NEWARK, New Jersey, June 2, 2012 (AFP) – Jeff Carter scored the game winner late in over-time Saturday to lift Los Angeles to a 2-1 win over New Jersey, giving the Kings a commanding 2-0 series lead in the Stanley Cup Finals.
Carter scored with 6:18 left in the extra session, extending the Kings’ road win streak to 10-0 in the post-season as they now head back to Los Angeles for games three and four in the NHL championship series.
Carter took a shot from the right side then raced around the back of the goal where he collected his own rebound before beating Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur with a long wrist shot through a tangle of legs and sticks.
“I just took it wide and came around the net and tried to get it out of the way of all the sticks and it went home,” Carter said.
It was the second straight game the Kings have won in over-time and it is the first time since 1951 that the opening two contests of the Stanley Cup Finals have gone into an extra session.
“We will enjoy this one tonight but then we have to put it behind us,” Carter said.
Defenceman Drew Doughty opened the scoring in the first period for the Kings, whose 10 consecutive road wins are a league record for the most in a single post-season.
Game three of the series is set for Monday night at Staples Center.
The Kings are making their second appearance in the Stanley Cup finals and are now just two wins away from their first NHL title.
They played the role of giant killers to reach the finals, knocking off the West’s top three seeds — Vancouver, St. Louis and Phoenix — and Saturday’s win was also the result of patience and hard work said coach Darryl Sutter.
“Tonight was heavy lifting,” Sutter said. “You know, it was along the boards. Their defence are coming down. Quite honest, for probably a good part of two periods, they were controlling that part of the boards. Hey, you know what, we’ll have our work cut out going home.”
New Jersey tied it up 1-1 early in the third when forward Ryan Carter tipped a Marek Zidlicky shot past Los Angeles goaltender Jonathan Quick. It was his fifth goal of the post-season.
Defenceman Doughty’s third goal of this year’s playoffs was a thing of beauty. Starting in his own end, he beat several New Jersey players in the neutral zone before carrying the puck over the Devils’ blueline where he blasted a high wrist shot past Brodeur 7:49 into the first.
Doughty also assisted on the Kings’ over-time winner in game one.
Both goalies were outstanding in game two. New Jersey outshot the Kings 10-6 in the first period but Quick kept Los Angeles in it with some superb saves, including one off a deflection in close by Dainius Zubrus. Quick finished with 32 saves.
Brodeur, who had 30 total saves, was the busier goalie in the second period. At one point he had to flash out his glove to stop a hard, high shot from Kings forward Colin Fraser to keep the score close.
Both teams were guilty of bad giveaways with the score tied. Kings forward Dustin Brown turned the puck over in the final minute of the third but Devils’ Ilya Kovalchuk ringed the shot off the crossbar. Then in overtime Kovalchuk had a giveaway of his own but Brodeur came up with the save.
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