Los Angeles Kings vs. Anaheim Ducks

LA
6
ANH
2
FINAL
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LA 3216
ANH 0112

Justin Williams, Jeff Carter and Mike Richards scored in an overwhelming first period, and the Los Angeles Kings advanced to their third straight Western Conference finals with a 6-2 victory over the Anaheim Ducks in Game 7.

3:10 | May 17, 2014 | Anaheim Ducks, Hockey, Los Angeles Kings, NHL


Three Stars



ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) Sitting in another jubilant dressing room deep inside another dazed road arena, Anze Kopitar simply stopped trying to explain the Los Angeles Kings' big-game brilliance.

In nearly every tight playoff spot over the last three years, his Kings have emerged and advanced - even when they end the career of hockey icon Teemu Selanne along the way.

Kopitar knows the Kings' tenacity can't be easily defined, and it's almost impossible to capture. But it has taken them all the way back to the Western Conference finals after they finished off the rival Anaheim Ducks in grand style, 6-2 in Game 7 on Friday night.

"It's hard to say what it is, but it's all in this room," said Kopitar, the Kings' leading scorer. "We don't look outside too much. We believe in this room. We knew this would have to be our best game of the series, and it was."

Justin Williams, Jeff Carter and Mike Richards scored in an overwhelming first period. The Kings advanced to their third straight conference finals by improving to a jaw-dropping 6-0 when facing elimination this spring. Los Angeles has won two seven-game series as it heads to Chicago for Game 1 on Sunday.

Kopitar, Marian Gaborik and Tanner Pearson also scored, and Jonathan Quick made 25 saves to help the Kings claim the first postseason Freeway Faceoff series with back-to-back wins over their top-seeded Southern California rivals.

"We're built for the playoffs, for sure," Kings defenseman Drew Doughty said. "We struggled during the regular season. I don't know the reason why, but we're always ready for when it really counts."

The Kings added to their 7-1 record in elimination games over the past two years, showing the remarkable poise that has led to eight playoff series victories in three seasons. They earned a rematch with the Blackhawks, who eliminated them in five games last spring.

The 2012 Stanley Cup champions led 5-0 late in the second period in Anaheim, never allowing the Ducks to get going in their own building. Los Angeles shredded rookie goalie John Gibson for four goals in the first 22:02, and the Ducks lost a Game 7 for the second straight year.

"Really tough emotions right now," said captain Ryan Getzlaf, who scored one goal in the series. "They came out and played the way they can play. They know what they're doing in these situations."

The defeat likely ended the career of the 43-year-old Selanne, who intends to retire. Both teams paid tribute to the Finnish Flash after he took the final shift, eventually waving a melancholy goodbye to his Anaheim fans.

"It's got to be a lot of happiness later, but it is hard right now," Selanne said. "It was going to be ending in a great celebration or a big disappointment, and we didn't get the win."

Kings fans' chants of "This is our house!" echoed through Honda Center, where the Ducks were one of the NHL's best home teams during the best regular season in franchise history.

The Kings got stellar performances from their best big-game players. Quick improved to 3-0 in Game 7s. Williams kicked off the first-period onslaught with his sixth goal in six career trips to Game 7. Williams also has six assists in those deciding games.

"I'm proud of my numbers in Game 7, but the one I'm most proud of is 6-0," Williams said.

Gaborik scored six goals in the series' four games in Anaheim, giving him an NHL-best nine goals in his first postseason with the Kings. Gaborik, Williams and Richards are unbeaten in six career trips to Game 7; Carter improved to 4-0.

The 20-year-old Gibson was overmatched, yielding four goals on 18 shots before getting pulled for Jonas Hiller, the dependable veteran benched twice by coach Bruce Boudreau in the season's final weeks. Boudreau dropped to 1-5 in his six career trips to Game 7s with Washington and Anaheim, losing all five times at home.

"The first period was like men against boys, quite frankly," Boudreau said. "They were bigger, stronger, more determined. Everything we said we didn't want to do, we did."

Corey Perry scored early in the third period, but also missed a penalty shot and got denied on a second-period breakaway on his 29th birthday. Kyle Palmieri scored late in the second period.

The game was an unsightly farewell to Selanne, whose 21-season NHL career began in Winnipeg in 1992 and included parts of 15 seasons in Anaheim. He scored 684 regular-season goals, but had just two goals in 12 playoff games this spring.

"It will be great memories I will live with for the rest of my life," Selanne said. "I would never have expected to have this kind of career. I am very thankful for that."

Game 7 also might have been a finale for Saku Koivu. The 39-year-old Finnish center said he'll wait several weeks before deciding whether he'll retire after 18 NHL seasons.

NOTES: The Kings again played without injured veteran defensemen Willie Mitchell, who missed his eighth straight game, and Robyn Regehr (sixth straight). ... Los Angeles is the 17th team in NHL history to win a Game 7 twice in the same postseason run. The New York Rangers also have done it this spring. ... The visiting team has won five of the six Game 7s in the current playoffs.

