Blue Jackets comeback falls short against defending champs

Blue Jackets comeback falls short against defending champs

Published Feb. 9, 2015 9:56 p.m. ET

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Jeff Carter and Dwight King each had a goal and an assist, and Jonathan Quick stopped 23 shots to lead the Los Angeles Kings past the Columbus Blue Jackets 4-3 on Monday night.

Tyler Toffoli and Dustin Brown also scored for the Kings, and Brayden McNabb added two assists.

Scott Hartnell, playing in his 1,000th NHL game, notched his 263rd goal. David Savard had a goal and an assist, and Jack Skille and scored for the Blue Jackets. Curtis McElhinney had 40 saves.

Savard's goal with 1:53 remaining drew Columbus within 4-3. Quick made four late saves to preserve the lead.


Carter, a former Blue Jackets player continually booed by Columbus fans for asking to be traded, helped the Kings win the Stanley Cup after the deal three years ago. He has scored seven goals in 12 games against the Blue Jackets.

Carter hadn't had a point in the previous four games, but he raised his career point total to 498.

Hanging on to a 3-2 lead heading into the third period, the Kings quickly doubled their edge. Brown, at the top of the left circle, fed another former Blue Jackets player -- Marian Gaborik -- for a shot, with the deep rebound glancing directly to Brown, who was crashing the net. His rising shot beat McElhinney for his ninth of the season at 1:49.

After Savard scored late, Quick made timely saves on Ryan Johansen's wrist shot, and against Artem Anisimov from in close. He also muffled a shot by Savard.

The Blue Jackets, who had won their last two games by a combined score of 11-2, appeared to be off and running toward another productive offensive night when they scored 1:40 in.

Skille, skating along the boards on the right wing, slid a pass toward Alexander Wennberg, who was shadowed at the left corner of the net by defenseman Jamie McBain. Skating backward, McBain prevented Wennberg from getting to the pass, but the puck glanced off his left skate and into the net.

Just 32 seconds later, the Kings tied it. Carter was being booed while carrying the puck through the right circle when he whipped a quick pass to King, who had slipped behind defenseman Cody Goloubef, for a jam shot and his eighth goal.

King then skated with the puck through the left circle before slipping a pass to Toffoli for his 15th of the season at 8:01.

Quick made a nice save on Jordan Leopold's wrist shot from the high slot that would have tied it, with Wennberg's shot midway through the period catching the crossbar.

The teams traded goals in the second -- scored by the player cheered the most and the one booed the most.

Hartnell earned his 571st career point when he took Johansen's pass and waited a moment before beating Quick with a low shot that tied it at 14:16. He had been recognized for playing in his 1,000th game early in the opening period and received a loud ovation from a crowd of 14,703.

But just as they did in the second period, the Kings quickly countered.

McNabb, filling in for defenseman Alec Martinez (concussion symptoms), led Carter with a perfect cross-crease pass. Carter extended his stick to push it past McElhinney 78 seconds after Hartnell's goal to put the Kings up for good.

NOTES: Los Angeles improved to 7-12-6 on the road. ... The injury-hindered Blue Jackets placed D Ryan Murray on the injured list earlier Monday. He will be out 4 to 6 weeks with a high ankle sprain. ... The Kings have nine players who have played at least 50 of their 53 games. Columbus has four players to do it in 52 games. ... The officials allowed the Blue Jackets' Jared Boll and Kings' Kyle Clifford to throw punches for a couple of minutes late in the first, with Boll landing a crunching right near the end that bloodied Clifford's face.