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Kings and Jones roll on, 5-2

The SportsXchange

OTTAWA -- For the Los Angeles Kings, a three-goal first period lead is money in the bank these days.

Especially with rookie goalie Martin Jones between the pipes.

The Kings chased Senators goalie Craig Anderson with two goals in the first 4:18, added another before the intermission and then hung on to defeat the Ottawa Senators, 5-2, at Canadian Tire Centre.

It was the sixth win in a row for the Kings, who have not given up more than two goals, and have lost only once in regulation, over their last 18 games.

"It just goes to show it really is a team effort with these guys," said Jones, who made 37 saves and has allowed only five goals while starting his NHL career with a 5-0-0 record.

"They played so strong defensively; they're so disciplined in the way they play with their structure. For whoever is in net, they do a great job of battling in front, blocking shots ... it helps us out a lot."

It was the second victory over Ottawa this season for the Kings, who on Oct. 9 in Los Angeles also had a 3-0 first period lead, but needed overtime to finish off the Senators.

The Senators threatened to pull off another comeback when defenseman Joe Corvo scored in the second and defenseman Erik Karlsson narrowed the gap again early in the third, but Kings center Jarret Stoll dashed their hopes by cashing in a rebound with under seven minutes to play.

Center Anze Kopitar led the Kings with two goals, included the game's only power play marker with under four minutes left in the third.

Wingers Dwight King and Jeff Carter popped in a couple of weak ones on Anderson to convince Ottawa coach Paul MacLean it was time to call on goalie Robin Lehner.

"We were generating a lot," Senators winger Chris Nell said. "I thought we had them on their heels a bit. Then they get the late goal and make it 4-2, and it just deflated us."

King's goal only 21 second into the first period was a tough one for the Senators (13-15-6), who came into the game needing some bounces against the Kings (22-7-4).

Anderson misplayed the shot, allowing it to hit his blocker and pop over it before rolling over the line.

"It's a (crappy) goal, but at the same time we can't just put it on (Anderson)," Karlsson said. "The things he's done for us in the past is probably way more than one unlucky bounce.

"We should be able to clean it up for him. We didn't have his back like he has ours."

Carter's goal was also weak, as his harmless looking shot from the slot found a hole in Anderson.

"I had a bad day," Anderson said. "Everybody has a bad day once in a while. It just so happens the red light goes on when I make a mistake. It's all magnified that way. It stinks, but I can't focus on it too much. I've got to move forward. You've got to put it behind you.

"It's a little blip on the radar and one of those things where the sooner you forget about it the better off you'll be."

Lehner stopped 19-of-22 shots by the Kings, who take their streak into Chicago for a game Sunday.

"There's a bunch of things going right, right now," Stoll said. "We've just got to make sure we stay on top of it. We've got to make sure we just keep going and don't let our play slip. We've got a full team right now."

The Senators host the St. Louis Blues on Monday, and they are probably happy it's not an afternoon game. They have been outscored 11-3 in matinees at Canadian Tire Centre this season.

"I've been struggling for (an explanation)," MacLean said. "Every 2 p.m. game we've had this year, we've struggled to start, whether it's for one reason or another, defensively, offensively or the goaltender.

"We've always found a way to not be ready to play and not be ready to get off to a good start. We might have to consider rescheduling those start times for next year."

NOTES: Senators G Craig Anderson lasted 12 seconds longer than his earliest exit of the season. On Oct. 13 in Anaheim, he was pulled at 4:06 of the first period after giving up two goals on nine shots. ... By keeping the Senators off the score sheet in the opening 20 minutes, the Kings extended their streak of not giving up a first period goal to 18 games. ... Senators RW Chris Neil entered the game seven penalty minutes shy of reaching the 2,100-mark for his career. He was three shy of moving past legendary tough guys Al Second and Terry O'Reilly and into 44th on the all-time list. ... Kings C Anze Kopitar became only the second Los Angeles player to reach double digits in goals this season. His two gave him 11 and a tie for the team lead with RW Justin Williams. ... Senators D Joe Corvo scored his first goal against the team that made him a fourth round draft pick in 1997. The only team Corvo has not scored against in his 701 game career is the Dallas Stars.
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