Kings after one period at Staples Center: Kings 1, Dallas 1
The Kings started the first period impressively but ended it with a rare bad defensive play by Drew Doughty and a Matt Greene taking 17 minutes in penalties to avenge what appeared to be a hard but legal hit by James Neal on Jarret Stoll.
Dustin Brown gave the Kings the lead at 6:13 with his team-leading seventh goal of the season, completing a nice play with linemates Scott Parse and Anze Kopitar. Parse had the puck in the right-wing corner and pushed it behind the net to Kopitar, who came out on the side with the puck on his backhand. He turned, getting the puck to his forehand, and with a defender trying to poke-check the puck away, threw a centering pass in front.
Dallas goaltender Kari Lehtonen was able to stop Kopitar’s shot but Brown pounced on the rebound and lifted it over the helpless goalie.
The Kings couldn’t capitalize on a power play but did kill a penalty called on Doughty at 10:57, improving their home penalty-killing efficiency to 22 for 22 this season. The Stars got three shots, two in rapid succession by Trevor Daley on a long shot and a short rebound, but Jonathan Quick stymied him.
Dallas pulled even at 17:04. Mike Ribeiro banged the puck off the boards in his own end to Jamie Benn, who eluded a slow-reacting Doughty to barge in on net and beat Quick with a backhander.
Stoll was skating along the boards, facing the glass, when Neal hit him hard and dropped him to the ice. The hit didn’t appear to be dirty and Neal’s elbow was tucked in at the time of the impact. Stoll was slow to get up and skated off bent over and in obvious pain; while he recovered, Greene went after Neal and for his trouble got two minutes for instigating a fight, five for fighting and a 10-minute misconduct. Neal got five for fighting.
More later at www.latimes.com/sports
-- Helene Elliott