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Atlanta at Los Angeles

Thrashers blow 6-3 lead, then take down Kings in shootout

CBSSports.com wire reports
  •  

LOS ANGELES -- Erik Christensen didn't let Ilya Kovalchuk's two goals and an assist against the Los Angeles Kings go to waste.

Christensen scored in the fourth round of the tiebreaker, giving the Atlanta Thrashers a 7-6 victory Monday night after they blew a three-goal lead. Atlanta is 4-0 in shootouts, and is the only team that hasn't lost in that situation this season.

"We're just doing things right. We're shooting the puck and creating some traffic in front of the net, and the puck is going in," Kovalchuk said. "But on the other side, we can't give up six goals a game and three in the last 10 minutes. We need to work on that."

Anze Kopitar scored his second power-play goal of the game for the Kings with five seconds left in the third period to force overtime. The penalty that set it up was a delay-of-game infraction against defenseman Ron Hainsey -- whose delay-of-game penalty in the first period resulted in Jarret Stoll's power-play goal.

The Kings scored a season-high four power-play goals against a penalty-killing unit that came in with the second-worst percentage in the league. The other was by Jack Johnson.

It was the second successive game Los Angeles lost in a shootout after tying it in the final minute of regulation. On Saturday, Dustin Brown scored with 26 seconds left against Edmonton before the Kings lost 3-2.

"This time of year, you want to get two points, not just one," Kopitar said. "Maybe we're fortunate to get this one, but that's not enough. To give up six goals at home, it definitely shouldn't happen."

Rookie defenseman Zach Bogosian had three assists for Atlanta. Bryan Little, Todd White, Marty Reasoner and Colin Stuart also scored for the Thrashers, who tied a franchise record with their fourth consecutive road victory. Vyacheslav Kozlov had two assists, including his 800th NHL point.

Kovalchuk extended his goal-scoring streak to five games during a 5-on-3 power play at 5:50 of the first period and added his 29th with 16:28 remaining. He has 18 in his past 21 games following a career-worst nine-game drought, including a hat trick Sunday in an 8-4 victory at Anaheim.

The Thrashers have 14 regulation goals in their past two games, two more than the combined total in their previous nine contests.

"We're lucky we're scoring a lot of goals right now, because we've allowed 10 goals ourselves in these last two games," Christensen said. "Tonight, we had a great start, but then we took some penalties and it was really tough. They've got a good hockey team with a lot of offensive guys, and we let them right back into the game."

Thrashers backup goalie Johan Hedberg, starting for only the second time in 21 games since Dec. 30, made 39 saves. He came in 0-6-0 lifetime against the Kings with a 3.85 goals-against average.

Alexander Frolov had a goal and two assists for Los Angeles, defenseman Denis Gauthier ended a 123-game goal drought with his first since Dec. 31, 2005, and rookie Drew Doughty had two assists.

One night after getting a season-high 43 shots on net against the Ducks, the team with the league's second-worst record connected on three of its first eight shots against the Kings and chased goalie Jonathan Quick to the bench at 7:41 of the opening period. It was the first time Quick was pulled by coach Terry Murray in 20 starts this season.

The Thrashers extended the margin to 3-0 with power-play goals by Kovalchuk and White. At that point, Quick was replaced by Erik Ersberg.

Stuart scored 43 seconds before intermission for a 5-3 lead and Atlanta's sixth short-handed goal.

Johnson got the Kings on the board at 14:56 of the first. Reasoner, playing in his second game following a three-game benching, restored Atlanta's three-goal margin 33 seconds later.

Stoll cut the margin to 4-2 at 17:34 of the first with his 14th goal while Hainsey was serving a delay-of-game penalty. Frolov added his 23rd goal at 5:01 of the second.

"After the first period when we got that 3-0 lead pretty quick, I think we let up a bit and got outworked by them," Little said. "They were playing really desperate, and we were running around a bit. That's when they came back in the game, and that's something we've got to get better at."

