POST-GAME AUDIO: Includes reaction from Jack Johnson, who signed a seven-year contract extension on January 8.
LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Kings finally snapped their five-game losing streak with a 6-4 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets in front of a sellout crowd of 18,118 fans at Staples Center in Los Angeles on January 8, but showed that they still have a great deal of work to do to cure what ails them.
After taking a 4-0 lead with three goals in the first period and one more early in the second period, the Kings lost their intensity and stopped working hard, allowing the Blue Jackets to takeover the game in the third period.
After getting a fluke goal that was credited to rookie Matt Calvert, the result of Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick fanning on a pass from his crease and allowing the puck to trickle between his skates, the Blue Jackets scored three times and were dominating the game well into the third period.
Kings left wing Ryan Smyth scored at the 16:29 mark to give the Kings a 5-3 lead, only to see Blue Jackets star left wing Rick Nash tie the game with his second goal of the game just 58 seconds after Smyth scored.
The Kings were finally able to exhale after right wing Justin Williams tallied an empty-net, power play goal at 19:29 to seal the win.
Mathieu Garon allowed five goals on 35 shots, taking the loss, while a very shaky Quick, who made a few glaring gaffes in the game, stopped thirty shots to earn the victory.
Immediately following the game, the Kings announced that defenseman Jack Johnson, who contributed three assists in the game, was signed to a seven-year, $30.5 million contract extension.
Financial terms were not disclosed, but it has been learned that Johnson will earn $3.5 million per year in the first three years of the deal, starting in 2011-12. He will then earn $5 million per season in the final four years of the contract.
The deal has an annual salary cap hit of $4.36 million.
- Johnson tied a career high with three assists in the game, the third time he has had three assists in a game. Johnson also has contributed twelve points in the last ten games with two goals and ten assists. He also has tallied 16 points in the last 16 games on three goals and 13 assists.
- Jarret Stoll had his ninth career two-goal game (no hat tricks).
- Smyth has eight points in the last six games on six goals and two assists.
- Drew Doughty has seven points in the last eight games, all assists. He also has contributed 15 points in the last 14 games on a goal and 14 assists.
- Williams has seven points in the last ten games on five goals and two assists.
- Anze Kopitar now has eleven points in the last seven games with a goal and ten assists.
- The Kings have scored fifty goals in the last 14 games, an average of 3.57 per game.
- The Kings have scored a power play goal in 13 of the last 16 games (14-for-47 in the last 14 games, a 29.8 percent rating).
- The Kings are now 20-6-0 when scoring three or more goals in a game. They are also 13-0-0 when leading after two periods.
- The Kings are now 12-4-0 with Willie Mitchell in the lineup and 17-5-1 with Alexei Ponikarovsky in the lineup. Both returned to the lineup after missing time with injuries.
Raw post-game audio interviews
(Edited to remove extraneous material and dead air)
Jack Johnson (3:12)
Anze Kopitar (2:00)
Terry Murray (7:12)
Game Highlights From NHL Video On YouTube
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