Kings shut out by Islanders, 3-0
When Kings Coach Terry Murray said Saturday morning his players would have to be careful against the New York Islanders and that "there’s no way you can allow yourself to be ambushed," it seemed like a typically polite, coach-speak kind of remark.
His fears were realized Saturday when the Kings lost in regulation for the first time in 12 games in a 3-0 loss to the Islanders before a lively crowd of 13,110 at the Nassau Coliseum.
The defeat ended the Kings’ club-record-tying 11-game point streak at 8-0-3 and gave them a still-solid record of 5-1-3 with only one game left in their stretch of 10 consecutive games away from home. But the loss of even a single point can mean an early summer for teams in the congested Western Conference standings, and the Kings have to hope that a defeat here doesn’t cost them too dearly.
Al Montoya stopped 34 shots for the shutout, his first since April of 2009.
The Kings’ last regulation loss was on Jan. 20, when they lost to Phoenix, 2-0, at home.
The Islanders, 14th-ranked in the East, used their speed to create odd-man rushes the Kings couldn’t defend. The Islanders also used their tenacity to win puck battles all over the ice and outplay the Kings, who apparently packed their focus and intensity in their suitcases for their charter flight home.
The Islanders padded their lead to 2-0 in the second on a goal by former King forward Matt Moulson against his brother-in-law, Jonathan Quick. The two are married to sisters, but Moulson showed no mercy in blasting a shot from beyond 45 feet while using Rob Scuderi as a screen as he picked the upper-left corner of the net.
Moulson scored the Islanders’ final goal at 13:40 of the third period, beating Quick to the stick side from the slot with no resistance from defenseman Matt Greene beside him.
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Helene Elliott, reporting from Uniondale, N.Y.
Photo: Kings center Jarret Stoll is poised for a rebound as Islanders goaltender Al Montoya makes one of his 34 stops on Saturday. Credit: Kathy Kmonicek / Associated Press