Penner scores late as Kings take Game 1Apr 12, 2012 - 6:41 AM
Mike Richards registered a goal and two assists for the Kings, who are meeting Vancouver in the first round for the second time in three years.
Los Angeles goalie Jonathan Quick made half of his 24 saves over the final 20 minutes.
The defending conference champion Canucks got goals from Alexandre Burrows and Alexander Edler.
"I thought we didn't play our best, spent a lot of time in the penalty box," Burrows said.
Roberto Luongo stopped 35 shots for the two-time Presidents' Trophy winners, who played without Daniel Sedin (concussion).
On the winning goal, the Kings capitalized on a giveaway by Edler in the Vancouver zone. Richards knocked down the defenseman's clearing attempt inside the blueline and dished to Jeff Carter, who returned to the lineup after missing the final five games of the regular season with a bone bruise in his ankle.
The puck deflected off Carter's left skate and Penner slammed home the indirect feed.
"It was a fortunate bounce. I was in the position in the middle of the ice to pick up that pass," Penner said.
Los Angeles captain Dustin Brown added an empty-netter with 18 seconds remaining.
Vancouver will look to even this series on Friday before it shifts to LA.
Burrows celebrated his 31st birthday by netting the series' opening tally at the 4:17 mark of the first period.
The Canucks continued to occupy the Los Angeles zone after their power play expired. Quick was bumped by Vancouver forward Ryan Kesler after he denied a one-timer by Burrows from the left circle. As the goalie scrambled back into position, Burrows collected his own rebound in the slot and fired the puck past a miffed Quick, who sought the nearest referee in order to lobby for an interference call that wasn't forthcoming.
Later, Quick got a snow shower from Kesler, resulting in an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. Less than a minute later, Chris Higgins fired the puck over the glass and the delay-of-game penalty gave Los Angeles a two-man advantage.
Ten seconds into the 5-on-3, Richards beat Luongo with a quick shot from the bottom of the right circle, tying it at 13:31.
The Canucks ramped up the physicality in the second period and had already been whistled for two charging penalties when the Kings' Kyle Clifford absorbed a high hit from Byron Bitz along the boards.
Bitz was assessed a five-minute major and a game misconduct.
Los Angeles converted on the subsequent power play to take a 2-1 lead. Jarret Stoll provided a screen at the top of the crease, blocking Luongo's vision, as Willie Mitchell scored on a slap shot from the left point at 16:33.
Edler tied it off a faceoff win with 7.3 seconds left in the middle stanza.
Vancouver had won its last eight series-opening games, and the last 10 at home...The Kings have now won three straight playoff games on the road, the longest such streak in club history...Sedin missed the final nine games of the season after taking an elbow from Chicago defenseman Duncan Keith on March 21...Carter and Kesler each had two assists...Los Angeles was 8-22-7 during the season when allowing the game's first goal.
- LOS ANGELES: 4
Apr 12 1:24 AM
- Los Angeles Empty Net Goal - Dustin Brown, from Mike Richards and Jeff Carter at 19:42.
Kings 4, Canucks 2 3rd - 0:18Apr 12 1:23 AM
- Los Angeles Goal - Dustin Penner, from Jeff Carter and Mike Richards at 16:46.
Kings 3, Canucks 2 3rd - 3:14Apr 12 1:15 AM
- LOS ANGELES: 2
End of 2nd
Apr 12 12:27 AM
- Vancouver Goal - Alexander Edler, at 19:52.
Kings 2, Canucks 2 2nd - 0:08Apr 12 12:27 AM
- Los Angeles Goal - Willie Mitchell, from Alec Martinez and Justin Williams at 16:33.
Kings 2, Canucks 1 2nd - 3:27Apr 12 12:18 AM
- LOS ANGELES: 1
End of 1st
Apr 11 11:26 PM
- Los Angeles Power-Play Goal - Mike Richards, from Anze Kopitar and Drew Doughty at 13:31.
Kings 1, Canucks 1 1st - 6:29Apr 11 11:14 PM
- Vancouver Goal - Alexandre Burrows, from Henrik Sedin and Ryan Kesler at 4:17.
Kings 0, Canucks 1 1st - 15:43Apr 11 10:52 PM
- LOS ANGELES: 0
1st Period - 20:00
Apr 11 10:45 PM
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