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Power play carries Flames past Kings

The SportsXchange

LOS ANGELES -- In a season that started with low expectations, the Calgary Flames keep proving their critics wrong.

Facing a team that was their nemesis over the past three seasons, the Flames used three power-play goals, the last one by T.J. Brodie with 30 seconds remaining, to emerge with a 3-2 victory over the Los Angeles Kings on Monday night at Staples Center.

Goalie Karri Ramo made 27 saves for the Flames (4-2-2).

The Kings (6-4-0) saw their four-game, head-to-head winning streak against Calgary end.

Flames coach Bob Hartley was impressed with his young team's production with the man advantage.

"Our execution was very good," Hartley said. "We kept it simple, and our right guys had the puck. I think that (Mike Cammalleri, who made his season debut Monday after missing the first seven games with an upper-body injury) brought like a totally new dimension to our power play. ... As we saw in our first goal, we can snipe that puck real quick, and he did.

"We knew coming here that it would be physical so there would be power plays on both sides, and I think we won the special teams battle."

Kings center Anze Kopitar, who committed the hooking penalty that led to the winning goal, took the defeat personally.

"We definitely lost the special teams battles," he said. "Usually when that happens, the outcome is not going to be very good, especially when it is by that big of a margin. We took some bad penalties, including myself, it was a stupid penalty on my part and shouldn't have happened."

Los Angeles trailed 2-1 late in the second period before a two-on-two rush by forwards Mike Richards and Jeff Carter produced a short-handed goal. Carter broke down the right side, tossed a feed toward the net and got a fortuitous bounce when Flames defenseman Mark Giordano deflected the puck past Ramo. The short-handed tally was Los Angeles' second of the season.

Kings defenseman Drew Doughty opened the scoring at 18:36 of the first period with his third goal of the season. With Los Angeles on the power play, Dustin Brown fed Doughty from along the left boards, and Doughty drilled a shot past Ramo. Doughty's score tied him with Larry Murphy for sixth all time in goals among Los Angeles defensemen, 52.

Cammalleri tied the game at 2:50 of the second period. Jiri Hudler's cross-ice pass set up the diminutive winger alone, and Cammalleri beat Kings goalie Jonathan Quick with a slap shot from 32 feet. Cammalleri's first goal of the season was his seventh in 14 games against the team that drafted him in 2001.

The high-scoring winger shook off early rust to post a multi-point game for the first time since April 24 against the Anaheim Ducks.

"I have to admit that things feel a bit lighter when you get one," Cammalleri said. "We didn't have a great amount of chances, but our forecheck was strong and our pressure created turnovers."

The Kings' penalty kill betrayed them again when Flames rookie center Sean Monahan banged home his sixth goal off a Cammalleri rebound at 13:39 of the middle period, giving Calgary a 2-1 lead. Los Angeles entered the game on a streak of 14 consecutive kills, but Monahan furthered his case to stick with the Flames when he outfought Los Angeles defenseman Matt Greene to lift the puck into the net.

Greene said that the Kings' failure to defend while a man short was the difference.

"We need to be stronger on pucks, be better positionally and just (be better) on everything," Greene said. "If you give up three PK goals in a game, it is unacceptable, and we have got to be better."

Quick finished with 22 saves.

NOTES: The Kings will face the Phoenix Coyotes on Thursday to continue a stretch of eight out of nine games at Staples Center. ... The Flames travel to play the Coyotes on Tuesday. ... Los Angeles centers Anze Kopitar, Mike Richards, Jarret Stoll and Colin Fraser have failed to register a goal in the team's first 10 games. ... According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Monahan's four-game goal streak between Oct. 4-11 was the longest by a Calgary rookie since 1990, when LW Paul Ranheim found the back of the net in four consecutive games from Jan. 25-Feb. 1.
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