LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles Kings didn’t allow themselves to look past the Montreal Canadiens to an even more significant game in a couple of days.
Anze Kopitar and Tanner Pearson scored less than 3 minutes apart early in the first period and Dwight King scored on a breakaway in the third, leading the Kings to a 3-2 victory Thursday night.
The victory kept Los Angeles tied for the Pacific Division lead with the Anaheim Ducks, who come to Staples Center for a Saturday matinee against their Southern California rivals after tying a franchise record with their 10th straight victory Thursday night at Arizona.
The Ducks trailed the Kings by 15 points on January 2, and beat them decisively 4-2 last Sunday in Anaheim with a hat trick by Corey Perry.
“It’s going to be the biggest game of the year, and everybody knows that going in,” King said. “We know what’s on the line, so it’s going to be pretty much playoff hockey. They’ve been on a hot streak as of late. Ten wins in a row is an impressive feat, and that’s probably where they made up a lot of ground. But we can make amends on Saturday.”