Bruins Blast Kings, 4-1, Continue Strong Start For Cassidy

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak scored their 26th goals of the season, and the Boston Bruins improved to 5-1-0 under interim coach Bruce Cassidy with a 4-1 victory over the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday night.

Anton Khudobin made 27 saves in his second start since Christmas for the Bruins, who nursed an early lead to their first win in Los Angeles since March 24, 2012.

Pastrnak punctuated a strong all-around game with his seventh power-play goal of the season early in the second period. Dominic Moore ended his 26-game goal drought with an empty-net score, and David Krejci added another empty-netter with 7.2 seconds left.

Kevin Gravel scored his first NHL goal and Peter Budaj stopped 21 shots for the Kings, who have lost six of eight.

Los Angeles’ playoff hopes have taken a hit during the rough stretch. The Kings have a home-heavy schedule down the stretch, but they’ve lost seven of 11 at Staples Center.

Boston’s unbeaten start under Cassidy ended one night earlier in Anaheim, but the Bruins responded with another strong defensive game in front of their backup goalie.

Khudobin was solid in just his ninth start of the season for the Bruins, who have relied heavily on All-Star Tuukka Rask in net. Khudobin, the former Anaheim Ducks backup, boosted his .888 save percentage with a handful of big stops against the scoring-challenged Kings, who have five goals in their last four games.

After Marchand put the Bruins ahead early on a 2-on-1 rush, Gravel scored on a rebound of rookie Adrian Kempe’s shot. Gravel’s goal was the defenseman’s first of his 45-game career with the Kings, who drafted him in the fifth round in 2010.

Pastrnak reclaimed the lead for Boston early in the second. The high-scoring forward broke his stick on the one-timer, but the changeup effect on the puck fooled Budaj just enough to allow Pastrnak to tie Patrice Bergeron for the team lead in power-play goals.

Los Angeles managed just one shot in the first 15 minutes of the third period, and Moore sealed it with 1:02 to play on his first goal since Dec. 20.

NOTES: Boston F Riley Nash was a healthy scratch for the first time this season. He scored 10 points while playing in all 60 games for the Bruins this season, but had just one assist in the last eight games. … Los Angeles’ Darryl Sutter coached his 1,263rd game, passing Jacques Lemaire for sole possession of 13th place in NHL history. … Kempe’s assist was his second NHL point. He was drafted by the Kings four spots after the Bruins picked Pastrnak in 2014. … Jeff Zatkoff was the Kings’ backup goalie. Los Angeles placed Zatkoff on waivers earlier in the week, but didn’t send him to the AHL after he cleared.

UP NEXT

Bruins: At Stars on Sunday.

Kings: Host Ducks on Saturday.

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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