Kings Look For Point In Club Record 12th Straight Game, Battling Islanders

(Sports Network) - The Los Angeles Kings will be attempting to set a franchise record for points in consecutive games when they take the ice tonight. Judging by their recent history against the New York Islanders, the team seems to stand a good chance of breaking that mark.

The Kings head to Nassau Coliseum with an 8-0-3 record over their last 11 outings, matching a club-best points streak initially set from Feb. 28-Mar. 24, 1974, when Los Angeles racked up nine wins and two ties. The surge has vaulted the Kings back into the thick of the Western Conference playoff race, where the team sits only three points off Phoenix's lead atop the tightly- bunched Pacific Division despite being tied for last place.

Los Angeles was unable to obtain a fourth straight victory in Thursday's clash with the New York Rangers, however, coming out on the short end of a 4-3 decision that was decided by a shootout. The Kings did battle hard in defeat, delivering quick responses after twice falling behind during the third period. Matt Greene scored just 1:40 after a Rangers' goal to knot the contest at 2-2, while Dustin Brown forced overtime after notching his second tally of the night with just 2:21 remaining in regulation.

Brown's late goal came 47 seconds after Artem Anisimov deflected a shot past Kings goaltender Jonathan Bernier to give the Rangers a brief 3-2 lead with 3:08 to go. "I look at the third period, coming back two times, down 2-1, down 3-2," said Los Angeles head coach Terry Murray. "It was a huge response. I was real pleased with that, to get into a tie game at the end and to get into the overtime."

Bernier made 34 saves in regulation and overtime, but was beaten twice on three attempts during the shootout phase. New York clinched the win when goaltender Henrik Lundqvist turned back Anze Kopitar's shot to end the third round. The Kings will try to improve their place in the standings when they take on an Islanders squad they've owned in past years. Los Angeles has defeated the Isles six straight times, with three of those wins taking place in Long Island, and New York hasn't prevailed in this series since a 3-2 road triumph on Feb. 15, 2003.

Los Angeles cruised to a 5-1 rout of the Islanders at Staples Center back in November, with Kopitar potting a pair of goals and the Kings owning a 34-19 advantage in shots. The Islanders have been considerably more competitive as of late, however. New York has compiled a 6-3-0 record so far in February and put together a season- best four-game win streak during the month, although its most recent result wasn't a positive one.

In Thursday's home matchup with Northeast Division leader Boston, the Islanders were faced with a four-goal deficit early in the second period en route to a 6-3 setback. The Bruins scored three unanswered times in the first period and owned a commanding 4-0 advantage after David Krejci lit the lamp less than a minute into the second session.

"When you get down three goals against the Boston Bruins, you're chances of coming back are not very good," said Islanders center John Tavares. "We came out slow, we didn't play our game and we weren't moving our feet. If we keep that mentality with all the shots we had in the last two periods, we're going to keep scoring goals. We just have to be better in our own zone."

Tavares did net his 23rd and 24th goals of the season in the loss, but teammate Michael Grabner had a six-game goal-scoring tear end on Thursday. The rookie forward had amassed 10 goals and 13 points over that outstanding stretch.

Nathan Lawson started in goal for the Islanders, but was pulled early in the second period after surrendering five goals on only 18 shots. The Kings continue a challenging stretch of 10 consecutive road games tonight and have gone 5-0-3 thus far on the swing, which concludes Wednesday in Anaheim.

For more information on tonight's game, be sure to read Jewels From The Crown.

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