Los Angeles Hockey: Alex Steen

Kings: Willie Mitchell notches game winner vs. Blues

November, 22, 2011
Kings 3, St. Louis Blues 2

Eight keys to the game:

THE FACTS: The Kings battled back from a slow start Tuesday night at Scottrade Center in St. Louis and received the game winner on a rare goal by veteran defenseman Willie Mitchell with 5 minutes 49 seconds remaining in regulation.

THE STAT: In his most flawless game in a Kings uniform, Mike Richards assisted on the first goal to tie the score, 1-1, then scored early in the third to give the Kings a short-lived 2-1 lead. Just as impressive, Richards won his first 15 faceoffs before losing his final draw with 1.5 seconds remaining. Richards has seven goals in his last seven games.

TURNING POINT: Less than two minutes after the Blues tied the score, 2-2, on a goal by Vladimir Sobotka with 7:32 left in the game, Mitchell received a pass from Simon Gagne near the point and shot it toward the St. Louis goal. The puck deflected off St. Louis center Scott Nichol in transit and flew past goalie Jaroslav Halak with Kings forwards Jarret Stoll and Justin Williams providing screens. It was the 25th goal of Mitchell’s 12-year career and his seventh game winner.

HOT: Kings backup goalie Jonathan Bernier got the nod over Jonathan Quick and he kept the Kings in the hunt after allowing a goal on the first shot of the game. In just his fourth start this season, Bernier stopped 23 shots, none better than the one he turned away from Patrik Berglund after he took a pass while alone in front of the net with 4:40 left in the second period.

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