The Toronto Maple Leafs were defeated by the Los Angeles Kings 4-2 at Crypto.com Arena on Saturday night. A game with its ups and downs ended with another frustrating result for the Maple Leafs, who now hold a record of 4-41. The Kings have lost three of their last four were the underdogs coming into this one and, yet still managed to take away the full two points in regulation. Some costly errors and an inability to hold off the Kings power play made it a long night for Leafs nation watching this one.
In the opening period, the Los Angeles Kings clearly had the better start, dominating the shot totals and outskating the blue and white early. After Maple Leafs forward Calle Jarnkrok’s tripping minor, play started to get a little bit more even. The Leafs finally started to get their legs moving and opened the scoring on the power play! A rebound off the boards behind the goal was quickly put in the net by Maple Leafs captain John Tavares. The 32-year-old forward continued his strong start to the season early in this one, adding his fourth goal of the season. After the Maple Leafs took the lead, both sides finished out the period with some pretty even play. The Los Angeles Kings remained the side with most of the high-danger chances, though.
In the second period, things got off to a fast start for the Kings. A power-play goal for forward Adrian Kempe tied the game just over three minutes in. After the Kings tied the game on the man advantage, they continued their strong play looking to find the lead. Despite not scoring on some really good opportunities, the Los Angeles Kings were able to draw another penalty sending them to the man advantage. This time on the power play, it was Kings forward Viktor Arvidsson who put one past Ilya Samsonov. A nifty pass from former Montreal Canadiens forward Phillip Danault set up a beautiful goal for the Kings. After taking the lead midway through the second, they scored another five minutes later. This time it was Kings forward Gabriel Vilardi who scored, and Crypto.com Arena jumped! However, before the period ended, Maple Leafs forward Pierre Engvall got one back for the Maple Leafs! Secondary scoring has haunted the Maple Leafs early this season, so it was a good boost for the team heading into the final frame.
Going into the third period trailing by one, after getting a boost from your bottom six, you would think the Leafs would carry the momentum in trying to find the equalizer. However, an unfortunate turnover by Maple Leafs defenseman Rasmus Sandin cost the blue and white a goal. Kevin Fiala had a nifty takeaway and made no mistake in finishing his self-created breakaway. After the Kings took back the momentum early, playing with a two goal lead, it was evident the Maple Leafs were starting to get frustrated. Strong goaltending from Kings goaltender Cal Petersen mixed with solid play from the Los Angeles defense, kept the Maple Leafs from scoring. Despite a late goal from Mitch Marner, it was pulled back for a high stick, leading the Kings to finish the job, winning 4-2.
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