Kings Look To Snap Home Losing Streak, Hosting Flames At Staples Center

(Sports Network) - Both the Kings and the Flames gave away a point this past weekend to a club chasing them in a tight Western Conference playoff race. The stutter step was much more costly for Calgary. With time running out on their regular season, the Flames hope to avoid a fifth loss in six games while dealing Los Angeles its first three-game skid in two months tonight at the Staples Center.

Calgary went into Sunday's meeting at Anaheim tied with the Ducks in the standings and one point out of a playoff spot. The urgency wasn't there for the Flames early in yesterday's meeting, but the club rallied from being down by three goals before losing a 5-4 overtime decision. With the loss, Calgary is now a point back of the Ducks and Stars for the final playoff seed in the West with just eight games to go.

The Flames were down 3-0 before ripping off four straight goals versus the Ducks. Tom Kostopoulos had two goals and an assist, while Jarome Iginla netted his 33rd goal of the season. Rene Bourque added his 25th and has five points over his last three games.

Henrik Karlsson relieved starter Miikka Kiprusoff after the latter gave up three goals on five shots in just under six minutes of action. Karlsson was perfect until allowing the game-tying goal with 2:01 left in regulation and Corey Perry's over-time winner with 2:22 to go in the extra session.

"There's not much to think about. You just go in and do your best, and try to take the next puck every time," Karlsson said after ending with 26 saves. "Of course, it's a little bit tougher when you get thrown in like that. But you just do your best. I felt pretty confident right away. I don't know what to say, it's just really disappointing."

The Flames lost the opener of a four-game swing and are likely to go back to Kiprusoff tonight. He is 13-3-1 in his last 17 versus the Kings, posting a 1.95 goals-against average and a 1-1-1 mark in three games this year.

The Kings hosted those same Ducks on Saturday and lost a 2-1 decision in overtime. Dustin Brown tied the game in the third period for Los Angeles and Jonathan Quick made 23 saves. However, Anze Kopitar's turnover led to Anaheim's winner 1:32 into the extra frame.

The loss, Los Angeles' second straight after a four-game win streak, has the Kings tied with the Blackhawks and Predators for spots 5-7 in the West, with the Ducks and Stars a point back.

"Right from the very start of the game there was a playoff-like atmosphere, the building was alive, and both teams came to compete hard," said LA head coach Terry Murray.

"I thought we had an excellent third period, but we just couldn't find a way to finish at the end of the day. It was unfortunate but we're going to build off this, there were a lot of nice things that happened."

The Kings fell to 0-1-1 on a five-game homestand and will host the Sharks on Thursday. Los Angeles trails San Jose by six points for first place in the Pacific Division. They haven't lost three straight overall since Jan. 17-20.

Quick will get the start tonight and is 3-3-0 with a 2.15 GAA versus the Flames.

Los Angeles has won two straight over Calgary since dropping the first meeting of the season between the clubs on Oct. 10. The Flames have won eight of the past 11 meetings overall and haven't lost a season series to the Kings since 2000-01.

Calgary has lost two straight at the Staples Center.

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