Calgary Flames narrowly defeat LA Kings 6-5

CALGARY — Tyler Toffoli and Elias Lindholm led the way with a goal and two assists each as the Calgary Flames claimed four goals in the first period and then withstood a furious late push from the Los Angeles Kings to hang on for a 6-5 victory.

Jonathan Huberdeau, Andrew Mangiapane, Brett Ritchie and Adam Ruzicka also scored for Calgary (7-6-2), which has won consecutive games after snapping a seven-game winless skid.

Arthur Kaliyev with a pair, Kevin Fiala, Anze Kopitar and Adrian Kempe supplied the offence for Los Angeles (10-7-1).

The Kings' had their four-game winning streak came to an end.

Jacob Markstrom gets the win to improve to 6-3-2, with 24 stops including a sprawling stop off Kopitar from 10 feet out when he ended up all alone with 22 seconds remaining.

Jonathan Quick, with 23 saves, took the loss to fall to 6-5-1.

A story line entering the night was how Flames coach Darryl Sutter had revamped three of his forward lines in conjunction with Huberdeau's return to the line-up after a three-game absence due to an upper-body injury.

The changes worked. Having only scored more than four goals as a team once all season and that came in the season opener against the Colorado Avalanche when they scored five, Calgary got an even-strength goal from of its four lines in the first period as the Flames stormed out to a 4-2 lead.

With just one goal in his first 11 games, Huberdeau opened the scoring at 3:49, taking a pass from Rasmus Andersson and ripping a shot past Quick.

After the Kings struck twice in 78 seconds to grab its first lead, back roared the Flames with Mangiapane and Ritchie responding 42 seconds apart to retake the lead. Before the first period ended, Toffoli one-timed a pass from Lindholm past Quick on a two-on to make it a two-goal cushion.

The second period featured more offensive chemistry between Toffoli and Lindholm.

At 1:51 on the power play, Lindholm got the puck from Toffoli and from the top of the crease swatted in his sixth goal.

Fiala got Los Angeles back to within two goals at 14:26 but two minutes later, Calgary restored its three-goal lead when Toffoli and Lindholm combined to set-up Ruzicka for his second goal in as many games and fifth point in his last three games.

Ruzicka's success in that spot, which was previously occupied by Huberdeau before he got injured, led to all the line shuffling as Sutter wanted to keep that trio together coming off a couple solid games together.

Instead, Huberdeau joined a line centered by Mikael Backlund with veteran Trevor Lewis on the other wing.

The Kings got third period goals from Kopitar at 8:57 and Kempe, with the goalie pulled, at 18:41, but the rally would come up one goal shy.

NIGHT OF MILESTONES

Huberdeau's goal was the 200th of his career. He's the eighth player from the NHL's 2011 draft class to reach that figure. Nazem Kadri's two assists gives him 300 on his career, the seventh member of the 2009 draft class to hit that total. Flames defenceman Nikita Zadorov played in his 500th NHL game.

ANDERSSON PILING UP ASSISTS

Andersson hadn't topped 17 assists in a season before a career season last year saw him pile up 46 helpers. This season, the 26-year-old Swede has elevated his game even further with his assist giving him 12 in 15 games, which puts him on pace for more than 65 over a full season. Al MacInnis (75) in 1990-91 and Gary Suter (70) in 1987-88 are the only two Flames defencemen in franchise history to top 65 assists in a season.

UP NEXT

Kings: LA's four-game road trip continues on Wednesday when they travel to Edmonton to take on the Oilers.

Flames: Calgary kicks off a six-game Eastern road trip against the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday. .

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 14, 2022.

Darren Haynes, The Canadian Press