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Kings down Sharks to avoid sweep
Los Angeles, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Marian Gaborik and Justin Williams each scored twice, Jonathan Quick stopped 36 shots and the Los Angeles Kings avoided a sweep with a 6-3 triumph over the San Jose Sharks in Game 4 of their Western Conference quarterfinal series.
The game was tied 2-2 in the second before Williams and Tyler Toffoli tallied 2:54 apart late in the frame to send the Kings into the third with a 4-2 lead.
Gaborik scored his second of the night 34 seconds into the third, and Quick, despite giving up a power-play goal to Joe Pavelski at 11:36, made enough saves down the stretch to extend Los Angeles' season.
Dustin Brown added an empty-netter with 1:28 remaining to account for the final margin.
James Sheppard and Matt Nieto each scored once for the Sharks, who still hold a 3-1 series lead and will take their second stab at closing out the Kings when they host Game 5 on Saturday.
Antti Niemi allowed five goals on 26 shots before being pulled early in the third in favor of Alex Stalock, who made four saves in relief.
Nieto netted his second of the series 8:25 into the second to tie the game at 2-2, but the Kings scored the game's next three goals, starting with Williams' second of the night at 16:07.
The LA winger showed off some slick hand-eye coordination to break the tie, as Willie Mitchell's left point blast missed wide and caromed off the end boards to the low left side, where Williams swatted it out of midair for a 3-2 lead.
Toffoli doubled the lead with 58.8 ticks left in the second when he picked up a blocked shot in the left circle and ripped it past Niemi's right pad to make it 4-2.
Gaborik beat Niemi blocker side with a wicked wrister from the right circle 34 seconds into the third, extending LA's lead to 5-2.
Pavelski swatted home a rebound amid a scrum in front with the Sharks on the power play at 11:36 of the third, but San Jose failed to get anything else past Quick the rest of the way.
Tempers flared shortly after Brown's empty-netter, as Williams and teammate Robyn Regehr, along with San Jose's Justin Braun and Brent Burns, all received fighting majors in the final minute.
Early on, Gaborik gave the Kings a 1-0 lead just over four minutes in when he stuffed in a rebound off a Brown shot at 4:08.
The Sharks answered with just 7.3 seconds left in the opening frame, as Quick fought off Scott Hannan's one-timer, only the see Sheppard swat the rebound out of midair and into the back of the net to tie the game at 1-1.
Williams snuck a shot under Niemi's pads from the right circle with LA on the power play 3:52 into the second, but Nieto put home a rebound at 8:25 to even the game.
The Kings are now 11-1-1 in the last 13 meetings versus San Jose at Staples Center ... Gaborik and Williams each recorded their second career two-goal games in the playoffs ... San Jose went 1-for-4 on the power play ... San Jose's Patrick Marleau supplied two assists.
04/25 02:13:50 ET