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Field Level Media - Professional sports content solutions | FLM

Mar 26, 2024 12:02 am

Kings slow Canucks’ division push with narrow win

Kings, Canucks

Anze Kopitar and Blake Lizotte scored just 1:51 apart late in the second period as the visiting Los Angeles Kings won their fourth straight game with a 3-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Monday.

The Kings’ playoff push gathered steam as they played the role of spoiler against the Western Conference-leading Canucks.

Vancouver (45-19-8, 98 points) could have become the first team in the league to punch their ticket to the postseason with a win.

The Canucks needed to beat the Kings (38-22-11, 87 points) and have Vegas beat St. Louis in the only other game of the night to clinch. The Golden Knights won 2-1 in overtime, but the Canucks couldn’t get the job done in the seventh game of a season-long nine-game homestand.

Kevin Fiala also scored and goalie Cam Talbot made 21 saves for the Kings, who kicked opened a four-game road trip by moving to within one point of the Edmonton Oilers for second place in the Pacific Division.

Sam Lafferty and Brock Boeser scored and Casey DeSmith stopped 16 shots for the Canucks, who are trying to lock down their first division title since 2013.

Fiala opened the scoring 7:01 into the first as the Kings took advantage of a neutral-zone turnover and bad line change by the Canucks. Fiala took a pass from Pierre-Luc Dubois and snapped home his 24th goal of the season.

Lafferty tied it 1-1 at 12:50 of the first on a superb individual effort. Lafferty came off the side boards and drove to the net where he split the defense. He showed veteran poise by waiting for goalie Talbot to go down and then tucked it in the corner.

The Kings then scored two quick goals late second period to break the 1-1 deadlock.

Lizotte scored a goal at 16:29 to make it 2-1 for the Kings. His shot from the right side ricocheted off both skates of Canucks defenseman Carson Soucy and slipped past goalie DeSmith, who was screened by Trevor Lewis.

Soon after that, Kopitar circled the net during a wild scramble in front of the net. The puck squirted loose, allowing him to tuck it into the open side with just 1:40 left in the period.

Boeser rounded out the scoring with a third-period marker but the Canucks’ late rally fell short.

–Field Level Media

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