Kings run winning streak to 5 gamesJeff Carter scored the tie-breaking goal midway through the third period and the Los Angeles Kings beat the Toronto Maple Leafs, 3-1, Wednesday night for their fifth straight victory. Carter beat former teammate Jonathan Bernier with a wrist shot between the legs on a 2-on-1 break at 9:40 for his eighth of the season. Maple Leafs defenseman Paul Ranger failed to keep the puck in the Los Angeles end, creating the odd-man rush.
Kyle Clifford added an insurance goal with 1:59 remaining and Drew Doughty also scored for Los Angeles before 19,375 at the Air Canada Center. Following a 6-0 victory Tuesday night in Montreal, the Kings improved to 12-1-4 in their last 17 games.
Martin Jones, a 23-year-old rookie, made 38 saves to earn his fourth win in four NHL starts. Jones came into the game with a .973 save percentage and 0.65 goals-against average. He had stopped 73 of 75 shots and hadn’t been beaten in 142 minutes, 46 seconds.
Cody Franson scored his first of the season for Toronto in the second period. The Maple Leafs were without captain and top defenseman Dion Phaneuf, who was serving the first half of a two-game suspension for a hit on Boston’s Kevan Miller last weekend. But forward Joffrey Lupul returned after a seven-game absence due to a groin tear.
The Maple Leafs showed more jump than a Los Angeles team that was playing for the second night in a row. Toronto outshot the Kings, 39-23, but was unable to convert most of its chances.
Los Angeles scored first on the power play at 10:30 of the first period, on a high wrist shot by Doughty from the top of the circle. It was his sixth goal of the season and the 200th point of his 396-game career.
Peter Holland was in the box for holding. Toronto’s penalty-killing unit came into the game ranked 26th in the NHL. Jones stopped Nikolai Kulemin from point-blank range twice later in the period.