LOS ANGELES (AP) – Alex Iafallo scored with 6:19 left and the Los Angeles Kings rallied to beat the Buffalo Sabers 3-2 on Sunday.
Anze Kopitar had a goal and an assist, Carl Grundstrom scored and the Kings have won back-to-back games for the first time this season. Jonathan Quick made 22 saves.
“This shoe was on the other foot, where we were ahead by a goal and we didn’t come out with a win. So doing it from behind and getting the win, I think that means a lot to our squad right now, ”Kings coach Todd McLellan said.
Rasmus Asplund and Victor Olofsson each scored for the Sabers, who lost to a Western Conference team for the first time in four games. Dustin Tokarski stopped 31 shots.
Buffalo has allowed three consecutive goals after building up a multi-goal lead for the second straight game. They managed to salvage a 4-3 overtime win in Anaheim on Thursday after leading 3-0 in the second period.
“We’ve been able to take the lead, but we can’t find a way to keep it, and I think it’s a big learning step for us,” said Sabers defenseman Jacob Bryson. “If we want to win a lot of games in this league, that’s something we will have to take into account.”
Iafallo buried Tobias Bjornfot’s smart pass at the edge of the crease to put the Kings ahead with about six minutes left, extending his point streak to three games (three goals, two assists).
“I think this guy is a great player. A great player, ”said McLellan of Iafallo, who is second on the team with four goals and eight points. “Everyone wants to continue to take something away from him, analyzes, whatever. I don’t care about any of that. “
Buffalo was leading 2-0 at 7:39 of the second period when Olofsson scored from a wrist shot in a 2-on-1 run.
Grundstrom responded with his second goal – on his own rebound – to move closer to 2-1 at 8:39.
Grundstrom played because Kings forward Viktor Arvidsson was eliminated late after he and forward Gabe Vilardi were placed on COVID-19 protocol on Sunday. Arvidsson participated in the warm-ups before being taken out of training.
“Today losing a player after the warm-up was a bit of a shock, but handled well by everyone,” said McLellan. “I reacted well, and that’s why we have two more guys warming up right now. It may sound strange, but you never know when you’re going to get that call.
Kopitar scored six seconds after the start of a power play to tie it at 2 at 4:50 of the third period. It was his 100th career power-play goal.
The Sabers’ first shorthanded goal of the season led them 1-0 at 3:07 of the second period. Asplund intercepted Arthur Kaliyev’s weak pass to break the other way and score for the third time in two games.
As the transition offense gave Buffalo their lead, coach Don Granato said the lack of sustained possession and untimely penalties got Los Angeles back into the game.
“It’s a little harder to control momentum in someone else’s building, so, yes, you have to pay a lot more attention to detail when you’re on the road in these situations,” he said. he declared. “Like any other team, we have to take all of this information about us and take it to heart and become better with it.”
With Buffalo set to face San Jose on Tuesday – seven Sharks players and coach Bob Boughner are in protocol – Granato has expressed concern that his team are facing a situation that “seems to be getting worse all around us.”
“We’ve all adapted to it, and it looks like we’ll all have to continue to adapt to it,” Granato added. “I don’t know what to tell you and how I’m feeling. I do not know how I feel. This is obviously a very delicate situation.
Olofsson has three goals and two assists in a three-game scoring streak. … Asplund had three goals and one assist in a three-game streak with the point. … Kopitar obtained his second consecutive game by several points. He has four multipoint performances in the Kings’ first eight games. … Bjornfot and Kings F Adrian Kempe each had two assists.
Sabers: Visit San Jose on Tuesday evenings.
Kings: Host St. Louis Wednesday night.
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