March 12, 2011 3:04 pm

Starring role for first line

In Columbus last night, the line of center Anze Kopitar and wingers Dustin Penner and Justin Williams played its fourth game together and had its first breakout game, as Kopitar scored three goals and Williams scored one. All told, the three players combined for seven of the Kings’ 12 points in the game. In the latest power-play tweaking, Kopitar, Penner and Williams have remained together on the first power-play unit, along with defensemen Drew Doughty and Jack Johnson. After practice today, Terry Murray talked about what he saw, other than the obvious — goals and points — from the Kopitar line last night against the Blue Jackets…

MURRAY: “I think they’re starting to develop some good chemistry there. There were some really good plays with close support, the little hand-off plays, the 10- to 15-foot passes. There were good reads off the forecheck, when having to track back. I liked Penner in a couple of those looks when he was coming back hard as that first forward in our own end, reading the tracking assignments. There was good communication going on with the defensemen. That’s a big part of our game, and he’s starting to get on page with that. He’s starting to figure out exactly what it is that we do in that checking part of the game. Then you see the finish on the other end, on a couple of good plays for Kopi to get his goals and, for Williams on the 2-on-1 with Penner, there was real good finish and good finish on that.”

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