Game 80; 47-28-5
CALGARY — This was a wild, back-and-forth affair but in the end, the Los Angeles Kings prevail in overtime, defeating the Calgary Flames 5-4 to finish a perfect 4-0-0 against their Pacific rivals.
After Mikael Backlund opened the scoring for the Flames, Milan Lucic answered just prior to the halfway mark of the first to tie it, netting his 18th from Anze Kopitar and Jake Muzzin. Lucic wasn’t done there, though, as he gave Los Angeles the lead just 14 seconds into the second with Kopitar and Drew Doughty assisting. The Flames, though, tied the game with just over four minutes to go in the frame when Hunter Shinkaruk beat Jhonas Enroth for his second of the year.
In the third, it was Calgary’s turn to score early as just 33 seconds into the frame, Mark Giordano capitalized on the power play to give the home team the lead again. That lead, however, was short-lived as Andy Andreoff tied it just 32 seconds later, beating Joni Ortio.
The score remained tie until late when, with just 4:01 to go in regulation, Deryk Engelland sniped his second the year over Enroth to put Calgary out in front. That appeared to be the end for the Kings but not so fast.
With under a minute to play and Enroth pulled, the Kings pressed. Thanks to a solid effort by Jamie McBain to keep the puck in the offensive zone, Kris Versteeg jumped on a loose puck in front, tucking his 14th past Ortio to tie it and force overtime. Tyler Toffoli was credited with the second assist. After fighting to tie the game in regulation, though, the Kings wasted no time getting to work in overtime.
In the extra frame, there was just one shot and the Kings made it count as Jeff Carter beat Ortio on a breakaway for his 24th to give Los Angeles their franchise-record 47th win of the season while ending their two-game losing streak in the process.
With their win and Anaheim’s overtime loss, the Kings are now tied for first in the Pacific with 99 points. This sets up a very exciting Thursday night matchup between the Kings and the Ducks.