Jeff Carter led the way with a goal and an assist, and goalie Jonathan Quick stopped 25 shots as the Los Angeles Kings beat the visiting Washington Capitals 3-1 on Thursday night.
Washington star Alexander Ovechkin was held off the scoresheet at Staples Center and remains two goals shy of his quest for 600 career markers. The Capitals have dropped their first two games during a three-game road trip through California.
The Kings opened the scoring for the first time in eight games when Carter potted his fourth goal in an injury-shortened season at 15:25 of the first period. After an egregious defensive-zone turnover by Washington’s T.J. Oshie, Alec Martinez sent a long shot that Capitals goalie Philipp Grubauer stopped, but Carter quickly got to the rebound. Grubauer got a piece of the puck but ended up knocking it into the net when he reached back in desperation.
Washington’s Jakub Vrana tied the game at 5:52 of the second period with a goal that showed great hand-eye coordination. Quick stopped Oshie’s shot from the doorstep, but the puck bounded into the air, and that’s when Vrana — who was nearly at the end boards — reached back with his stick to tap it into the cage.
Trevor Lewis, in his first game back after missing a dozen games due to injury, restored the Los Angeles lead at 9:32 of the second stanza with a goal that held up to be the winner. Carter intercepted a pass in the neutral zone and fed Lewis, who was streaking down the wing. Lewis’ first shot was stopped, as was his second, but he batted home the puck on his third attempt.
Kyle Clifford iced it for the Kings — who have won four of five games — with an empty-net goal with 1:18 left in the third period. The Kings have won their last eight home against the Capitals, and they have only one regulation loss in their past 11 home contests.
Grubauer made 26 saves for the Capitals, who failed to convert on back-to-back power plays in the third period when it was still a one-goal game.
—Field Level Media