After beating the Blues in four straight in the Western Conference semifinals last spring, the Kings completed their second sweep of a season series against St. Louis with a 4-2 victory Thursday night.
Los Angeles, which has beaten the Blues eight consecutive times including the playoffs, first accomplished the season series sweep in 2005-06.
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"Playing last year in the playoffs, there seems to be a rivalry brewing," said the Kings' Justin Williams, who sealed the victory with an empty-net goal with 1:16 left. "They haven't gotten the results they have wanted against us so far, so I'm sure it's frustrating for them. But at the same time, we played a great road game."
"It's not good, because the team loses," Tarasenko said. "It doesn't matter how many goals you score and how many plays you make. It's all about the win."
Richards gave the Kings the victory when he capitalized after Halak gave up a rebound on a soft shot. The puck went to the right side of the net, but came back in front and Richards eventually jammed it in for his 10th goal.
"I'm not even sure what happened," Richards said. "Somehow, the puck kept coming back to me. I got lucky there and jammed it in."
The goal was the type the Kings have been scoring of late.
"Before we were trying to make too many pretty plays," Richards said. "When you do that, you don't score as many goals if you just keep it simple and throw it to the net."
"Every time we've played them, it's a physical game," Kopitar said. "That's the third time we beat them, and I don't know how many times in a row now.
"It is what it is. Of course, they're a little frustrated. That's what happens sometimes at the end of the game."
Tarasenko tied it for the second time when he shoved home a puck that had drifted through Quick at 6:44 of the third period to make it 2-2. The Blues' rookie had also knotted the score at 1 when he put his own rebound past Quick at 10:55 of the second period.
Lewis made it 2-1 at 12:49 of the second when he corralled a bouncing pass from Stoll to the right of the Blues' goal and sneaked a backhander past Halak.
|Los Angeles goalie Jonathan Quick denies St. Louis left wing Andy McDonald during the second period. (USATSI)|
|Los Angeles (19-12-2) «||0||2||2||4|
|St. Louis (17-14-2)||0||1||1||2|
Save Pct.: .909
|04:42||- Dustin Brown (13), Slap Shot. Assist: Kopitar, Scuderi|
|10:55||Power Play - Vladimir Tarasenko (7), Wrist Shot. Assist: Perron, Sobotka|
|12:49||- Trevor Lewis (5), Backhand Shot. Assist: Stoll, King|
|06:44||- Vladimir Tarasenko (8), Wrist Shot. Assist: Pietrangelo, Shattenkirk|
|17:17||- Mike Richards (8), Wrist Shot. Assist: Carter, Toffoli|
|18:44||- Justin Williams (5), Empty Net. Assist: Brown, Voynov|
|08:15||Lewis, 2 min, Roughing|
|12:06||Jackman, 2 min, Slashing|
|19:25||Backes, 2 min, Holding|
|06:16||Perron, 2 min, Tripping|
|09:57||Brown, 2 min, Tripping|
|12:21||Clifford, 2 min, Slashing|
|18:44||Backes, 2 min, Roughing|
|Shots On Goal|