ST. LOUIS (Neth.) – Dustin Brown scored two goals and veteran Jonathan Quick stopped 31 shots before his 54th shutout of his career, taking the Los Angeles Kings to a 3-0 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Monday night.
It was the second shutout this season for the 35-year old Quick, who helped the Kings win two Stanley Cup championships in his career.
"Quick had to make some big saves there in the past 10 minutes," said Brown. “They have a very good team there. They know how to come back in games like that. What we got right late was make quick line changes. We stayed fresh there. "
Gabriel Vilardi added a goal for the Kings, who scored in each period and extended their winning streak to five games. Brown ended the score with an empty goal at 6:57 pm from the third.
"We're not surprised," Kings coach Todd McLellan said of the Los Angeles winning streak. “We have some confidence. Everyone is in sync. We are structurally quite healthy. We make plays. We get good keepers. Our special teams give us a boost most evenings. Is that surprising? Not for us, but maybe a little for the hockey world. "
Vilardi pushed in a loose puck while falling outside the fold at 5:30 pm of the first period. The power play goal gave the Kings a 1-0 lead. Los Angeles has scored 16 power play goals in 17 games this season. The Kings' lone game without scoring a power play goal was against Minnesota on January 16.
The goal broke a streak for St. Louis. The Blues' penalty kill was perfect in five consecutive games (10 for 10) before conceding the Vilardi goal.
St. Louis 'opponents have scored first in 12 of the Blues' 19 games.
A giveaway by Zach Sanford led to Kings' second goal.
"You definitely need to make better plays with the puck and make better decisions," said St. Louis coach Craig Berube. "You flip pucks in the D-zone, that clearly causes problems."
Brown made a nifty move to keep his way to the net and score an unassisted goal on a wrist shot that slid through goalkeeper Jordan Binnington, giving the Kings a 2-0 lead at 6:54 p.m.
“Going to the net is a big part of my game,” said Brown. "I don't think I have scored a goal further than 3 meters from the net."
McLellan is happy for 36-year-old Brown.
"Most importantly, he still likes to play the game. Really," said McLellan. "It's miserable when you lose. If you win it doesn't matter how old you are, you have a lot of fun doing and he seems to be doing that now. "
Binnington, who left the ice with 2:49 to go, had won three consecutive games against the Kings. Binnington has saved 28 times.
It was the third time that St. Louis has been excluded this season.
"I thought Quick had made some big saves for them and kept us on zero," Berube said. "But that said, we have to find rebounds and things and get secondary shot chances, and we just haven't gotten enough of that tonight."
Brayden Schenn about Carl Gunnarsson, who left the game tonight with an injury: "The man is an absolute warrior, so it's hard to see a man who plays hard every night, gives everything, goes down like this." #stlblues pic.twitter.com/K6jFIh6XX4
– FOX Sports Midwest (@FSMidwest) February 23, 2021
The Blues announced on Monday that LW Sammy Blais, 24, had a false positive, so he's not on the NHL's COVID-19 protocol list. He was placed on the list on Saturday. He was the first Blues player on the COVID list this year.
St. Louis D Carl Gunnarsson sustained a lower body injury while fighting for the puck along the boards behind the Blues net with 9:20 left in the second period. He needed help from trainers to get off the ice and never came back. … The Blues are left without F Jaden Schwartz (lower body) and D Colton Parayko (not disclosed). This was the fifth game Schwartz missed and the third for Parayko. … Kings F Jaret Anderson-Dolan (upper body) and F Martin Frk (lower body) were out.
Brown played in his 1,200th regular season game, joining five other active players who have reached the plateau. He became the 14th American to reach 1,200 games, and the only active one to do so. Over his 1,200 matches, all with the Kings, Brown has scored a total of 669 points and set the Kings' franchise record in games played.
“I feel good on the ice. I've been playing in this league for a while, & # 39; said Brown. “Knowing the game is enormous at this level. You get better if you pay attention. I think I play much better than when I started. You always work to get better every year. If you put the work in, you can excel. "
Los Angeles D Sean Walker has been activated from injured reserve. Walker took a punch in the face in January and missed eight games. … D Austin Strand has been assigned to the taxi crew.
RW Vladimir Tarasenko (shoulder) was back on the ice for the morning skate on Monday. He was engaged in his preparatory work towards a possible return in the not-too-distant future. Taraskenko is still recovering from surgery he had on his left shoulder five months ago, his third surgery there and the second since October 27, 2019.… Blues C Tyler Bozak, who hasn't played since a big hit by Mark Stone on Jan 26, was also on the ice Monday morning.
The Blues wore their reversed retro red uniforms for the second and last time this season. This was a new run of four uniforms in four games for Blauw-Zwart. They wore their road jersey on February 15 in Arizona, their regular home jerseys on Thursday, their heritage blues on Saturday and the retros on Monday. With the Blues wearing their red jerseys, the Kings faced teams wearing their Reverse Retro jerseys in back-to-back matches. The Coyotes wore their purple concept on Saturday, the first time an opponent had worn their Reverse Retro sweaters against the Kings.
The Blues and Kings will play at the Enterprise Center again on Wednesday evening.