Host Tampa Bay on Saturday night to end regular season

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Host Tampa Bay on Saturday night to end regular season

Postby officialsbaseball » 13 Dec 2018, 05:14

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Willie Desjardins was uncertain how much impact he really had on the Los Angeles Kings in his first game behind their bench. The interim coach didn’t alter the lineup from their last game under John Stevens http://www.officialislanders.com/authentic-adidas-mathew-barzal-jersey , and he hasn’t yet implemented any major strategic changes.Whatever or whoever was behind it, the Kings showed more than enough spark to rout their closest rivals.Ilya Kovalchuk had a goal and two assists, and the Kings opened Desjardins’ tenure with a 4-1 win over the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday night.Jack Campbell made 30 saves and picked up his first career assist as the Kings comfortably won the first Freeway Faceoff of the season for these two struggling Southern California rivals.Dustin Brown and Kyle Clifford scored first-period goals for the Kings as they picked right back up from Saturday’s win over Columbus to earn their first back-to-back victories of the season.Desjardins has run just one practice since getting his new job Sunday after the Kings fired Stevens early in his second season in charge. Los Angeles had slumped to the bottom of the overall NHL standings, but the Kings welcomed the new boss with a big win.“It was good to get back,” Desjardins said. “I thought the guys played hard. I thought we didn’t maintain the game as well as we wanted, but the first period was a good start, and we’ll build on that.”The former Vancouver coach’s new players responded with plenty of the passion they often lacked under Stevens, who took the fall along with assistant coach Don Nachbaur for the Kings’ 4-8-1 start. Tyler Toffoli’s empty-net goal clinched LA’s third win in four games following a six-game skid.“It was a wakeup call for everybody,” said Kovalchuk, who has nine points in the last four games. “We’re taking responsibility for what happened, and we’re responding to it. We looked in the mirror, and we all know we can do a better job.”Ryan Kesler scored and John Gibson stopped 23 shots for the injury-wracked Ducks http://www.officialislanders.com/authentic-adidas-nick-leddy-jersey , who have lost eight of nine and earned points in just three games during that span. While the Kings appear to be turning a corner, Anaheim is stuck.“They pushed us, and we had no response,” Kesler said. “Very disappointed in that. We got down 3-0, we had a pretty good second period, and in the third period, we really didn’t muster very much.”Brown got the Kings’ first goal of Desjardins’ tenure when he swatted Kovalchuk’s centering pass out of midair just 6½ minutes in. The goal was Brown’s third in four games since spending the first 10 games of the season sidelined by a broken finger.Clifford scored his second goal of the season later in the opening period, getting alone in front of Gibson for a backhand. Kovalchuk made it 3-0 early in the second, getting his fifth goal on a breakaway set up by a long pass from Campbell.Kesler got the Ducks going with a deflection of Marcus Pettersson’s shot later in the second, but Anaheim didn’t score again.“I didn’t think we had the intensity that was required early in the hockey game,” Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle said. “It took us kind of halfway through the game before we got ourselves awake. Even though we didn’t play to the level we’re capable of, I think it’s a good start for our group.”NOTES: Campbell was Desjardins’ goalie with the AHL’s Texas Stars from 2012-14. … The clubs met for the 138th time. The Kings improved to 61-51-26 in the Freeway Faceoff. … Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf returned to the lineup after missing one game with an upper-body injury http://www.floridapanthersteamshops.com/authentic-james-reimer-jersey , but Anaheim is still without forwards Corey Perry, Ondrej Kase and Nick Ritchie. … Ducks forward Brian Gibbons got hurt in a collision with teammate Andrew Cogliano at the moment Kesler’s goal entered LA’s net. Gibbons bled onto the ice from his face before heading to the dressing room. He returned for the third period.UP NEXTDucks: Host the Calgary Flames on Wednesday night.Kings: Host the Minnesota Wild on Thursday night. PHILADELPHIA (AP) A crucial victory kept the Flyers in control of their own playoff destiny.Jakub Voracek scored with 5:45 left in the third period to lift playoff-chasing Philadelphia over the Carolina Hurricanes 4-3 on Thursday night.Claude Giroux, Ivan Provorov and Michael Raffl also scored for Philadelphia, which began play holding the second and final wild card, four points ahead of Florida. The Flyers would have clinched a playoff spot if Boston beat the Panthers, but Florida topped the Bruins 3-2 later Thursday.Philadelphia can secure a playoff spot in its final regular-season game on Saturday with a victory over the Rangers or an overtime loss. A Florida loss in either of its final two games, Saturday against Buffalo and Sunday at Boston, also would send Philadelphia to the postseason.”We got the job done tonight,” Flyers coach Dave Hakstol said. ”Now we have a big one Saturday afternoon.”The Flyers seemed in great shape when Giroux put them up 3-2 with 9:42 remaining behind a wrist shot that beat goalie Scott Darling. It extended the Flyers captain’s career-high totals to 31 goals and 98 points. Flyers fans shouted ”M-V-P!” `’M-V-P!” when Giroux was shown on the video board following the tally.The Hurricanes erased the lead when Brian Elliott let in his second soft goal of the game, this one Jordan Staal’s backhander from a sharp angle near the side boards with 6:19 left.Elliott returned to work after missing the last 25 games following core muscle surgery on Feb. 13. Elliott, who was injured on Feb. 10, entered 21-11-7 with a 2.72 goals-against average and .908 save percentage this season. He finished with 19 saves.”It’s almost like opening-night jitters again http://www.hurricanesshoponline.com/authentic-jeff-skinner-jersey ,” Elliott said. ”It’s hard to replicate a game in practice.”Voracek scored on a wrist shot from a sharp angle that got past Darling’s left shoulder.It was enough to send the Flyers to victory.”We battled hard, we grinded it out and we played the right way,” Giroux said.Philadelphia’s captain is feeling good about his team’s chances in their final – and most important – game.”We like the way we’re playing right now,” he said. ”Everybody is doing their job, doing what they’re best at. Normally when you do that, you get wins.”Klas Dahlbeck and Sebastian Aho also scored for Carolina, which has lost three straight and four of five. The Hurricanes had already been eliminated from playoff contention.”We got better as the game went on and more competitive as the game went on,” Hurricanes coach Bill Peters said.The Flyers dominated the opening 10 minutes, outshooting Carolina 13-3, but couldn’t get on the board. The Hurricanes finally struck with 6:15 left in the first when Dahlbeck netted his first goal in his 32nd game of the season and just the sixth in his 169-game career.Raffl answered 53 seconds later when he banged home a shot in front after Giroux’s pass was intercepted by Carolina’s Justin Williams but went fortuitously to Raffl in front of the net.The Hurricanes quickly broke the tie when Aho scored on a backhander from a sharp angle to the right of Elliott 14 seconds after Raffl’s tally. The goal was a soft one for Elliott.Philadelphia scored the only goal in the second period when Provorov finished an excellent pass from Sean Couturier right in front of Darling to tie it at 2. The tying score came after some near misses in the period for Philadelphia, as Jori Lehtera hit the post from close range and Voracek missed a golden opportunity from Darling’s doorstep two minutes later.NOTES: Giroux has five goals and 10 assists during a nine-game point streak. … Aho extended his team-leading totals to 29 goals and 65 points. … Couturier and Shayne Gostisbehere each had two assists.UP NEXTHurricanes: Host Tampa Bay on Saturday night to end regular season.Flyers: Host Rangers on Saturday to finish regular season.—
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