Contact Form

    News Details

    Kings head to Minnesota looking to build off first win
    • October 18, 2023

    Following a 5-1 romp north of the border, the Kings marched onto Minnesota, where they will face the Wild on Thursday in a second consecutive game to pit a prominent King against his former team.

    On Tuesday, Pierre-Luc Dubois opened the scoring and got his first goal (and first point) as a King against his former mates from the Winnipeg Jets. The last time that happened was not that long ago. Last season, Kevin Fiala also got his first goal as a King against his most recent former organization, this same Minnesota Wild club.

    Much had been made of the buildup to Tuesday’s match, particularly with Dubois returning to Winnipeg after opting for a trade, which the Jets and Kings completed in June. The reception was somewhat mixed and further abated by the attendance being around 11,000 fans on a Tuesday night.

    “It wasn’t as bad as I thought, it was a lot better than I expected. They were booing the refs a little bit more than me,” Dubois said.

    On the Jets’ end, Coach Rick Bowness started by deploying three former Kings on a line together: Gabe Vilardi, Alex Iafallo and Rasmus Kupari. Unfortunately, Vilardi went down with a knee injury after a hit by Blake Lizotte less than six minutes into the match. Vilardi has a sprained MCL and will miss four to six weeks.

    Even without Vilardi, the Jets applied heavy pressure early and the Kings were somewhat fortunate to reach the first intermission in a scoreless contest. From there, they played a more direct, composed game and wore down the Jets. While Winnipeg got its first puck past Cam Talbot with just 76 seconds to play, the Kings may not have had a victory, much less a lopsided potential shutout, if not for Talbot’s sterling play in the early going, which Coach Todd McLellan called “essential.”

    “You want to be the guy that makes those saves in those situations and gives your team a chance to settle down in a tough building to play in,” Talbot said.

    Dubois and Talbot were newcomers to the Kings, but the man of the match was mainstay and Thousand Oaks native Trevor Moore, who compiled a goal and an assist. Arthur Kaliyev returned from his suspension to a comfortable spot on a line with Phillp Danault and Moore, who set up Kaliyev’s first goal of the season.

    With their first win bringing their points percentage to .500, the Kings (1-1-1) turned their attention to the Wild (2-1), which has won two of its first three games.

    Minnesota is led by Kirill Kaprizov, who is tied with linemate Mats Zuccarello for the team scoring lead with five points. Filip Gustavsson and Marc-Andre Fleury man their crease after Gustavsson’s breakout campaign last year, which earned him a contract extension.

    Related Articles

    Los Angeles Kings |

    Pierre-Luc Dubois helps Kings beat Jets in return to Winnipeg

    Los Angeles Kings |

    Kings will see familiar faces in trip to Winnipeg

    Los Angeles Kings |

    Kings lose in shootout to Hurricanes

    Los Angeles Kings |

    Kings make more moves before hosting Carolina Hurricanes

    Los Angeles Kings |

    Kings place Viktor Arvidsson on long-term injured reserve

    When Fiala first faced his former franchise, he was not lined up opposite the players for whom he was traded like Dubois was Tuesday. The Wild acquired Kings prospect defenseman Brock Faber in that deal as well as a draft pick that they used on winger Liam Ohgren.

    While Ohgren is dealing with a murky injury situation in his native Sweden, Faber made an impact in last year’s first-round series against the Dallas Stars, springboarding him into this season. He had the game-winning goal in a 2-0 victory over Florida in Minnesota’s opener, and his plus-four rating ranked second on the team.

    Kings at Minnesota

    When: 5 p.m. Thursday

    Where: Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, Minn.

    How to watch: Bally Sports West

    ​ Orange County Register