Associated Press

Kings jump back into top spot in the Pacific with win over Flames

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LOS ANGELES (AP) Jeff Carter scored twice, Jonathan Quick made 21 saves in his fifth shutout of the season and the Los Angeles Kings reclaimed the Pacific Division lead with a 3-0 win over the Calgary Flames on Thursday night.

The Kings moved one point ahead of the idle Anaheim Ducks with their 46th win this season, tying the franchise record most recently set in their Stanley Cup-winning 2013-14 campaign.

Quick earned his 42nd career shutout, extending his own NHL record for American-born goalies. He also earned his 39th win of the season to match the franchise single-season record, which he set in 2009-10.

Joni Ortio stopped 26 shots for the Flames, who have allowed 134 goals on the road, tied with Ottawa for worst in the league.

Andy Andreoff also scored for the Kings, and Anze Kopitar had two assists.

The Kings pounced after Josh Jooris clipped Quick for goaltender interference 35 seconds into the second period. Drew Doughty fired a low slap shot from inside the blue line and Carter tipped it, sending the puck rising over Ortio’s right shoulder to take the lead 11 seconds into the power play.

Doughty picked up his 316th career point, passing Steve Duchesne to move into second place in career scoring among Kings defensemen.

Carter scored his 22nd goal of the season later in the second, benefiting from the alertness of Brayden McNabb and Milan Lucic. Catching the Flames in a change, McNabb threaded a pass through the neutral zone to Lucic, who spun through two defenders and left a pass for Carter at the foot of the crease for an easy score.

Mikael Backlund appeared to have given the Flames some life when he scored on a wrist shot late in the second, but the goal was immediately waved off for goalie interference by Lance Bouma. Flames coach Bob Hartley unsuccessfully challenged the call.

The Flames endured another deflating sequence when Sam Bennett hit the inside of the post in the third, only for the Kings to break down the ice and score. Carter threw the puck in front and it went in off Andreoff and Joe Colborne.

With five games to go, the Kings are in position to claim the franchise’s second-ever division title. However, a recent 1-4-0 stretch by Los Angeles and the continued post-Christmas surge of the Ducks has put another banner in doubt.

NOTES: The Kings host the fifth and final Freeway Faceoff this season between the Southern California rivals next Thursday. … Quick blanked the Flames for the third time in his career. … Calgary has only collected 27 points on the road this season, the lowest total in the league.

Notable playoff performances on NBCSN: Kane’s hat trick tops Kings

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Hockey Week in America continues Friday with some big-time individual playoff performances.

The Western Conference foes dueled to a Game 7 that went into double overtime. Dallas relied on St. Louis native Ben Bishop and his 52 saves, the 5th-most saves in a Game 7 in history, to nearly defeat the Blues, but St. Louis prevailed 2-1, on the way to their historic 2019 Stanley Cup run.

Kenny Albert, Eddie Olczyk and Pierre McGuire called the action from Enterprise Center in St. Louis, Mo.

You can catch Kane’s Game 5 hat trick Friday on NBCSN beginning at 12 a.m. ET or watch the stream here.

FRIDAY NIGHT SCHEDULE:
• Kane’s hat trick: Kings vs. Blackhawks (2013 Western Conference Final) – 12 a.m. ET

More information about NBC Sports’ Hockey Week in America can be found here.

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Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.

Notable playoff performances on NBCSN: Bishop, Maroon shine in Game 7

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Hockey Week in America continues Friday with some big-time individual playoff performances.

In a double-overtime thriller between these two Western Conference contenders, Patrick Kane and his series-clinching hat trick propelled Chicago to a 4-3 victory. In the Stanley Cup Final, the Blackhawks defeated the Bruins to capture the 2013 championship.

The late, great Dave Strader, Darren Pang, and Brian Engblom had the call from United Center in Chicago, Ill.

You can catch Bishop’s 52-save performance and other memorable individual playoff memories Friday on NBCSN beginning at 10 p.m. ET.

FRIDAY NIGHT SCHEDULE:
• Bishop’s 52-save effort: Stars vs. Blues (Round 2, Game 7, 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs) – 10 p.m. ET
• Kane’s hat trick: Kings vs. Blackhawks (2013 Western Conference Final) – 12 a.m. ET

More information about NBC Sports’ Hockey Week in America can be found here.

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Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.

Notable playoff performances on NBCSN: Tavares leads Isles into Round 2

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Hockey Week in America continues Friday with some big-time individual playoff performances.

Trailing by one with less than a minute remaining in regulation with the extra attacker on the ice, Islanders captain John Tavares scored to tie the game at one to force overtime. In the second overtime period, Tavares scored the game-winner, leading the Islanders to a playoff series win in 2016 for the first time in 23 years.

Chris Cuthbert and Ray Ferraro called the matchup from Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y.

You can catch Tavares’ two-goal night and other memorable individual playoff performances Friday on NBCSN beginning at 8 p.m. ET.

FRIDAY NIGHT SCHEDULE:
• Tavares’ big night: Panthers vs. Islanders (Round 1, Game 6, 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs) – 8 p.m. ET
• Bishop’s 52-save effort: Stars vs. Blues (Round 2, Game 7, 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs) – 10 p.m. ET
• Kane’s hat trick: Kings vs. Blackhawks (2013 Western Conference Final) – 12 a.m. ET

More information about NBC Sports’ Hockey Week in America can be found here.

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Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.

Blues broadcaster ‘symptom free’ after self-quarantine

Longtime St. Louis Blues broadcaster John Kelly, jr. during the St. Louis Blues victory parade
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The quarantine strategy medical professionals have urged society to use have proved effective once again.

John Kelly, a broadcaster for the St. Louis Blues, tested positive for the COVID-19 virus and is now symptom free after being self-quarantined for 14 days.

The St. Louis Blues released the following statement earlier Friday.

The St. Louis Blues are confirming that play-by-play announcer John Kelly has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.

John has been in self-quarantine since March 13. We are thrilled to report that John is now feeling strong and symptom free.

The health and safety of the entire Blues family remains our core focus during these unprecedented times. We wish John well as he continues his recovery at home.

Follow this NBC News live update thread for more on the coronavirus pandemic.


Scott Charles is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottMCharles.