Game 35; 22-11-2
VANCOUVER — They entered Monday’s game without their leading scorer. Jeff Carter. It didn’t matter in the slightest, though, as the Los Angeles Kings received an abundance of offensive production anyway as they routed the Vancouver Canucks by a 5-0 count.
Tyler Toffoli particularly had a night to remember as he notched a hat-trick en route to Los Angeles’s convincing win.
Toffoli opened the scoring at the 15:33 mark of the first, beating Jacob Markstrom in front to put the Kings in front. Anze Kopitar and Milan Lucic helped out with the assists. The silver-and-black then extended the lead in the opening minutes of the second.
At the 1:57 mark to be exact, defenseman Derek Forbort celebrated his first-career NHL goal as his point shot found its way through traffic and in. Trevor Lewis, who appeared to get a stick on the shot, was credited with the lone assist. Then, exactly 10 minutes later, Brayden McNabb teed up on a point shot that, again, found its way through traffic and in for his second.
Toffoli would then score twice more in the third with the latter coming on the power play.
The hat-trick now gives Toffoli five in his last three games — a stark contrast to the stretch of 19 games prior when he was only able to muster two tallies. Nonetheless, Toffoli was back in a big way on this night, stepping up when he was needed to.
Toffoli, though, wasn’t the only King making noise on this night. Anze Kopitar recorded a staggering four assists in this contest, making it the 13th time in his last 17 games where he has found the scoresheet. Kopitar has 19 points during that stretch.
Of course while he did have plenty of support, Jonathan Quick was no less instrumental in his team’s win on Monday. His 27 saves earned him his third shutout of the season and second in 11 days. More importantly, though, it is the 40th goose-egg of Quick’s career, moving him into a first-place tie with Frank Brimsek and John Vanbiesbrouck for most shutouts by an American-born goaltender. This was certainly the pick-me-up Quick needed.
This game got off on an exciting note as the clubs renewed their rivalry by scrapping with each other multiple times. Once the dust settled, though, the Kings put on a clinic, leaving Rogers Arena eerily quiet.
The win now regains Los Angeles’s nine-point lead in the Pacific and they will hope to extend that right away. Next up are the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday night.