Kings take game one of Stanley Cup Finals over Rangers in overtime

By Ian Sacks,

For the second straight game, the Los Angeles Kings overcame a two-goal deficit to pull out an overtime victory.

In game one of the Stanley Cup Finals, they topped the New York Rangers 3-2. Three days earlier, the Kings got past the Chicago Blackhawks 5-4 in game seven of the Western Conference Finals.

The last time a team won consecutive games in the conference finals or Stanley Cup Finals after trailing by two goals in each contest was the 1992 Blackhawks, according to the Elias Sports Bureau, notes the Associated Press.

The Rangers jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first 15 minutes of the game. Left wing Benoit Pouliot got the first score on an unassisted goal 13:21 into the game. Less than two minutes later, with New York shorthanded, left wing Carl Hagelin found the back of the net.

Left wing Kyle Clifford got the Kings on the board before the first period ended. Defenseman Drew Doughty knotted the game at two with a goal six and a half minutes into the second period.

In the third period, the Kings attempted 20 shots, but failed to find the back of the net. This is the first time a team got 20 shots on goal in a finals period in over a decade and a half. The Rangers amassed only three shots in the period.

Four and a half minutes into the overtime period, Los Angeles right wing Justin Williams netted the game-winning goal.

“It’s a great result of the hockey game for us, but we have a lot of things to clean up,” Williams said in his post-game press conference on NHL.com. “Certainly not our best game, by any standards, especially ours, but we were able to get it done, and that’s the most important thing.”

This win marks the third time in the last seven games that the Kings erased a two-goal deficit to pull out a victory.

Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist recorded 40 saves (.930 save percentage), and Kings goalie Jonathan Quick rejected 25 shots (.926 save percentage), reports ESPN.

The Rangers, who are in the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time since 1994, also fell in the opener of that series 3-2 in overtime. They went on to win the Cup in seven games.

Game two is Saturday at 7 p.m. on NBC.

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