Recap: LA Kings vs Florida Panthers
LOS ANGELES – He couldn’t have done it in truer form.
Jonathan Quick became the Kings’ all-time winningest goaltender in franchise history in the most superb of fashions, one that he’s rather accustomed to.
It was another flawless effort for Quick, his fifth shutout of the season, and the 30th of his young and illustrious career in the Kings’ crease, stopping all 24 of Florida’s shots at STAPLES Center Saturday afternoon.
Quick, after passing Rogie Vachon for the franchise mark in career wins this afternoon, is now just two shutouts behind the Kings’ former goaltender, who had a career mark of 32.
It was the 11th shutout of the season for Kings goaltenders, which matches the club record set during the 2011-2012 season.
Offense is what stole the show for the Kings early on, as Roberto Luongo made his first visit to STAPLES Center in a Panthers uniform since being traded from the Vancouver Canucks on March 4.
Luongo, who made three starts against the Kings earlier in the season in a Canucks uniform, dropped each and every one of those decisions.
Things didn’t get much better for Luongo against the Kings today in a Florida uniform.
Mike Richards, who was demoted to the fourth line today, followed Lewis’ suit, scoring the Kings’ second goal of the afternoon. Richards carried the puck in from the corner, straddled the goal line, and stuff the puck between Luongo’s legs to give the Kings a 2-0 lead with 2:44 minutes remaining in the first period.
It was Richards’ 10th goal of the season, his first point in seven games.
The Kings would add another goal in the second period, as Dustin Brown hopped on a rebound from Jarret Stoll’s failed scoring attempt, slamming home the Kings’ third goal of the afternoon on an empty net.
Alec Martinez would finish the scoring for the Kings, adding a fourth and final marker against the Panthers with 8:01 remaining in regulation time.
Martinez, who received a pass from Slava Voynov, walked in calmly from the point and fired a snap shot up and over Luongo’s right shoulder. It was Martinez’s ninth goal of the season, and he now leads all Kings defensemen in goals scored.
The Kings, in their two meetings against the Panthers this season, didn’t allow a single goal to Florida. Ben Scrivens stopped all 20 Florida shots in the Kings’ 3-0 win on October 13, and Quick stopped all 24 Florida shots in the Kings’ 4-0 win Saturday afternoon.
After a five-game home stand that saw the Kings go 2-3-0, they are now heading east for a three games in four nights road trip to Philadelphia, Washington, and Pittsburgh.
The Kings’ record now stands at 40-25-6, which is good for 86 points, situating them at sixth-place in the Western Conference. The Kings lead the Phoenix Coyotes by seven points for the Pacific Division’s third and final guaranteed playoff spot.