Before venturing any deeper, Mike Fisher’s game-winning goal was a good goal. There’s no controversy there. The in-camera replay – which was not available on the FOX Sports West broadcast – shows that the puck clearly crossed the goal line. Mike Richards took some heat for the developments leading up to the game-winner, and it appears as though he ventured too far from the center of the ice to the left wing to contend with Colin Wilson on the rush before realizing he needed to stay with Fisher. By the time he left the left wing, some time and space opened up as Drew Doughty realized there was a gap between him and Wilson. That allowed Wilson enough time to carry the puck deep into the Los Angeles zone before the immediate pressure arrived, and when he offered the puck towards the front of the goal mouth, Fisher found a spot adjacent to Richards where the Kings’ center wasn’t able to keep him from snapping a shot off the pass.

It’s going to be interesting to see how the Kings, a team that hasn’t suffered a real gut punch loss this year, will respond. The two Calgary losses were games in which the Kings allowed a game-winning goal in the final minute, though they hadn’t shared in the elation of having tied the game immediately prior. Last season the Kings went 11-3-0 after dropping the afternoon game in Detroit on February 10 in which they tied the game with 53 seconds remaining before Jonathan Ericsson’s shot from the right side trickled past Jonathan Quick with five seconds on the clock. After a pair of mettle-testing defeats in St. Louis in the first two playoff games last season, the Kings rattled off six consecutive postseason wins. It’s not only Darryl Sutter’s Park and Ride mentality that will need to remain constant for this grounded team; the Kings will need superior performances to the one offered in last night’s loss for the remainder of a challenging road trip that will place them in Chicago, Dallas and St. Louis over a span of four nights.

John Russell / National Hockey League

Anze Kopitar outstanding defensive performance? Check. With the level of play that he has established this season, it’s almost more surprising when he doesn’t offer the level of play that he offered in last night’s loss. Between his power play snipe, his instant recognition of a wide open Jeff Carter for the late game-tying goal, and his worthy-of-Selke-consideration defensive reads – he broke up a pair of three-on-two breaks, with his stick lift to strip the puck from Patric Hornqvist in the third period serving as the most impressive – the Kings’ top center was at the peak of his game on Saturday night.

After Ben Scrivens was awfully good for 56 minutes, he’d probably like to have mulligan for the final four minutes of the game. He wasn’t exactly helped out by an exhausted Los Angeles penalty kill leaving the ice for a desperate line change, which was followed by Mike Fisher demonstrating his savvy transitional skills by navigating a wide seam and blasting a shot past the Kings goaltender, who may have slightly been off his angle. Scrivens had also made a few saves more difficult than the one that barely snuck past him for the game-winning goal – his pad saves during the Kings’ 5-on-3 kill come to mind – though on a quick release from close range in the game’s deciding moment, that goal isn’t as much on him as the defensive detail in front of him. As Anze Kopitar told Lisa Dillman, “Two goals that obviously ended up hurting us … in two unlike-us mistakes.”

Last night’s game helped to reinforce the case that the Kings are taking an alarming amount of minor penalties. The Predators generated five power plays last night, including a five-on-three that the Kings eventually killed off and appeared to build some momentum from. The Kings have now afforded their opposition at least four power plays in eight of 12 December games. An offensive zone penalty by Tyler Toffoli helped set the stage for the game’s final, frantic moments, and was one of five power plays yielded to the opposition. The Kings’ 174 minor penalties represent the third-highest minor penalty haul in the league. The teams in their immediate company, beginning with the sixth-highest minor penalty tally, are Edmonton, Toronto, Winnipeg, Philadelphia and Ottawa.

John Russell / National Hockey League

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Alec martinez

#27 | 6′ 1″ | 210 lb | Age: 29

Born: July 26, 1987
Birthplace: Rochester Hills, MI, USA
Position: D
Handedness: Left

Bio

Bio: Martinez was drafted by the LA Kings in the 2007 Draft, while playing for Miami University. He has since become a two-time Stanley Cup champion and the 17th man in Stanley Cup playoff history to score the Cup-winning goal in overtime.

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Anze Kopitar

#11 | 6′ 3″ | 224 lb | Age: 29

Born: August 24, 1987
Birthplace: Jesenice, SVN
Position: C
Handedness: Left

Bio

As the 11th overall pick in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, Kopitar became the first Slovenian to play in the NHL. Kopitar has spent his entire NHL career with the Kings, and following the 2015–16 season, was named the Kings’ captain. Noted for both his offensive and defensive play, Kopitar was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the best defensive forward in the NHL in 2016.

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Drew Doughty

#8 | 6′ 1″ | 195 lb | Age: 26

Born: December 8, 1989
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Right

Bio

Bio: Doughty is a Canadian defenceman who was selected second overall by the Kings in the 2008 Draft. Doughty made his NHL debut in 2008 as an 18-year-old and was named to the All-Rookie Team. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Kings, a two-time Olympic gold medallist with the Canadian national team, and a Norris Trophy finalist.

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Tyler Toffoli

#73 | 6′ 1″ | 200 lb | Age: 24

Born: April 24, 1992
Birthplace: Scarborough, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right

Bio

Toffoli is a Canadian professional ice hockey forward, drafted by the Kings in the second round of the 2010 Draft. Toffoli scored his first career NHL goal in his second game in a 4–0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes in 2013. He was also named the 2012–13 AHL All-Rookie Team.
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Jeff Carter

#77 | 6′ 4″ | 215 lb | Age: 31

Born: January 1, 1985
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right

Bio

Carter began his hockey career playing in the Ontario Hockey League in Canada before joining the AHL and playing for the Philadelphia Flyers. He was then traded to the Colombus Blue jackets before joining the LA Kings in 2012, where he has since won two Stanley Cups with the Kings.

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Jonathan Quick

#32 | 6′ 1″ | 218 lb | Age: 30

Born: January 21, 1986
Birthplace: Milford, CT, USA
Position: G
Handedness: Left

Bio

Bio: Quick is the current goaltender for the LA Kings and was selected by Los Angeles at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. Previously, Quick was a silver medalist with USA at the 2010 Winter Olympics. He’s won two Stanley Cup championships with the Kings, along with being the most recent goaltender to be awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs.

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