1st Place Panthers Beat Kings 3-1
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SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) — Sean Bergenheim and Mike Santorelli scored in the second period, sending the Florida Panthers to a 3-1 victory over the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday night.
Matt Bradley also scored for the Panthers and Scott Clemmensen stopped 22 shots. Florida beat the Kings for the first time in eight tries, snapping a seven-game losing streak to them that dated to Nov. 27, 2002.
Florida regained first place in the Southeast Division from the Washington Capitals, who lost to Winnipeg 3-2.
Drew Doughty scored for the Kings and Jonathan Quick made nine saves. Quick was replaced by Jonathan Bernier to start the third period, and he stopped 11 shots. The Kings have scored one goal or no goals six times in their last 10 games. They are the lowest-scoring team in the NHL with 119 goals.
The Panthers took a 1-0 lead on Bergenheim’s goal in the second. Marcel Goc brought the puck toward the net but lost control of it. The puck then glanced off the skate of a Kings player and back to Bergenheim. His slap shot from the high slot beat Quick on the glove side at 4:52.
The Panthers stretched their lead to 2-0 on Santorelli’s goal at 17:14 of the second. Tomas Fleischmann grabbed a loose puck behind the net and passed it out to Santorelli in the left circle. He one-timed it over Quick’s shoulder and into the net.
Doughty scored for the Kings at 17:32 of the third. He took a pass from Dustin Brown from the sideboards and fired a wrist shot from the slot. The puck bounced past Clemmensen to make the score 2-1.
Bradley’s empty-net goal came at 19:12 to seal the win.
There weren’t many offensive chances for either team in the first two periods. Florida scored twice on 11 shots, while the Kings took just 14 shots.
Notes: Kings C Mike Richards played in his 500th career game. … Florida’s Jose Theodore, sidelined with a knee injury since Dec. 31, was activated and backed up Clemmensen. … Florida D Keaton Ellerby played in his 100th career game.