Andersson’s shootout goal lifts Kings over Flames 3-2
CALGARY, Alberta (AP) — Lias Andersson scored the deciding goal in the shootout, Cal Petersen made 26 saves and the Los Angeles Kings edged the Calgary Flames 3-2 on Thursday night.
Alex Iaffalo and Viktor Arvidsson scored in regulation for Los Angeles, which moved within five points of Pacific Division-leading Calgary. The Flames have three games in hand.
“A gutsy, gutsy win,” said Arvidsson, whose 19th goal at 15:38 came just over two minutes after Calgary had taken its first lead of the night. “The team doesn’t quit. It’s just who we are. It’s in our DNA. It’s a good quality to have this time of year.”
Johnny Gaudreau and Erik Gudbranson scored for Calgary, which lost consecutive games for the first time since early January. After a stretch of winning 15 of 17 home games, Calgary has won just two of its last six (2-2-2) at the Scotiabank Saddledome.
“We weren’t very good tonight, I don’t think,” Gaudreau said. “They’re a desperate team trying to catch us in the standings, so we’ve got to be ready for a little pushback there in the third.”
The Kings and Flames meet again in Los Angeles on Monday night.
“It’s desperate times for a lot of teams, it’s desperate times for us,” Gudbranson said. “We’ve got to be the more desperate team every night.”
Andersson was Los Angeles’ second player in the shootout and scored by squeezing a shot through Jacob Markstrom’s pads as he cut in off the wing. The goal stood as the winner with Petersen denying Mikael Backlund, Matthew Tkachuk and Gaudreau.
“It was huge to come back. We’re running on fumes,” Kings coach Todd McLellan said. “Somebody asked me on our Zoom call today about the heart of our team. With these types of wins, the heart just gets bigger and stronger as we go along.”
After giving up six goals in his last start, Petersen rebounded with a terrific performance to improve to 19-11-1. During one stretch in the first period, he kicked out a pad to get a toe on Backlund’s shot, then stretched out his glove to deny Blake Coleman on the rebound.
In the second, he stopped Oliver Kylington on a 2-on-1 and seconds later got his shoulder on a dangerous shot from the slot by Tyler Toffoli.
Los Angeles dominated overtime, outshooting the Flames 6-0 but couldn’t solve Markstrom. Four of the shots came on a power play when Elias Lindholm was sent off for holding.
Down 1-0 after 40 minutes on Iafallo’s goal in the second period, Calgary tied it 1:36 into the third on a power-play goal by Gaudreau. The play capped off an eventful sequence for the left wing.
He was crunched into the boards from behind by Kings defenseman Sean Durzi, drawing a cross-checking penalty. Then on the power play, Gaudreau turned the puck over to Alex Iafallo, only to chase him down and steal it back again.
Shortly after leading the Flames back up ice again, Gaudreau converted Noah Hanifin’s rebound for his 31st goal.
The Flames surged ahead at 13:33 on a rare goal generated from the fourth line. Milan Lucic and Sean Monahan combined to get the puck back to Gudbranson at the point and his shot through a crowd eluded Petersen.
But the Kings countered just over two minutes later with Arvidsson burying a shot inside the post. He broke through the slot and was neatly set up on a backhand pass from behind the net by Phillip Danault, who had his back to the play.
“I turned around and saw Phil alone behind the net,” Arvidsson said. “I tried to find a spot and he found me right on the tape.”
NOTES: Tkachuk’s five-game point streak (four goals, eight assists) was snapped. … The Flames lost Kylington early in the third when he went heavily into the boards after a hit from Rasmus Kupari. … Seventy of Gaudreau’s 91 points have come at even-strength, which leads the NHL.
Los Angeles: At Winnipeg Jets on Saturday to complete a three-game trip.
Calgary: Host St. Louis Blues on Saturday to complete a six-game homestand.
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