(Sports Network) - Hoping to put some recent struggles behind them, the Los Angeles Kings try to win consecutive games for the first time this month as they host the Boston Bruins, who will be without Marc Savard for this trip to the Staples Center. Despite blowing a three-goal first-period lead on Saturday, the Kings were able to slip past the Coyotes, 4-3, on Jarret Stoll's game-winner early in the third period. The victory snapped a three-game slide for Los Angeles, one in which the club had scored just twice and was shut out, 2-0, on Thursday in Phoenix.
Drew Doughty, Justin Williams and Alec Martinez each lit the lamp in the first period for the Kings, who won for just the third time in 13 games are now four points behind the Sharks for the eighth spot in the Western Conference. Jonathan Quick ended with 23 saves. "We know the importance of every game," said LA head coach Terry Murray, whose club hasn't won consecutive games since a four-game win streak from Dec. 21-27.
"Whenever you win on the road, it's critical that you use it to reinforce the idea of solid play and bringing that kind of energy. That's something that we have to do every game the rest of the way." Los Angeles will now try to avoid an eighth loss in 10 home games tonight with a fifth straight victory over the Bruins. Each of the last four meetings between these clubs has gone past regulation, with each of the last three being decided in a shootout. The Kings posted a six-round 4-3 win at Boston on Nov. 20.
Quick is a perfect 4-0-0 in his career versus the Bruins with a 2.32 goals-against average. He won't face Savard, who left Saturday's win at Colorado in the second period after getting hit into the boards. Savard exited the game bleeding and did not travel to Los Angeles, instead heading back to Boston for further evaluation. Of course, the fear is Savard may have suffered another head injury. The 33- year-old suffered a concussion late last season, and though he returned during the postseason, Savard did not make his 2010-11 debut until Dec. 2 due to post-concussion syndrome.
The Bruins charged on without Savard in Denver, rolling to a 6-2 victory. Brad Marchand notched a career-high four points on two goals and a pair of assists, while Milan Lucic also scored twice. Patrice Bergeron and Mark Recchi finished with a goal and two assists each, while Recchi now has seven points in his last six games. Tim Thomas made 32 saves and is 8-0-3 in his last 11 outings with a pair of shutouts. "We played well all day and we forced them to work for whatever they got," Thomas said.
Boston has won six of its last eight and leads Montreal by two points for first place in the Northeast Division. The Bruins have also won three straight on the road and are 6-0-3 in their last nine as the guest. Thomas is 0-0-4 with a 2.46 GAA in his career versus the Kings.
For more information on tonight's game, be sure to read Jewels From The Crown.