The LA Kings skated to a third consecutive victory, coming by a 4-2 margin against the St. Louis Blues on Saturday evening at Crypto.com Arena.
The Kings got goals from Kevin Fiala, Carl Grundstrom, Adrian Kempe and Gabriel Vilardi in the victory, with Fiala (1-1-2) and defenseman Drew Doughty (0-2-2) each posting multi-point nights. Goaltender Joonas Korpisalo recorded his first victory in a Kings jersey with 24 saves between the pipes.
The hosts opened the scoring just over three minutes into the game through Grundstrom, who scored his first goal since returning from injury to get the Kings on the board. Defenseman Matt Roy sent a shot through from the point, with Grundstrom getting the deflection just outside the crease for his seventh goal of the season and a 1-0 advantage.
St. Louis equalized in the final two minutes of the opening period, however, to take a 1-1 score into the first intermission. Korpisalo made the initial save on a shot from forward Pavel Buchnevich, but the rebound went past a Kings stick in the slot right to forward Robert Thomas, who buried the game-tying goal.
A highlight-reel play put the Kings ahead with the lone goal of the second period. Forward Quinton Byfield flipped the puck high in the air, over everyone, to spring Kempe on a breakaway. The Kings forward shielded his defenseman to create a bit of space and shot high blocker, past a pokechecking Jordan Binnington, to put the hosts back ahead.
The Blues tied the game midway through the third period with a shorthanded goal, equalizing things at two goals apiece. St. Louis forward Kasperi Kapanen picked off a pass in his own zone, skated the length of the ice on a breakaway and snapped his shot past Korpisalo on the glove side for his ninth goal of the season.
The power-play answered for the Kings, however, with the game-winning goal just shy of three minutes from the final buzzer. After he was denied on his first attempt, Vilardi made a nifty move in a tight space, deking to the backhand for the go-ahead goal. The marker was his third in as many games pushing the advantage to 3-2.
Fiala iced the game inside two minutes to play with an empty-net goal.
Hear from Korpisalo, Roy and Head Coach Todd McLellan following tonight’s win.
On the differences between playing with a left-shot partner versus a right-shot partner
I’m not sure really, [Gavrikov] and Durz are completely different players. They both bring different aspects to the game, in a positive way. It was nice playing with Gav today, he seems like a quiet player in a good way, he’s always in position, he’s always doing the right things, he’s got a great stick. He just kind of makes it easy to play with.
On partnering Gavrikov, who is a “like-minded” player
Yeah, I think so. I’m still learning about him as a player, but he was not afraid to jump in the rush just like I am and he focuses…
Read More: FINAL – Kings 4, Blues 2 – Korpisalo, Roy, McLellan 2023-03-05 07:37:36