The LA Kings went into Colorado and left with two HUGE points as they defeated the defending Stanley Cup champions, 5-2.

Goal Breakdown

First period:

LAK: Adrian Kempe (31), ASST: Anze Kopitar (34), Matt Roy (14)

LAK: Gabriel Vilardi (22), ASST: Anze Kopitar (35), Quinton Byfield (15)

Second period:

COL: Evan Rodrigues (13), ASST: Samuel Girard (24), Alex Newhook (13)

Third period:

LAK: Adrian Kempe (32), ASST: Vladislav Gavrikov (8), Anze Kopitar (36)

COL: PP Nathan MacKinnon (27), ASST: Cale Makar (37), Mikko Rantanen (32)

LAK: Philip Danault (17), ASST: Jordan Spence (1), Kevin Fiala (46)

LAK: EN Philip Danault (18), ASST: Trevor Moore (14)



LAK: 5

COL: 2


LAK: 31

COL: 30


LAK: 0/4

COL: 1/3

Here are the three takeaways from Thursday’s 5-2 win:

Can Adrian Kempe hit 40?

After a 35-goal campaign last year, Adrian Kempe has continued to prove last year was no fluke. That top line of Anze Kopitar, Quinton Byfield, and Kempe has been the Kings’ best line of late and found the back of the net twice last night. Kempe scored both goals to bring his season total to 32 on the season. The first goal was a 2-on-1 in which a great stick handle and delay with the puck by Kopitar allowed a passing lane to open up to Kempe and all he had to do was not miss the open cage.

While his second goal wasn’t a designed play, Kempe made a pass from behind the net, goes straight to the front of the net, and gets good positioning on Devon Toews to get the goal.

With just 16 games left, can Kempe hit 40 goals? He is only eight away and if he does hit the 40-goal plateau, he’ll be the first LA Kings player to hit 40 goals in a season since Luc Robitaille scored 44 goals in the 1993-94 season.

No panic

Even though the Kings were up 2-1 after two periods, nobody felt comfortable with the lead because any lead against Colorado isn’t safe. Starting the third period off strong was a critical point for the Kings as Colorado, at home, was expected to come out with a push of their own. It was important for the Kings to not sit back and allow the Avalanche to dictate the pace. Adrian Kempe scored just 24 seconds into the third period, but Nathan MacKinnon responded exactly four minutes later on the power play to bring the Avalanche back within a goal.

However, the Kings struck back 15 seconds later as Philip Danault re-directed Jordan Spence’s shot from the point to give the Kings their two-goal lead back. As the period went on the Kings were able to utilize the 1-3-1 tactic and play to their identity. What I was impressed with was the Kings did not panic after that power-play goal. Sure the Avalanche got their chances (which you would expect) but the Kings didn’t panic and allow that Nathan MacKinnon goal to change momentum. That is how you defeat the defending cup champions at home.

Kevin Fiala’s status

Kings fans got a major scare in the second period as Andrew Cogliano and Kevin Fiala collided knee-on-knee which resulted in Fiala being helped off the ice and down to the locker room. Although Fiala did come back and got an assist in the third period, he only played two shifts and didn’t look comfortable. He didn’t finish the game.

We’ll see what happens within these next 24 hours.

UP NEXT: The LA Kings return home to start a seven-game homestand against the Nashville Predators. The game starts at 7:30 pm PT and can be seen on Bally Sports West.

Featured image credit: David Zalubowski/Associated Press 

1 thought on “Takeaways: LA Kings 5, Avalanche 2 – A big win on the road

  1. Kings just reached elite status by winning 5 in a row & beating the Avs at their mile high barn in a decisive manner. That changes if Fiala misses some games. Btw, Spence played well and Gavrikov was ok against a very fast & skilled Avs team. Korpi is making a case to be #1 goalie for the Kings, imho.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *