Kings get boost from power play in 5-2 win over Islanders
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Drew Doughty and Alex Iafallo scored on the power play as part of a four-goal outburst in the second period, and the Los Angeles Kings defeated the New York Islanders 5-2 on Tuesday night.
Blake Lizotte, Trevor Moore and Quinton Byfield also scored for Los Angeles. Joonas Korpisalo made 26 saves, and the Kings improved to 6-0-1 in their past seven games.
“They’re more committed, they’re more calculated with the risk that they’re willing to take on the ice. And lo and behold, they’re scoring more, so it’s working well that way right now,” Kings coach Todd McLellan said.
Pierre Engvall and Jean-Gabriel Pageau each had a goal, but the Islanders have dropped their past two games following three straight wins as part of a five-game point streak. Ilya Sorokin allowed four goals on 36 shots.
“We’ve just got to bounce back,” Engvall said. “I think we had some really good periods in the game.”
The Kings took charge on special teams after the Islanders lost their composure early in the second when Matt Martin was penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct after throwing a helmet during a scrum. Following a subsequent kneeing call against Zach Parise, Doughty buried a one-timer set up by Anze Kopitar during the 5-on-3 power play for a 2-1 lead.
Iafallo made it 3-1 one minute later, tapping in the rebound after Viktor Arvidsson hit the post for his 10th goal of the season.
“We just got a little sharper, a little faster,” McLellan said of the 2-for-2 showing with the man advantage.
That was enough for Los Angeles to continue its home-ice dominance, posting a 10-3-1 record since the start of 2023. In their past eight outings at Crypto.com Arena, the lone blemish for the Kings was a shootout loss to Nashville on Saturday.
“It didn’t go as planned there in the second,” Engvall said. “Obviously, it’s something we want to do better.”
With a top-10 power play giving them an extra lift they lacked last season, operating at 27.6% efficiency at home (34 for 123), Moore isn’t surprised the Kings are in mix for the Pacific Division title and best record in the Western Conference .
“We still have to be the better 5-on-5 team, but now we have the added boost of having really good special teams, and I think it shows,” Moore said.
STABILITY IN NET
Korpisalo has won all three starts since he was traded to the Kings from Columbus on Feb. 28, allowing two goals in each of those outings.
“There’s a calmness to him,” McLellan said. “He’s a veteran. ‘I’ve been here before. Let me do my job.’ And I think it rubs off on the players, and the players have played well around our goaltenders.”
BACK AT IT
Pageau, who cut it to 4-2 late in the second, had missed the past 12 games because of an upper-body injury. He played 13:39, centering the third line and getting extensive work on the power play and penalty kill, but was disappointed in his return after being at fault on Iafallo’s winning goal.
“I looked myself in the mirror and I think I have better, so I’ll be better tomorrow,” he said.
NOTES: Lizotte tied his career high with his 10th goal and reached the 30-point mark for the first time in four seasons. … Engvall has scored in consecutive games, his first two points in five games since being acquired from Toronto. … Islanders D Ryan Pulock had two assists.
Islanders: At Anaheim on Wednesday night.
Kings: Host Columbus on Thursday night.
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