Chicago, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - Jeff Carter scored three of Los Angeles'
five third-period goals and the Kings evened the Western Conference finals
with a 6-2 win over the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 2 on Wednesday.
Jonathan Quick made 23 saves for the Kings, who registered their first road
playoff victory in Chicago in eight tries.
Corey Crawford stopped 18-of-19 Los Angeles shots through 40 minutes before
surrendering four goals on 11 shots in the third.
The Blackhawks suffered their first home loss in this postseason.
Game 3 is Saturday in Los Angeles.
"I really liked how we played for 38 minutes. We did everything we were
looking to do," said Blackhawks head coach Joel Quenneville. "They got a
little momentum at the end of the period scoring a big goal for them on an
innocent play, gave them some life."
Chicago owned a 2-0 lead late in the second period, but the Kings got on the
board via a lucky carom prior to the intermission.
The puck slithered through Crawford's pads with 1:46 remaining after
deflecting off the right skate of Justin Williams. Mike Richards had tried to
set up Williams, who was battling in the crease, with a pass.
"To be honest with you, I thought we were a little flat heading up to that
goal," Carter said. "We got a bounce. The guys worked hard to get to the net.
It gave us a little bit of life. Gave us a little bit of extra energy going
into the third."
Los Angeles grabbed the lead with two power-play goals early in the third.
Carter was screening Crawford and tipped Drew Doughty's point shot, tying the
game at 1:37.
Jake Muzzin, who had a key block during a 5-on-3 Chicago power play in the
first period that Los Angeles killed, beat Crawford high on the short side
with a slap shot from the left circle at 4:04 to give the Kings a 3-2 lead.
The Blackhawks couldn't quell Los Angeles' momentum.
Tanner Pearson retrieved a puck from behind the net and dished out front to
Tyler Toffoli, who scored from the slot at 8:59. The Chicago players were slow
to react after a shot from Carter went high in the air behind Crawford. They
likely expected the puck to make contact with the protective netting, but
it did not.
Carter scored on a 2-on-1 break with 5:16 remaining and added an empty-netter
to complete the hat trick with 3:31 left.
The Kings survived 38 seconds of a Chicago two-man advantage early in the
first period, and Toffoli helped prevent a puck from crossing the goal line
after Los Angeles defenseman Willie Mitchell cross-checked Chicago forward
Peter Regin into the net.
Nick Leddy opened the scoring on the subsequent power play after the Kings had
a chance shorthanded.
Carter couldn't knock down a pass from Richards when the puck came to him at
the right post on a 3-on-2 rush. Chicago defenseman Duncan Keith picked up the
puck and sent a long, diagonal pass to Leddy. He had a step on Kings
defenseman Matt Greene and backhanded the puck from the inside edge of the
right circle past Quick with 5:44 left in the opening frame.
Ben Smith made it 2-0 at 1:40 of the second period. Johnny Oduya fired a
stretch pass from in front of Crawford that Brandon Bollig tipped onto the
stick of Smith at the Los Angeles blue line. Smith then beat Quick on the
stick side with a shot from the slot.
Quick denied Brent Seabrook on a 2-on-1 with about seven minutes left to keep
the deficit at two goals.
"Seabrook is a right shot, so it was a different angle than if it was a one-
timer opportunity," Quick said. "Just trying to get it over to the post.
Fortunate to get a piece of it."
Carter's four points in the third period tied an NHL playoff record, and he
joined Tommy Williams as the only Kings players to score three goals in a
period in the postseason. Williams accomplished the feat against the
Blackhawks on April 14, 1974 ... Carter's hat trick was the 11th in Kings
postseason history and second by him ... The Kings matched a playoff record
for most goals in a period ... The Blackhawks had been 8-0 when scoring first