DALLAS (AP) — Darcy Kuemper made 28 saves in his ninth career shutout, leading the Los Angeles Kings to a 3-0 victory over the Dallas Stars on Tuesday night.
Paul LaDue, Drew Doughty and Alec Martinez scored as Los Angeles (27-18-5) earned its second straight win. The Kings are among a group of playoff contenders with 59 points, one point behind Dallas.
Ben Bishop made 39 saves for the Stars (28-19-4), who dropped their second straight game, but retained a tenuous one-point lead for the Western Conference’s first wild card.
Dallas came up empty on each of its four power plays against the NHL’s best penalty killers.
LaDue scored just 3:05 into the game. Anze Kopitar skated from behind the net almost to the left point, and passed across to LaDue in the right faceoff circle. He sent a wrist shot inside the left goalpost.
Los Angeles increased its lead to 2-0 after Dallas forward Alexander Radulov was sent off for holding in the second. Doughty’s shot from above the right circle deflected in off Bishop as Stars defenseman Stephen Johns tried to prevent the puck from crossing the goal line.
The Kings were unable to score during a four-minute power play midway through the second. Los Angeles stopped two Dallas power plays in the closing minutes of the period and the first minute of the third.
Nine seconds after Dustin Brown left the penalty box, Martinez scored on a snap shot from the left circle.
NOTES: Los Angeles has successfully stopped 86 percent of opponents’ power plays. … Kuemper got the start in place of Jonathan Quick, who is on injured reserve because of an upper-body injury. … LaDue’s goal was his first in 24 career games. … Stars D Dan Hamhuis played in his 1,000th career game.
Kings: Visit Nashville on Thursday.
Stars: Travel to Arizona for a game on Thursday.
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