Road-warrior Kings down Ducks yet again

Ducks defenceman Bryan Allen (55) and Kings defenceman Matt Greene (2) are called for minor...

Ducks defenceman Bryan Allen (55) and Kings defenceman Matt Greene (2) are called for minor penalties for their involvement in a post-whistle scrum during first period action in Game 2 of their second round playoff series in Anaheim on Monday, May 5, 2014. (Richard Mackson/USA TODAY Sports)

Derek Van Diest, Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 11:18 PM ET

ANAHEIM - The Anaheim Ducks figured the key to beating Jonathan Quick and the Los Angeles Kings was rooted in their own end.

Anaheim thought they would not be able to concede more than two goals in a game against the Kings and still win, because it was unlikely they would be able to score four in the case Los Angeles potted three.

On Monday, in Game 2 of their second round series, the Ducks were only able to beat Quick once, despite outshooting them badly in a 3-1 Kings victory.

The win gave the Kings a 2-0 series lead.

With the scene shifting up the road to Los Angeles for the next two games, the Ducks are officially in trouble.

Marian Gaborik, Alec Martinez and Dwight King, into an empty net, scored for the Kings in the win, while Quick turned away 36 shots. Jonas Hiller made 14 saves for the Ducks, while Patrick Maroon scored the lone goal.

Game 3 goes Thursday at the Staples Center.

Los Angeles got off to a quick start as Gaborik scored on the first shot of the game as the Honda Center was still getting revved up.

The Kings winger, who scored the late tying goal and the overtime winner in Game 1, took a pass from Anze Kopitar on the first shift of the game, blew around Ducks defenceman Ben Lovejoy and lifted a shot over Hiller.

The goal was Gaborik’s league-leading sixth of the playoffs.

The Ducks were able to shake off the bad start and responded later in the period on the power play through Maroon.

Anaheim's hulking winger was sent out to create havoc in front on a four-on-three man advantage and went on to bounce a centring pass off Kings defenceman Jake Muzzin past Quick.

The goal gave Maroon six points in eight playoff games. He set up Teemu Selanne's go-ahead goal in the opening game of the series.

After Maroon's goal, the Ducks took control of the contest, putting pressure on Quick and the Kings.

However, Los Angeles went on to score the go-ahead goal on just their fifth shot of the contest.

Jeff Carter allowed a pass out the corner go through his legs to Martinez at the point, whose shot ricocheted off Jakob Silfverberg's back as he turned away. The shot changed direction, beating Hiller.

The Ducks goaltender was making his second consecutive start after backing up rookie Frederik Andersen in the first round against the Dallas Stars.

Despite the Ducks winning the series, Andersen struggled, posting an inflated 3.40 goals against average with a .892 save percentage.

Hiller was given his starting job back and responded well in the opening game. After letting in the first goal Monday, the Ducks goaltender settled in well, turning aside the few shots he did face as the Kings went into a full defensive mode in the final two periods.

Hiller made five saves in the second period, while Quick turned away 12 shots.

Midway through the period, the Kings suffered a scare as Drew Doughty limped off the ice after taking a slash on the ankle from Francois Beauchemin.

Doughty briefly went to the Kings dressing room to be attended before returning to the game.

Late in the period, Matt Beleskey took a run at the Kings defenceman, targeting his knee.

Doughty survived the play and the Ducks survived the ensuing man advantage to keep within a goal.

The game became chippy as a lot of stick-work was let go. Corey Perry was particularly annoying for the Ducks, drawing a roughing penalty on Quick after sliding into the goaltender, then being a general pain in the backside, squirting water in the glove of Jeff Carter during a break.

Carter had placed the glove on the boards between the benches to take a drink and Perry decided to squirt water into it.

After killing off Beleskey's penalty early in the third, the Ducks poured the pressure on the Kings but were turned away by Quick over and over again.

Midway through the period, the Ducks had out-shot the Kings 30-14 yet still trailed.

King iced the game with an empty-netter.

The Kings have won six consecutive games since losing the first three games of their first-round series against the San Jose Sharks.

The Kings were only the fourth team in NHL history to battle back from a 3-0 series deficit.

derek.vandiest@sunmedia.ca

twitter.com/SUNdvandiest


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