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1st Period Summary
Time Team Scoring Detail LA Anh
4:30
Justin Williams
Assists: Mike Richards, Slava Voynov
1 0
8:48
Jeff Carter
Assists: Marian Gaborik, Tyler Toffoli
2 0
15:12
Mike Richards
Assists: Dwight King, Kyle Clifford
3 0
Time Team Penalty
2:47
Ben Lovejoy: 2 minutes for Hooking
19:00
Saku Koivu: 2 minutes for Interference

2nd Period Summary
Time Team Scoring Detail LA Anh
2:02
Anze Kopitar
Assists: Drew Doughty, Kyle Clifford
4 0
14:08
Marian Gaborik
Assists: Anze Kopitar, Alec Martinez
5 0
17:02
Kyle Palmieri
Assists: Andrew Cogliano, Nick Bonino
5 1
Time Team Penalty
5:40
Slava Voynov: 2 minutes for High-sticking
5:44
Corey Perry: 2 minutes for Boarding
7:11
Mike Richards: 2 minutes for Tripping
12:44
Kyle Palmieri: 2 minutes for Goaltender Interference
19:37
Dustin Brown: 2 minutes for Slashing

3rd Period Summary
Time Team Scoring Detail LA Anh
3:42
Corey Perry
Assists: Ryan Getzlaf, Hampus Lindholm
5 2
13:54
Tanner Pearson
Assists: Jeff Carter, Justin Williams
6 2
Time Team Penalty
3:22
Slava Voynov: 2 minutes for Cross-checking
3:22
Andrew Cogliano: 2 minutes for Slashing
4:50
Kyle Palmieri: 2 minutes for Elbowing
9:30
Nick Bonino: 2 minutes for Slashing

Game Information
Location: Honda Center Anaheim, California
Attendance: 17,395

Los Angeles players
Player POS G A PTS +/- SH PIM SHF TOI FOW FOL
Jeff Carter C 1 1 2 1 2 0 21 14:25 6 3
Justin Williams RW 1 1 2 0 4 0 21 16:37 0 0
Anze Kopitar C 1 1 2 1 2 0 24 19:54 12 6
Mike Richards C 1 1 2 1 1 2 22 14:52 10 4
Marian Gaborik RW 1 1 2 1 3 0 21 17:46 0 0
Tanner Pearson LW 1 0 1 0 1 0 11 6:10 0 0
Kyle Clifford LW 0 2 2 2 0 0 15 11:31 0 0
Drew Doughty D 0 1 1 2 1 0 31 28:01 0 0
Alec Martinez D 0 1 1 1 1 0 25 16:04 0 0
Tyler Toffoli RW 0 1 1 0 3 0 14 9:42 0 0
Slava Voynov D 0 1 1 -1 2 4 32 20:20 0 0
Dwight King LW 0 1 1 2 3 0 19 13:15 0 0
Colin Miller D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Trevor Lewis C 0 0 0 0 1 0 20 13:44 0 0
Colin Fraser C 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Brayden McNabb D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Matt Greene D 0 0 0 1 0 0 21 12:47 0 0
Willie Mitchell D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Jake Muzzin D 0 0 0 1 1 0 32 22:08 0 0
Jordan Nolan C 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Derek Forbort D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Robyn Regehr D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Andy Andreoff LW 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Scott Sabourin RW 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Jeff Schultz D 0 0 0 0 1 0 31 20:13 0 0
Nick Shore C 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Jarret Stoll C 0 0 0 -1 2 0 23 16:59 11 12
Andrew Campbell D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Linden Vey RW 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Dustin Brown LW 0 0 0 0 2 2 24 17:32 0 0
Jordan Weal C 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Andrew Bodnarchuk D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Anaheim players
Player POS G A PTS +/- SH PIM SHF TOI FOW FOL
Kyle Palmieri RW 1 0 1 1 1 4 19 11:38 0 0
Corey Perry RW 1 0 1 -2 4 2 25 20:31 0 0
Nick Bonino C 0 1 1 1 2 2 25 18:53 8 11
Hampus Lindholm D 0 1 1 0 1 0 25 15:50 0 0
Andrew Cogliano C 0 1 1 0 1 2 26 14:50 0 0
Ryan Getzlaf C 0 1 1 -2 6 0 25 20:22 8 17
Bryan Allen D 0 0 0 0 1 0 19 14:40 0 0
Mark Fistric D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Tim Jackman RW 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Saku Koivu C 0 0 0 0 0 2 12 6:37 5 3
Matt Beleskey LW 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Ben Lovejoy D 0 0 0 0 0 2 27 19:40 0 0
Patrick Maroon LW 0 0 0 0 0 0 12 7:57 0 0
Cam Fowler D 0 0 0 -2 1 0 31 25:42 0 0
Mathieu Perreault C 0 0 0 -1 1 0 18 12:22 4 8
Francois Beauchemin D 0 0 0 0 0 0 27 20:30 0 0
Rickard Rakell C 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Stephane Robidas D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Luca Sbisa D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Teemu Selanne RW 0 0 0 -1 3 0 21 14:02 0 0
Jakob Silfverberg RW 0 0 0 -1 2 0 24 15:22 0 0
Devante Smith-Pelly RW 0 0 0 -2 0 0 24 15:55 0 0
Sami Vatanen D 0 0 0 -2 3 0 28 22:48 0 0
Daniel Winnik LW 0 0 0 0 1 0 13 9:14 0 0

Los Angeles goalies
Player SA GA SV SV% TOI
Jonathan Quick 27 2 25 0.926 60:00
Anaheim goalies
Player SA GA SV SV% TOI
John Gibson 18 4 14 0.778 22:02
Jonas Hiller 12 2 10 0.833 37:58