Kings 3, Blues 1
LOS ANGELES (AP)—Sean Avery tied it early in the third period and Michael Cammalleri scored the go-ahead goal less than 4 minutes later on a power play, helping the Los Angeles Kings beat the St. Louis Blues 3-1 on Saturday night.
Eric Belanger tied a career high with his 16th goal, newly acquired Brent Sopel had two assists, and Mathieu Garon made 23 saves after giving up 14 goals in the previous three games. St. Louis rookie Mike Glumac had a power-play goal in the second period.
With the victory, the Kings swept the four-game season series. The Blues, who entered the NHL with the Kings and four other expansion teams in 1967-68, went an entire season without beating the Kings only one other time. They were 0-3 with a tie in 1974-75. St. Louis had beaten Los Angeles six straight times entering this season.
Craig Conroy returned to the Los Angeles lineup after missing two games with an eye injury, but his two partners on the team’s top-scoring line remained sidelined because of injuries. Pavol Demitra missed his second game with a concussion, and Alexander Frolov his ninth because of a separated shoulder.
The Kings outshot the Blues 18-3 in the final period. St. Louis’ Christian Backman was serving a holding penalty when Cammalleri put the Kings ahead 2-1 with his 24th goal, a slap shot from the top of the right circle that deflected in off the skate of Blues defenseman Kevin Dallman as he was checking Dustin Brown in front of the net.
Los Angeles had only six shots on net in the first period despite four power plays—including a two-man advantage for 1:25. The Blues were so busy killing off penalties, they recorded only one shot themselves during the first 14 1/2 minutes.
Blumac put St. Louis ahead at 11:36 of the second period while Cammalleri was off for hooking Backman. The Kings turned the puck over at the opposite blue line and Dean McAmmond fed the puck to Blumac, who beat Garon high to the glove side with a 45-foot snap shot for his fourth goal in 16 NHL games.
The Kings tied it exactly a minute into the third. Sopel threw the puck toward the net from the right point and Avery stopped it with his stick in front of the crease before swerving around Lalime and sliding his 14th goal past Lalime’s stick.
Avery, Sopel and teammate Nathan Dempsey were among 200 NHL players using specially designed pink sticks to support the NHL’s “Tribute to Hockey Moms.” The autographed sticks are to be auctioned off at various fund raising events that support breast cancer research. As Avery celebrated his goal, he held his stick in the air and tapped it with his right glove.
Los Angeles has scored one first-period goal over its last eight games. They came in with 75 first-period goals, second in the league to Colorado’s 82. … Belanger crashed into the right post during a power play with 11 minutes left in the second period, knocking the net off its mooring. But neither referee noticed it, and play continued as Belanger put the moved the net back in place. … St. Louis has scored the first goal in 15 of its last 20 games.