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Kings top Jets, extend win streak to 6
Winnipeg, MB (SportsNetwork.com) - Mike Richards and Dustin Brown each netted second-period goals, giving Jonathan Quick and the red-hot Los Angeles Kings all the support they would need in a 3-1 verdict over the Winnipeg Jets at MTS Centre.
Alec Martinez added a power-play goal later on to sew up the Kings' sixth consecutive victory, matching a season-high streak set from Dec. 2-14. Quick was lightly tested, but aided the cause by stopping 17-of-18 shots.
Ondrej Pavelec kept the Jets in it for much of the way with a 38-save effort, but Winnipeg mustered only Olli Jokinen's 15th goal of the season in its second home loss in three days.
"They're tight defensively, so simplifying is the way to go against them," Jets captain Andrew Ladd said of the Kings. "You've got to try to throw everything at them and create off of that. We probably didn't do enough of that."
Richards delivered the game-winner off a Winnipeg turnover with 3:45 remaining in the second period. After intercepting an errant pass from the Jets' Tobias Enstrom, the Los Angeles center used defenseman Zach Bogosian as a screen and fired a rising shot over Pavelec's glove to snap a 1-1 tie.
The Kings made the lead hold up with a dominant final period in which they put up 20 shots to the Jets' five. A high-sticking penalty to Blake Wheeler with just over six minutes to go sealed Winnipeg's fate, as Martinez spun past a defender on the resulting power play before launching a perfectly placed wrister that beat Pavelec to the stick side.
"In the third we kind of slowed down a bit and maybe sat back a bit," Richards said. "But I thought we played well. We didn't do much with (the puck), other than kept it simple and got back to the net with it."
Both teams generated few chances as the game remained scoreless past the midway stage of the second period, then each scored once within a span of 42 seconds.
The Jets got on the board first, as Evander Kane won a battle for a puck dumped in the Los Angeles zone and sent a centering feed that Jokinen deposited into the net with 7:57 left in the middle session.
Los Angeles answered almost immediately. Shortly after the ensuing faceoff, Brown rushed the net to sneak a Jarret Stoll pass through Pavelec's pads to knot the contest at 1-1.
Forward Marian Gaborik, acquired by Los Angeles from Columbus at Wednesday's trade deadline, went pointless with a minus-one rating in his Kings debut ... The win was the Kings' first in Winnipeg since the Jets moved there from Atlanta, having gone 0-1-1 in their previous two visits to MTS Centre ... Los Angeles upped its record to 19-0-0 this season when leading after two periods ... Forward Mark Schiefele (sprained MCL) and forward Chris Thorburn (upper- body) did not play for Winnipeg. Both were hurt in Tuesday's overtime loss to the New York Islanders.
03/06 23:02:50 ET