Kopitar Leads Kings to Victory with Two Goals, Shutting Out Blackhawks

Kopitar Leads Kings to Victory with Two Goals

On Friday at United Center in Chicago, Anze Kopitar netted two of the Los Angeles Kings’ four first-period goals in their 5-0 triumph against the Chicago Blackhawks.

Kopitar Kings Blackhawks

Cam Talbot made 28 saves to record his third shutout of the season and 31st overall for Los Angeles (34-21-11). Alex Laferriere, Jordan Spence and Pierre-Luc Dubois each scored with one assist; Quinton Byfield and Adrian Kempe each provided two.

Jim Hiller of Los Angeles interim coach described it as high stress:… it was great to start strong, but [Talbot] made two or three big saves early that may have turned the game on its axis; credit to Talbot as it may’ve gone differently otherwise.” Talbot made several significant saves early but eventually allowed only three goals against; “it was great seeing [Puck go in for us].” Hiller noted the team had plenty of chances during Wednesday night’s 3-1 loss against St Louis but “we wanted to play similar offensive game just correcting some errors: so it was nice seeing “Puck go in for us”.

Blackhawks vs. Kings Recap

Arvid Soderblom made 10 saves out of 14 shots before giving way to Petr Mrazek at 14:19 in the opening period; Mrazek would finish up making 22 stops himself.

The Blackhawks had won two consecutive games by scoring seven goals each, setting NHL records with 10 shutouts this year and setting one.

Luke Richardson of Chicago described what set apart their opponent as being key: the L.A. Kings played well despite not playing at their peak performance and proved difficult for us to win puck battles against due to being such an intimidating force compared to us.” Richardson noted the L.A. Kings as being both contributors and obstacles against Chicago as they faced off on Thursday afternoon, leading Richardson’s squad into defeat by one goal (6-3).

Talbot saves shutout

Dubois put the Kings ahead early with his power-play goal at 3:10 of the opening period. A shot by Spence from the blue line rebounded off of an end board to Dubois who scored with an easy wrist shot from inside of his left faceoff circle.

Laferriere put La Ferriere up by two goals at 5:33 when she deflected in Matt Roy’s wrist shot from the right point position and deflected it in for an easy goal.

At 8:03, Kopitar made it 3-0 for Los Angeles when he took advantage of Byfield’s cross-ice pass to score from within the right circle on a wrist shot from close range.

NHL Game Highlights

Kopitar scored the fourth goal to put his side ahead 4-0 at 14:19 to chase Soderblom and cut loose Soderblom’s clutch play from earlier. Byfield fed Kopitar with an accurate backhand from the right circle – his goal made 20 in 13 seasons! That puts Kopitar ahead of Marcel Dionne, Luc Robitaille and Dave Taylor for most in King’s history.

“We needed something greater to energize the team than taking Arvid out,” Richardson stated.

At 2:33 of the second period, Los Angeles took an early 5-0 lead with their 55th game when Spence netted his inaugural goal since April 12, 2022, at Chicago (a total of 55 years ago!). Spence took advantage of a rebound below the right circle to bank his shot off Mrazek at the near post for his inaugural goal this season and first since April 12, 2022 (also at Chicago).

“Every game, my mind is always focused on trying to score. However, getting that one done feels great; all my teammates were delighted about my goal!” the defenseman commented.

Source: Twitter.com

Los Angeles Kings victory

“Moving forward, I feel less stressed now that the first matchup has passed; however, we still hope to qualify for playoffs and gain two points this way – in order for me to achieve this, all that remains for me to do is continue doing my job and contribute as best as I can!”
Chicago Blackhawks forward Jason Dickinson acknowledged their disappointment after trailing 4-0 after one period.

“This has happened too many times before,” he noted, “so it should come as no surprise. To try and improve things in the future, we need to find ways to come out strong in the first period and keep the score at 1 or 0-0 or 2 or whatever the case may be in order to give ourselves an opportunity in subsequent periods. After giving away four goals, it becomes nearly impossible.”

Also Read:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *