored off the rush, getting the Senators back within a goal with 1:27 remaining in the period.
The Kings had to withstand a five-minute power play in the third after Brendan Lemieux received a match penalty during a confrontation with Brady Tkachuk that had them grappling from the clinch on the ice. Tkachuk indicated that Lemieux bit him on the hand.
McLellan said Lemieux, who has become a staple on the fourth line, needs to be careful not to cross the line in instances like his fracas with Tkachuk and expressed concern it could result in a suspension.
“We need him playing every night,” McLellan said. “We need him playing every minute that he gets. Offensively, defensively, physically, emotionally. And if we happen to lose him for any period of time, we’ll miss him. And he has to understand how important he’s become.”
Grundstrom, who served the penalty, came out of the box to score an empty-netter with 33.9 seconds remaining.
“I thought when ‘Grunny’ got his opportunity to go, he made good on his shift. And he seemed to be playing with some energy,” McLellan said.
The Kings started the scoring with Arvidsson’s fourth goal. He tipped in a pass by Kopitar on the power play 4:59 into the game.
Del Zotto tied it at 1 with 18.9 seconds left in the first. Josh Norris won the faceoff and got it back to Del Zotto, who fired a shot that deflected in off the stick of Kings forward Alex Iafallo.
Grundstrom put the Kings back ahead 2-1 midway through the second period, barreling into Gustavsson as the puck crossed the line. Officials decided the contact happened because Zach Sanford forcibly sent Grundstrom into the goalie, confirming his fourth goal after a brief conversation.
Kopitar got his fifth multipoint game of the season. It was the 250th such game in his career, which ranks fifth in the league since he made his NHL debut in 2006.
Up next, the Kings host the Ducks on Tuesday night.
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