(SportsNetwork.com) - The red-hot Los Angeles Kings will try to extend their
winning streak to a season-high seven games when they visit the Edmonton
Oilers for Sunday's clash at Rexall Place.
The Kings have won six in a row, matching a run from Dec. 2-14 for their
longest winning streak of the season. The last five wins of the surge have
come since the NHL returned from its Olympic break late last month.
Another win on Sunday would give the Kings their longest winning streak since
taking nine in a row from Jan. 21-Feb. 6, 2010.
Thanks in part to its recent hot streak, Los Angeles is still six points ahead
of Dallas for third place in the Pacific Division. The top-three teams from
all four divisions make the playoffs, while the remaining two spots in each
conference are wild cards.
The Kings picked up their most recent win Thursday night in Winnipeg, as L.A.
kicked off a three-game road trip with a 3-1 decision over the Jets at MTS
Mike Richards and Dustin Brown each netted second-period goals, giving
Jonathan Quick and the Kings all the support they would need for the victory
in Winnipeg. Alec Martinez added a power-play goal later on to sew up the win.
Quick was lightly tested, but aided the cause by stopping 17-of-18 shots.
"In the third we kind of slowed down a bit and maybe sat back a bit," Richards
said. "But I thought we played well. We didn't do much with (the puck), other
than kept it simple and got back to the net with it."
The win improved L.A. to 17-12-3 on the road this season. The Kings will
complete their trip tomorrow night in Calgary.
The Kings have won both meetings against Edmonton so far in 2013-14, but this
marks the first encounter of the season at Rexall Place. L.A. has won four
straight and six of seven overall in the series and the Kings have claimed
eight of the past 10 meetings in Edmonton.
The Oilers, who are last in the Western Conference and 20 points out of a
playoff spot, have been playing well lately, winning two straight and seven of
their last 11 games.
Taylor Hall notched the game-winner at 2:31 of overtime in Edmonton's most
recent victory, as the Oilers downed the visiting New York Islanders 3-2 on
Thursday. Edmonton scored three unanswered goals to top the Isles in OT.
Sam Gagner took the puck off Islanders defenseman Brian Strait in transition
through the neutral zone and deked past a sliding defender to fire a shot that
deflected off Hall's stick and past Evgeni Nabokov into the net.
Philip Larsen and Ryan Smyth both lit the lamp in the third period and Ben
Scrivens turned aside 32 shots for the win.
"I'd rather we didn't wait until the last four minutes of the second period to
get going," Oilers head coach Dallas Eakins said. "We have been preaching the
way to play and it wasn't until near the end of the second that we understood
what we needed to do and we carried it on to the third."
Smyth moved past Wayne Gretzky to tie Glenn Anderson for first place on the
Oilers all-time power-play goal list with 126 tallies.
Edmonton is 2-1-1 on a five-game homestand that ends tonight. The Oilers are
12-15-3 as the host this season.
The Sports Network