On a night when the focus was on streaks, the Los Angeles Kings ended two of them while keeping the Philadelphia Flyers out of the record book.
Adrian Kempe on Monday jumped out of the penalty box and scored a key goal in the third period, while Jonathan Quick made 36 saves as the Kings ended the Flyers’ six-game winning streak with a 4-1 victory.
Alec Martinez, Trevor Lewis and Tyler Toffoli also scored for the Kings, who had won eight straight games before starting their four-game trip 0-2-1.
“We talked about it all [on Sunday] and again today, about how important this game was,” said Kings coach John Stevens, whose team moved two points ahead of idle Vegas at the top of the Pacific Division. “We played a really good, solid, team game.”
Jakub Voracek scored a power-play goal and Brian Elliott stopped 21 shots for the Flyers, who were trying to tie an NHL record by becoming the first team since the 1966-1967 Toronto Maple Leafs to immediately follow a 10-game winless streak with seven straight victories.
“I think we’ve played really good hockey over the past 10 days, two weeks,” Voracek said. “We’ve just got to make sure we don’t get stuck on losing. We have to find a way to win on Wednesday and hopefully start another streak.”
With the Kings leading 2-1, Kempe finished serving a cross-checking penalty and scored his 11th goal on an odd-man rush at 4 minutes, 48 seconds.
“It was a good opportunity,” he said.
Toffoli scored his 16th with 4:29 left to put it away, with Nick Shore getting his second assist.
The Flyers had more chances — they held a 37-25 edge in shots — but they could not convert against Quick in another twist to their topsy-turvy season.
“He was good tonight. He made a few big saves,” Philadelphia center Sean Couturier said of Quick, who shut out the Flyers on Oct. 5. “It was tough finding those rebounds.”
The Kings scored twice on their first seven shots. Martinez got his third directly off Torrey Mitchell’s faceoff win over Scott Laughton, while Lewis beat Elliott short side to make it 2-0.
Voracek, who entered with an NHL-high 33 assists, picked up his eighth goal with 1:56 left in the first period after collecting Claude Giroux’s deflected shot.
That gave Stevens a happy return to Philadelphia. The first-year Kings coach guided the Flyers to the 2008 Eastern Conference final before being fired the following season.
“I think anytime you play one of your old clubs you have a little bit extra want going into the game,” Martinez said. “John has been unbelievable for us. He’s come in here, stepped in and encouraged an environment that’s very positive.”
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