Kings 4, Calgary Flames 3 (SO)
Eight keys to the game:
THE FACTS: The Kings couldn’t take advantage of their first four chances to move back into a playoff spot, but Justin Williams didn’t let the fifth opportunity go to waste, scoring in the seventh round of the shootout at Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary to lift the Kings back into eighth place in the Western Conference standings.
THE STAT: The Calgary Stampede is over now that the Kings ended a 10-game losing streak at Scotiabank Saddledome, which tied their longest road losing streak against any opponent in franchise history.
TURNING POINT: Both teams scored in the first two rounds of the shootout. Olli Jokinen then tried for three in a row for the Flames, but Kings goalie Jonathan Quick deflected the shot with his outstretched right toe, sending the puck off the post and back off Quick’s shoulder. The Kings then missed four straight winners, but each time Quick answered with a stop on the other end.
HOT: Williams had a goal and two assists in regulation, then took advantage of a rare chance to participate in the shootout by scoring on a quick wrist shot over the right pad of Calgary goalie Mikka Kiprusoff for the skate-off goal. It was his first three-point game since Dec. 3, 2009.
NOT: Kings coach Terry Murray reshuffled the shootout by putting Michal Handzus and Jarret Stoll in the first three. They made their attempts, but Anze Kopitar, Jack Johnson and Dustin Brown failed to convert theirs for the third time in the last four games. Drew Doughty also failed to score before Williams took his turn.
GOOD MOVE: Kopitar, Johnson, Brown and Doughty tried to be too cute on their shootout attempts but Handzus, Stoll and Williams simply beat Kiprusoff with quick shots up high in the net.
BAD MOVE: Andrei Loktionov made a great play to give the Kings a 3-2 lead in the second period, chasing down the puck in the offensive zone, skating into space and firing a shot at Kiprusoff that was deflected to Williams who poked it into the net. Murray then sat the rookie forward for much of the third period, instead moving Handzus up to the top line.
NOTABLE: Calgary came into the game as the hottest team in the NHL, riding a six-game winning streak and 8-1-1 in its last 10 games. The Kings are 5-0-1 in their last six.
UP NEXT: at Pittsburgh, Thursday, 4 p.m. PT.