UNIONDALE, NY – Just when they looked like they were done, the Kings played some of their best hockey of the year in the final 20 minutes tonight at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in a thrilling, gutsy, and poised three-goal comeback to defeat the New York Islanders 3-2.
The Kings were aching for a boost, something to bring the team back to life. The first two periods tonight against the Islanders didn’t capture a cohesive Kings team. After 40 minutes, the Kings found themselves facing a two-goal deficit – which felt much larger considering their recent struggles to find the back of the net.
They came out a different team to start the third period. The first testament to that came off the stick of Slava Voynov, who put the Kings on the board slamming home an Anze Kopitar pass that was delivered from behind the net, cutting New York’s lead in half.
Now, the jump in their step was more than back.
They were flying.
The youth of this club, which has provided much-needed energy and output during this roster’s battle with injuries, finished the job, sealing a more than impressive comeback victory.
Tanner Pearson, playing in his first NHL game since being called up from the Manchester Monarchs Wednesday, tied the contest with 7:45 remaining as his snap shot trickled past New York netminder Kevin Poulin. This was Pearson’s first NHL point and goal, and it couldn’t have come at a better time.
Tyler Toffoli put the Kings ahead for good, extending his point streak to five games and putting the Kings on top with just 1:27 remaining in the contest by tipping home a Jake Muzzin shot from the point.
The Islanders had no time to respond, and the Kings skated away with two points in one of their gutsiest, most poised victories of the young season.
Ben Scrivens was impressive in his first start since Jonathan Quick fell to injury Tuesday night, stopping 23 of New York’s 25 shots. Scrivens faced a heavy barrage of pressure from the Islanders throughout the first 40 minutes, making it possible for the Kings to have a chance at winning the game entering the third period.
PUPPY LOVE: Tyler Toffoli now has seven points (3G, 4A) in his five games with the Kings since being called up from Manchester, recording at least one point in each of his games. Tanner Pearson, playing in his first career NHL regular season game tonight, scored his first career NHL goal. Linden Vey, with two assists tonight, has three points (3A) in three games since joining the roster.