Kings Collide With Canadiens; Emerge With 4-3 Victory


4. 67. Final. 3. 152

The Los Angeles Kings provided another quite miraculous performance in front of another great crowd at Staples Center.

And by miraculous, I mean what the Kings seem to do best — a crazy comeback.

Los Angeles opened up to a 2-0 lead rather quickly in the first period after an early goal by Marian Gaborik off of a power play opportunity as well as a Jeff Carter score less than five minutes later that was assisted by Dustin Brown and Justin Williams.

A piece of cake from there, right?

The Montreal Canadiens appeared to have other plans.

Tom Gilbert and Brendan Gallagher provided both of Montreal’s responses as the game saw a 2-2 tie take its way to the final frame.

About seven minutes into the third period is when Max Pacioretty scored goal number 31 on the season thanks to assists from David Desharnais and Dale Weise — and that’s when things started to get pretty chippy in the city of angels.

What does that translate to? Crazy, brace yourself style hockey.

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Just as it looked like the Canadiens were going to get away with a great game on the road, the defending Stanley Cup champs found a way to get it done.

Marian Gaborik got through Canadiens’ goalie Dustin Tokarski for the second time on the night with just 45 seconds remaining in regulation.

That would prove to be enough to send the contest to overtime.

In the extra period, the tension mounted more and more as no goals were scored and no penalties were issued.

Time for a shootout.

Gaborik continued his incredible hot-streak of the evening with a wrist shot that whistled right past Tokarski to open up the shootout. Alex Galchenyuk followed that up with a shot at Jonathan Quick that was saved despite a shot that got into Quick’s personal bubble.

1-0 Los Angeles leads the shootout — one step closer to victory.

Next up in the shootout lineup for L.A. was the other shooting star for the Kings in Jeff Carter.

Carter also was able to score on a wrist shot from just over 20 feet away. The Canadiens were able to respond this time with a score that was just beyond the reach of Jonathan Quick off the stick of David Desharnais.

The score of the shootout is now 2-1 in favor of Los Angeles. Now things get good.

With a chance to get his team up 3-1 in the game of thrones, Tyler Toffoli instead provided his team’s first miss in the shootout.

Now the Canadiens were going to have a chance to extend the game even longer than it had already been drawn out.

Max Pacioretty was able to make some more magic happen and scored for the Canadiens in a desperation effort.

March 5, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Montreal Canadiens left wing Max Pacioretty (67), right wing Dale Weise (22) and center David Desharnais (51) celebrate the goal scored by defenseman Tom Gilbert (77) against the Los Angeles Kings during the second period at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Now the shootout is tied at two-a-piece and the result of the game comes down to who makes and misses their third shot.

Third times the charm though, right?

Anze Kopitar added insult to injury and put Montreal back on the ropes after it looked like momentum might have swung back in the Canadiens’ favor.

Hint: they died

Now with a 3-2 hole staring them in the face, Montreal faced a do-or-die situation.

Lars Eller missed what could’ve been the game-extended goal and then who knows what would’ve happened here.

With the win, Los Angeles keeps its playoff hopes very much alive as it continues to keep pace with the Minnesota Wild who also got a victory Thursday night over Washington Capitals.