Jonathan Quick got the starting nod in net for Kings against the Dallas Stars, one night after dropping a tough one in Chicago the night before. Quick began the game having won 4 of the 5 games he had started in this young season, and thanks to two second period goals scored by Alexei Ponikarovsky and Wayne Simmonds scored 9 seconds apart, he would win his fifth.
The Kings offense got started early with a 5 on 3 power play goal by team captain Dustin Brown but Brad Richards of the Dallas Stars would knot the game at one late in the first with a 5 on 3 power play goal of his own.
Early into the second period, Ponikarovsky would bang in a rebound to regain the lead and Simmonds would cushion the lead nine seconds later with a break away goal of his own. Simmonds would later left the game with an undisclosed lower-body injury.
Willie Michell’s shorthanded goal early in the third increased the Kings lead to 4-1. Brandon Segal scored for the Stars but an empty net goal by Justin Williams with 1:41 remaining would clinch the victory for LA.
Jack Johnson assisted on 3 of the Kings 5 goals and has really stepped up offensively in Drew Doughty’s absence. Rookie Jake Muzzin was penciled into the third line defensive line and fellow rookies Brayden Schenn and Kevin Westgarth would replaced Andrei Loktionov and Trevor Lewis on the fourth line.
After allowing 4 Kings goals in 15 shots, Dallas goaltender Kari Lehtonen was pulled in favor of back up Andrew Raycroft. Raycroft would finish the game and spot 9 of 9 shots faced. The attendance at American Airlines Center was announced at 11,306, the smallest crowd the Stars have seen since moving to Dallas in 1993, but only an estimated 5,000 were actually in attendance. The low numbers were expected since the Texas Rangers played Game 2 of the World Series that night.
This game also marked the end of a 5-game road trip for the Kings. The Kings finished 3-2 on the trip and are now 7-3-0 on the season and are currently in first place in the NHL with 14 points.
Saturday the Kings start a 5-game home stand beginning with the Illya Kovalchuck and the New Jersey Devils. The home stand also includes visits from the Steve Stamkos and the Lightning, the red-hot Nashville Predators, a Stars rematch and concluding with the New York Islanders on Saturday, November 13.
Three Stars of the Game:
1st: Jonathan Quick
2nd: Jack Johnson
3rd: Wayne Simmonds