The LA Kings Capitalize On Weak Washington Play


The Los Angeles Kings (25-18-12) got some revenge on the Washington Capitals (29-17-10) as they beat the fourth best team in the Metropolitan Division 3-1 at Staples Center. LA faced another “must win” game as they try to get back into the playoff picture after a depressing January. So far, so good.

67. 1. 19. Final. 3

Nothing happened in the first period as it was 0-0 at the first intermission. The Kings won the shot battle 14-8, so that was alright, but it was in the second period when things got interesting.

Los Angeles Kings
Los Angeles Kings /

Los Angeles Kings

Dwight King scored on a scramble in front of the net. Jeff Carter started things off when he sent a pass from behind the net to Tyler Toffoli who shot it in from the slot. The attempt missed but bounced to the right of Washington goalie Braden Holtby. King was in th right place at the right time behind Holtby to sweep the puck into the net. LA went up 1-0.

Then the 3rd period happened and oh boy was it a beauty!

The Kings increased the lead 17 seconds in when LA took control of an early Capitals attack. Drew Doughty sent a cross-ice pass to Marian Gaborik who streaked down the left side of the ice. Gaborik held the puck and waited for the perfect time to get the edge on the defender before he sent it in to Trevor Lewis who had a beauty of a cross over that beat Holtby to finish with an open net. It was 2-0 LA.

The Kings had a chance to increase the lead half a minute later when Brooks Laich was called for high-sticking on Jake Muzzin. Unfortunately, at 1:34, Doughty was called for hooking, his second penalty of the night. On the ensuing power play, the Caps found a way back in when Evgeny Kuznetsov brought the puck down into the attacking zone on the right side and with the focus on him, sent the puck to an open Alexander Ovechkin in the right circle who sent a one-timer off the post past Jonathan Quick. Just like that, Washington was back in it, 2-1.

But it did not stay that way.

After a battle of a 3rd period, at 12:51, the Kings made something out of nothing when they routinely brought the puck into their attacking zone. Justin Williams had taken the puck in and dropped it off to Dustin Brown who threw the puck in front of the net through traffic where Jarret Stoll was able to redirect it and send it in on the right side of Holtby. Boom! It was 3-1 Kings and that was how it eneded.

Washington attempt a late aggressive push when they pulled their goalie with nearly three minutes remaining, but got nothing from it. That was it. Four wins in a row for LA (the first since late October) and now it seems as though LA is back in the playoff hunt. But that is a given for the Kings in February.

Go Kings Go.