Notes

  • The last time the Kings won a game after trailing by as many as three goals was Nov. 10, 2007, at Staples Center, when they scored five times in a 5:07 span of the third period against Dallas' Marty Turco to overcome a 4-0 deficit and won 6-5 in overtime.
  • The Thrashers played at Staples Center for the first time since Jan. 19, 2006.
  • Kovalchuk, who has one year left on his contract, has 13 goals and four assists in 15 games since being named team captain on Jan. 11. The Thrashers are 7-8 during that stretch.
Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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After a rough third period, Atlanta's Johan Hedberg comes up big in the shootout.  (US Presswire)
After a rough third period, Atlanta's Johan Hedberg comes up big in the shootout. (US Presswire)
Scoreboard
Atlanta  (21-32-5) «41101 (2)7
Los Angeles (24-22-9)21300 (1)6
Three Stars
A. Kopitar
LA


Goals: 2
Assist(s): 2
I. Kovalchuk
ATL


Goals: 2
Assist(s): 1
A. Frolov
LA


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 2

Related Video

Scoring Summary
1ST PERIOD
01:11Bryan Little (23), Backhand Shot. Assist: Kovalchuk, Bogosian
05:59Power Play - Ilya Kovalchuk (28), Slap Shot. Assist: Hainsey, Kozlov
07:41Power Play - Todd White (15), Wrist Shot. Assist: Little, Bogosian
14:56Power Play - Jack Johnson (2), Slap Shot. Assist: Doughty, O'Sullivan
15:29Marty Reasoner (9), Wrist Shot. Assist: Peverley, Kozlov
17:34Power Play - Jarret Stoll (14), Wrist Shot. Assist: Frolov, Brown
2ND PERIOD
05:01Alexander Frolov (23), Tip-In. Assist: O'Sullivan, Kopitar
19:17Short - Colin Stuart (3), Tip-In. Assist: Enstrom, Reasoner
3RD PERIOD
03:32Ilya Kovalchuk (29), Snap Shot. Assist: White, Bogosian
07:30Power Play - Anze Kopitar (17), Slap Shot. Assist: Doughty, Johnson
10:05Denis Gauthier (1), Slap Shot. Assist: Kopitar, Frolov
19:55Power Play - Anze Kopitar (18), Wrist Shot. Assist: Brown, Handzus
OT
None
SHOOTOUT
 Anze Kopitar (1), GOAL
 Slava Kozlov (4), GOAL
 Erik Christensen (2), GOAL
Penalty Summary
1ST PERIOD
04:09Richardson, 2 min, High-Sticking
05:44Gauthier, 2 min, Holding
07:54Exelby, 5 min, Fighting
07:54Armstrong, 5 min, Fighting
14:48Little, 2 min, Hooking
15:58Hainsey, 2 min, Delay of Game - Puck Over Glass
2ND PERIOD
06:09Boulton, 2 min, Elbowing
07:33Peverley, 2 min, Roughing
10:50Armstrong, 2 min, Holding
14:05Stuart, 2 min, Hooking
18:34Boulton, 2 min, Interference
3RD PERIOD
06:43Armstrong, 2 min, Hooking
18:33Hainsey, 2 min, Delay of Game - Puck Over Glass
OT
None
SHOOTOUT
None
Shots On Goal
 123T
Atlanta129425
Los Angeles9151943
Goalies
GoalieMINSSGASO SSO GA
Johan Hedberg 64:5039641
Erik Ersberg55:3617342
Jonathan Quick 7:414300
Power Play Conversions
Power Play
Atlanta2-for-3
Los Angeles4-for-8
Game Information
Attendance - 18118
Referees - Dan Marouelli, Brad Watson
Linesmen - Lonnie Cameron, Ryan Galloway
 
Other Games
Ott 2 Final
Nash 0
Edm 3 Final
Pho 1
Pitt 2 Final
NYI 3
NYR 1 Final
StL 2
Dal 3 Final
Colu 2