VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- Sean Burke's first full game back in the NHL helped Los Angeles coach Marc Crawford win in his return to Vancouver.
Alexander Frolov scored his second goal of the game 1:48 into overtime, and Burke stopped 37 shots to lift the Kings to a 3-2 win over the Canucks on Friday night.
It was Crawford's first game against against the team that fired him last summer after parts of eight seasons in Vancouver.
"You don't want to make too much out of it, but sure, it's nice to win here," Crawford said. "You see lots of familiar faces and lots of friends and now they're our new foes so it's kind of neat. They've had some great success this year and we haven't, so from that standpoint it's always nice when you can one-up them."
Patrick O'Sullivan also scored and rookie Anze Kopitar added two assists for the Kings, who ended their seven-game losing streak by beating a Vancouver team that won 10 of 12 before the All-Star break.
"We would have taken a win against Vancouver College boys team," Crawford said, "but beating the Canucks, who have played so well, especially here, and in overtime, where they've been almost unbeatable, is pretty gratifying for sure."
It was equally gratifying for Burke, who 10 days ago was stuck in Springfield of the American Hockey League and starting to think his 17-year NHL career might be over. But the Kings, plagued by injuries in goal, claimed him of waivers from the Tampa Bay Lightning on Jan. 18. After being forced to leave his first start early because of dehydration and cramping, Burke looked good in his second.
"I felt pretty strong tonight and I actually felt stronger as it went along, which is a good sign," said Burke, who turns 40 on Monday and spent the All-Star break working on his conditioning after almost two months of inactivity in the AHL. "I had a good break where I actually skated and had some good ice sessions and was able to get my conditioning up a bit so I felt pretty good tonight."
"We were very inconsistent, said Linden, unimpressed his team had 39 shots. "We didn't do a good job away from the puck. We gave them way too many chances. We gave up 40-some shots, so it's not what you get. It's what you give up."
O'Sullivan opened the scoring 1:39 in, and Frolov doubled the lead at 12:26.
Sami Salo responded with a lucky goal 1:47 later, and Linden tied the score six minutes into the second period. Burke then made point-blank saves off Jeff Cowan, Josh Green and Markus Naslund to keep it tied late in the second, and robbed Daniel Sedin twice in the third, including a tip with seven seconds left.
Other than Salo's goal rolling in off the top of his mask -- after being redirected twice by Kings defenders -- Burke's only gaffe was a delay-of-game penalty for playing the puck in the restricted area. Not bad for a guy who a few weeks earlier was helping out in Springfield by doing color commentary on radio broadcasts.
"It's really exciting, I feel very fortunate," Burke said. "But I've been very fortunate in a lot of aspects of my career. I started to think down in Springfield that would be it, but I continued to work hard and try to enjoy the game and this is a real blessing for me."
"Burkie played really good and made a lot of good saves and really kept us going," Frolov said.
- Burke was playing his 799th NHL game.
- Crawford wasn't the only ex-Canuck returning. Kings associate coach Mike Johnston was also let go by the Canucks last summer, and equipment manager Darren Granger also used to work in Vancouver.
- Canucks C Marc Chouinard was in the lineup for just the third time in eight games after the Canucks learned earlier in the day C Ryan Kesler would miss the rest of the regular season after undergoing hip surgery on Monday.
- D Willie Mitchell (groin) is out another week and was replaced by call-up Yannick Tremblay.