Graphic by Ryan Leopando – Arch City Sports
Staples Center Los Angeles, CA – It was a penalty filled game tonight in Los Angeles, as the Kings topped the St. Louis Blues 6-4 at Staples Center to split the home and home series.
The first period had eight penalties and the Blues were able to capitalize on two of their four power plays in the opening period. At 13:12, Jay Bouwmeester took a shot from the blue line that was redirected by David Backes for his eighth of the year to give the Blues a 1-0 lead. Just over a minute later, Petteri Lindbohm sent another shot from the point and Dmitrij Jaskin got his second of the year by tipping it just past Jonathan Quick. Shortly after, Drew Doughty was sent to the penalty box for slashing Steve Ott and Kevin Shattenkirk responded with a power play goal on a slap shot from the circle at 16:00 for a 3-0 lead. Los Angeles finally got on the board with a power play goal of their own from Marian Gaborik at 17:45 off of a rebound that bounced to the right of the net and Gaborik dove to knock it in for his eighth of the year.
The physical play continued in the second period and Anze Kopitar got the puck past Martin Brodeur at 6:14 for his seventh goal of the season. Despite letting up six goals, Brodeur made some key saves, one being on Jake Muzzin shortly after the Kings made it a 3-2 game. But he couldn’t stop Gaborik while the Kings were on yet another power play when he scored his second of the game at 15:41. During this home and home series, Gaborik has four goals against the Blues. But quickly after the goal, Jori Lehtera and Vladimir Tarasenko were in transition through the neutral zone and had a nice give and go as Lehtera got a backhander past Quick to the far side to give the Blues the lead back at 16:17.
It was all Kings in the third period as they scored three unanswered. Only 0:20 seconds into the period, LA had an odd man rush when Bouwmeester couldn’t keep the puck in the offensive zone. Anze Kopitar grabbed the puck and raced up the side where he found Jeff Carter to tie the game 4-4. Both Brodeur and Quick made some big saves, two at point blank range. But penalties were common tonight for the Blues, as Ryan Reaves was sent off for an interference call on Jarret Stoll and Jake Muzzin scored on the power play to give LA the lead for good at 8:58. Shortly after, Brodeur made a save but time was called as neither him nor the referees could find the puck in his equipment. After a few minutes Brodeur finally had to skate over to the Blues bench where they finally were able to retrieve the puck from his pads. The scoring was capped off at 12:06 by an unfortunate last second bounce from the puck when Dwight King sent in what looked like a normal dump in attempt. But, just as Brodeur squared up in front of the puck, it took an odd bounce straight up and over his shoulder into net.
Jaden Schwartz missed his first game of the year. He took a shot off of his right foot in their matchup on Tuesday night. Steve Ott replaced Schwartz on the STL Line for the night.
Shots On Goal: LA 37, STL 28
Saves: Quick 24. Brodeur 31