Looking to take the series lead in their playoff home opener, the Kings took on the San Jose Sharks in Game 3 of their first-round series and lost 6-5 in overtime on Tuesday night at STAPLES Center.
Willie Mitchell and Kyle Clifford both scored goals in the first three minutes for the Kings, and Michal Handzus added a first-period goal. The Kings' Brad Richardson and San Jose's Patrick Marleau traded goals early in the second period. Ryane Clowe's second-period power-play goal made it a 4-2 game, then San Jose's Logan Couture and the Kings' Ryan Smyth quickly traded goals.
The Sharks tied the game 5-5 with two goals in the final two minutes of the second period, as Clowe scored his second goal of the game and Joe Pavelski scored.
The Sharks won the game 3:09 into overtime, as Patrick Marleau took a long stretch pass from Niclas Wallin, skated into the Kings' zone and found Devin Setoguchi skating into the play. Setoguchi whipped a wrist shot past Quick to end the game.
The series turned to Los Angeles after the teams split the two games in San Jose, and each team regained the services of a player. Jarret Stoll returned after a one-game suspension for his hit on San Jose defenseman Ian White, who missed Game 2 because of the hit.
For the third consecutive game, Jonathan Quick started in goal for the Kings, opposite San Jose's Antti Niemi.
The Kings scored two goals in the game's first three minutes, on their first two shots on goal.
First, at the 2:26 mark of the period, Mitchell jumped into the play as the Kings crossed the San Jose blue line. Mitchell took a pass from Trevor Lewis and fired a wrist shot from the left side. Niemi got a piece of the puck, but it beat him. Kevin Westgarth also got an assist.
The Kings took a 2-0 lead just 13 seconds later. The Kings crashed the net and, at the end of a scramble in front of Niemi, Brad Richardson made a centering pass and Clifford knocked it in from close range. Wayne Simmonds also got an assist.
The Kings took a 3-0 lead on Handzus' goal with 1:38 remaining in the first period. The Kings won the puck in the neutral zone, as Dustin Brown pushed it ahead to Dustin Penner. Penner carried it deep, then dropped a pass for Handzus, whose one-timer from the right side beat Niemi.
The Kings continued their scoring at the start of the second period, as Richardson scored 44 seconds in to chase Antti Niemi from the game. Niemi lost his stick and the Sharks lost the puck behind their net. Finally, Richardson controlled the puck in the high slot and beat Niemi with a wrist shot for an unassisted goal. Niemi was replaced by Antero Niittymaki after he allowed four goals on 10 shots.
San Jose got on the scoreboard when Marleau scored 3:08 into the second period. Dan Boyle held the puck at the Kings' blue line and looked to shoot, then fed a perfect pass down low to Marleau, who went to the side of the net and deflected the puck past Quick. Joe Thornton also picked up an assist to pull the Sharks within 4-1.
The Sharks pulled back within two with a power-play goal 6:53 into the second period. Clowe carried the puck out from behind the net and attempted a pass through the crease, but the puck deflected off Kings defenseman Willie Mitchell and past Quick to cut the Kings' lead to 4-2. Jason Demers also picked up an assist.
The Sharks scored their third consecutive goal to make it a 4-3 game, but the Kings answered 15 seconds later.
First, in a 4-on-4 situation, Ian White held the puck in the left side of the Kings' zone. Couture got free from Kings defenseman Jack Johnson, took a cross-ice pass from White and beat Quick with a sharp one-timer to the top corner. That made it a one-goal game with 6:22 remaining in the second period.
The Kings got their two-goal lead back 15 seconds later. Jarret Stoll took the puck deep into the Sharks zone, down the left side, then fed a perfect, cross-ice backhand pass to Smyth, who was at the side of the net and tapped it past Niittymaki to give the Kings a 5-3 lead. Johnson also picked up an assist.
At the end of a wild, seven-goal second period, the Sharks scored twice in the final 1:25 to tie the game 5-5.
First, the Sharks made it a one-goal game when cycled and controlled the puck until they finally scored with 1:25 remaining in the second period to narrow the Kings' lead to 5-4. Quick had to scramble left and right, and the Sharks finally ended up with the puck on the stick of Clowe, who shot into an essentially open net.
Then, with 31 seconds remaining in the period, White fired the puck from the half-wall toward the net. It got deflected, then fell in front of Pavelski, who settled it and beat Quick from close range to tie the game.
The Sharks outscored the Kings 5-2 in the second period and outshot them 18-8.
A scoreless third period followed, as the Sharks outshot the Kings 9-5
1 - 0 LAK
2 - 0 LAK
3 - 0 LAK
4 - 0 LAK