Kings fall flat against Coyotes
GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Phoenix coach Dave Tippett had a meeting with Mikkel Boedker on Monday, and the message was basic: Hang on to the puck and see how much better things can be.
Boedker did that Tuesday night and scored twice to lead the Coyotes past the Los Angeles Kings 5-2.
“When he has the puck he can be a very dangerous player,” Tippett said. “He just has to have it more. … We just talked about when he gets it, don’t give it away so easy. Let’s see what happens when you keep it for a while, and tonight he kept it and good things happen.”
Shane Doan and Raffi Torres had a goal and assist apiece for the Coyotes, who led 4-0 before Mike Richards and Dustin Brown scored power-play goals for the Kings.
Phoenix’s Rob Klinkhammer sealed it with his second career NHL goal in two games since he was recalled from Portland of the American Hockey League four days earlier.
Mike Smith, in his 250th NHL game, had 31 saves for Phoenix. Jonathan Quick had 24 for the Kings, who played for the second night in a row.
“We were tired, they were fresh,” Kings coach Darryl Sutter said. “It’s not too hard to figure out.”
Taking advantage of teams playing on consecutive nights is crucial in this lockout-condensed season.
“We jumped on them with fresh legs and carried it on through the game,” Torres said.
The Coyotes won their second in a row and for the fourth time in six games. It was the third career two-goal game for Boedker.
Phoenix earned its first regulation win in six regular-season meetings with Los Angeles. The Kings beat the Coyotes in five games in last season’s Western Conference finals, and Los Angeles went on to win the Stanley Cup.
“Last year is over with. It’s something they did, and we can’t think about that,” Boedker said. “But it’s always good to beat a rival and it’s always good to beat L.A.”
The Coyotes dominated the first period, killing two penalties and scoring twice.
Boedker started it, taking a pass from Torres and slipping a wrist shot just inside the left post 9:25 into the game.
After the second penalty kill, Doan scored his team-leading ninth goal of the season and his third in three games. Derek Morris’ shot deflected off the Coyotes captain’s skate and into the net, making it 2-0 with 3:13 left in the period.
Phoenix added two more in the second, first on Boedker’s one-timer on a power play in front of the net, with an assist from Keith Yandle. Torres then came barreling in from the side to knock the puck in off Quick’s deflection of Doan’s shot, giving the Coyotes a 4-0 lead with 7:27 to go in the period.
Boedker hadn’t had a goal or assist in his last four games and had just two goals in his last 16.
“I had a long talk with Tip yesterday, just about keeping the puck when I have it and not giving it away,” he said. “I took that to heart. … It’s nice to get goals. It’s always nice to get goals.”
The Kings broke through on their third power play of the night. Richards scored from the right circle, with the puck finding the net just inside the right post. That made it 4-1 with 2:23 left in the second.
Brown’s ninth goal of the season, just after Morris went to the penalty box for slashing, cut it to 4-2 with 15:27 to play in the third.
But Klinkhammer took the puck down the right side and knocked it past Quick at 10:55.
Phoenix will play the Kings twice next week in Los Angeles, on Tuesday and Wednesday. The games come at the end of a four-game trip that starts Thursday in St. Louis.
The Kings, who lost for the fourth time in 15 games, will play at San Jose on Thursday.
“I think it’s important for us to realize that we got off to a rough start and we’ve been playing better hockey as of late,” Brown said, “but if you look at the standings, any night you’re not getting points, you’re falling. That’s just the nature of the Western Conference and the shortened season.”
NOTES: Quick has allowed at least four goals in three of his last six starts. … Phoenix recalled D Chris Summers from Portland of the AHL. … The Kings had earned points in five straight games against the Coyotes (3-0-2). … Phoenix D Zbynek Michalek and C Matthew Lombardi (lower body injury) were scratched. … All three Kings penalties were on Jake Muzzin, two for hooking and one for interference.