Los Angeles Kings Score Early, Often To Defeat Nashville Predators

Danielle ParenteauContributor IDecember 20, 2010

ST. LOUIS, MO - DECEMBER 16: Drew Doughty #8 of the Los Angeles Kings celebrates a goal against the St. Louis Blues at the Scottrade Center on December 16, 2010 in St. Louis, Missouri.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

Justin Williams opened the floodgates with the Kings’ first goal a mere 15 seconds into the start of the game Saturday in Nashville. Los Angeles ultimately won 6-1.

Center Trevor Lewis then made it 2-0 with his first goal of the season. Just 1:10 later, defenseman Drew Doughty put one in the back of the net. Less than 10 minutes into the contest L.A. already had three goals.

Nashville opted to make a change in net. Anders Lindback, who had surrendered three goals on nine shots, was replaced by Mark Dekanich. Dekanich, in his NHL debut, also gave up three goals but on 25 shots. Lindback got the loss.

Predators left wing Steve Sullivan made it 3-1 24 seconds after Doughty’s tally, but Nashville would not score again.

Left wing Ryan Smyth was credited with a power play goal after the puck deflected off his shoulder into the net. This was the first period all season in which Los Angeles scored four times.

In the second period, left wing Alexei Ponikarovsky made it 5-1. Smyth’s second mark would push the tally to the eventual final score of 6-1.

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After Dekanich stopped a shot by center Jarrett Stoll, Smyth whacked the rebound out of the air and past the goaltender. The goal was reviewed, but the on-ice call stood as it was determined that Smyth’s stick was below the crossbar when he hit the puck.

The Kings did not score in the third period.

According to Kings.com writer Rich Hammond, L.A. “tied their season highs for goals scored and margin of victory.”

Lewis, Smyth, Ponikarovsky, Doughty, Stoll, and captain/right wing Dustin Brown all had two points for Los Angeles. Of the Kings' 12 forwards in the game, only left wing Kyle Clifford and center Anze Kopitar were kept off the scoreboard.

L.A. ended the Preds franchise record points streak at 10. Nashville was 8-0-2 in their 10 previous games. The Predators had also won all of their last five home games.

Kings netminder Jonathan Bernier made 29 saves for the win, starting in place of Jonathan Quick, who had the night off.

The three stars of the night were Smyth, Doughty and Lewis.

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