LOS ANGELES — Dustin Brown scored two goals, and Jake Muzzin contributed two assists, to lead the Los Angeles Kings to a 3-1 victory over the Calgary Flames in front of a sell-out crowd of 18,118 fans at Staples Center on March 11.
Brown opened the scoring at 5:39 of the first period, converting a pass by defenseman Slava Voynov, who was at the top of the right circle. Voynov threaded the pass through the right circle, and across the slot to Brown, who had an easy, slam dunk goal at left crease.
Center Jarret Stoll gave the Kings a 2-0 lead at 9:40, taking a pass from Muzzin, who got the puck at left point. Stoll was wide open in the slot, and his wrist shot beat Flames goaltender Joey MacDonald top shelf, knocking the water bottle off the net.
After a fairly evenly played second period in which neither team scored, the Flames put on a big push in the third period, while the Kings appeared to try to sit on their 2-0 lead, playing a prevent defense.
The Flames eventually capitalized, with center Mikael Backlund scoring from the bottom of the right circle after flying past Kings defenseman Alec Martinez, who got caught flat-footed on the play. Backlund’s wrist shot beat Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick through the five-hole at 14:38.
The Flames pulled MacDonald for the extra attacker, but Brown got the puck along the right wing boards in the Calgary zone and wristed it into the gaping net at the 19:33 mark, giving the Kings their final margin of victory.
MacDonald stopped 19 shots in the loss. Quick made 23 saves to earn his ninth win of the season.
Post-Game Quotes from the Flames Dressing Room:
Calgary Head Coach Bob Hartley:
“They put us on our heels. We regrouped after the first period. We felt like we played much better the last 40 minutes. You can’t fault the effort. The effort is there. It’s a couple of reads. You look at their first goal. Brown gets the puck by himself beside the net. We all know who is supposed to cover that area. No one does it on purpose.”
“After this, obviously when you lose a couple of games in a row you start to lose your confidence and suddenly woop you’re not ready for the next shift and the first thing you know it’s 2-0. That’s what happened to us. We bounced back after the second. Those first two goals had no reason to be there.”
(Regarding Backlund’s return): “Backlund, I felt, his first game against the Kings two nights ago was rusty. It’s perfectly understandable. He’s a good worker. I think he’s going to do fine for us. He was progressing tonight. You can tell his game was getting stronger and he scored a big goal for us.”
Calgary Forward Jarome Iginla:
(About the toll from their road trip/schedule): “I think the schedule is fine. I think we just got out-competed and outplayed. The toll is we just dropped three games on the trip. We have fallen way back. There are no excuses regarding the schedule.”
(Regarding adjustments from last game): “The first period, they outplayed us. I thought the second and third we brought our competition level up and we played a lot better, but we didn’t get it done. We didn’t play a full three [periods] in any game this trip.”
“We look at ourselves, we all want to be in playoffs. We’re not getting it done. We were playing well before we went on this road trip. We got out-battled, outplayed. We had stretches in each game, but it’s the old saying ‘it’s there,’ and we didn’t find a way to win these games. This is a big step in the wrong direction. This road trip definitely put us a ways back.”
Calgary Forward Mikael Backlund:
(Regarding the difference between this game and the last game against the Kings): “We worked hard. I thought our effort was significantly better than last game. Last game we played pretty good in the first and not so good in the second and third. Today was vice versa: bad first and then come back and played hard. We have to find a way to win. If we want to win we have to play hard for 60 minutes and be a consistent team. There can’t be any setbacks like on this road trip.”
(About how he feels to back on the ice): “It feels better. I felt a little lost the first game. I wasn’t involved enough. I was skating around too much and not taking charge. Today I was trying to be more involved in the game and handle the puck more. It was first game back last game; I was really nervous. It felt like it was my first NHL game again. It feels good having two games now. I felt way better today and competed harder.”
- The Kings have now won nine of their last eleven games, outscoring opponents 41-24. They have also won eleven of their last 14 games, outscoring opponents 49-29.
- The Kings have won eight of their last nine games at home.
- The Kings’ 9-2-1 home record is tied for the fourth-best twelve-game start at home in club history. Their best twelve-game start at home is 11-1-0 in 1992-93.
- The Kings are now 9-1-1 when scoring first.
- The Kings are now 95-1-10 in their last 106 games when leading after two periods (since April 4, 2009).
- Muzzin has eight points in his last eight games (four goals, four assists). He also has a +8 plus/minus rating in the last five games.
- Voynov has eight points in the last five games (goal, seven assists).
- Brown has four points in the last four games (two goals, two assists).
- Drew Doughty had seven hits in the game.
- The Kings swept the season series from Calgary, 3-0. The last only other time the Kings swept a season series from Calgary was 1999-00 (4-0-0).
- The Kings finished their five-game home stand 4-1-0, tied for the third-best five-game home stand in club history. They’ve gone 4-1-0 six other times and 5-0-0 twice.
Frozen Royalty Video via FrozenRoyaltyNHL on YouTube – Interviews From Dallas Stars vs. Los Angeles Kings, March 7, 2013
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Post-Game Interviews via KingsVision On YouTube
Game Highlights From KingsVision: Calgary Flames vs. Los Angeles Kings, March 11, 2013, Staples Center, Los Angeles, California
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