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Allison scores, Schneider, Palffy return for Kings

1/3/2002

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Nothing Jason Allison does surprises Mike
Keenan.

Allison, who played for Keenan in Boston, met up with his former
coach Wednesday night and had a goal and an assist for the Los
Angeles Kings in a 3-1 victory over Keenan's Florida Panthers.

"He can put the puck in the net," Keenan said. "He thrives on
goal scoring and offense, and he's a very powerful man around the
net. You've really got to take the puck away from him quickly.
Otherwise, he's very dangerous -- and he exhibited that again
tonight."

Mikko Eloranta and Adam Deadmarsh also scored, and Felix Potvin
made 29 saves for the Kings, who got right wing Ziggy Palffy and
defenseman Mathieu Schneider back from the injured list and snapped
a four-game winless streak.

It was the second time Allison and Eloranta scored in the same
game since the Oct. 24 trade that sent them from Boston to Los
Angeles for Glen Murray and Jozef Stumpel.

Allison, who also set up Deadmarsh's third-period goal, leads
the Kings with 30 points. They are 12-12-6-1 since the trade while
the Bruins own the best record in the Eastern Conference at
18-8-1-4.

Palffy, who earned an assist on Allison's goal, missed 14 games
after fracturing a rib Dec. 1. Schneider was sidelined for 23 games
since Nov. 8, a week before he underwent surgery to repair a hernia
and torn abdominal muscle.

The Kings, who had a healthy roster for the first time since
early November, lost left wing Ken Belanger on his second shift
when he hurt his hand in a fight with Lance Ward.

Defenseman Andreas Lilja limped off with 6:14 to play, after
spraining his left knee. Just 78 seconds later, Eloranta had to be
helped off with a sprained left knee after accidentally getting
upended by teammate Ian Laperriere.

"That's the way it's seemed to have gone for us this year,"
Kings coach Andy Murray said. "It was almost too good to be true,
having everybody back healthy. We'll re-examine all three of them
in the morning and we'll have a better idea of where we stand. But
it doesn't look real good right now."

Rookie Kristian Huselius scored his team-high 15th goal for
Florida.

The Panthers, who averaged 31.5 shots the previous four games,
were outshot 20-5 in the second period and 37-30 overall after
putting 14 shots on Felix Potvin during the opening period.

"Our players should have expected the other team -- particularly
playing at home -- to come out harder than they did in the first
period -- which they did. And we weren't ready for it," Keenan
said.

"I think it was our players' inexperience and lack of maturity
as a group -- not that they're immature, but they don't have the
maturity levels to deal with what it takes to come back and play
consistently."

The 20 shots were the most in a period by the Kings this season,
but the only puck that got past Roberto Luongo was Eloranta's third
goal.

He put Los Angeles ahead 2-1 at the four-minute mark, shrugging
off a check by defenseman Bret Hedican along the right boards and
converting his own rebound after Viktor Kozlov failed to clear the
puck.

"I had a little talk with Mikko before the game, and he was
getting down on himself a little bit because he hadn't been
scoring," Murray said. "I told him to just keep believing, and
one will go in for him. So it was nice to see him get rewarded."

Huselius converted a rebound at 15:48 of the first period to
open the scoring. But Allison tied it with two minutes left in the
first.

Allison set up Deadmarsh with a pass from behind the net at 8:53
of the third period while Kozlov was serving a kneeing penalty.

Game notes
To make room for Palffy and Schneider, the Kings designated
C Randy Robitaille and RW Brad Chartrand for assignment. Both have
to clear waivers before the Kings could send them to Manchester of
the AHL. ... Some of the Miami Hurricanes fans in town for
Thursday's Rose Bowl helped boost the attendance to 17,006 -- the
largest ever to see the Panthers play in Los Angeles. They never
drew more than 14,752 in seven visits. ... The Panthers began a
stretch of seven games in 11 days. ... Florida D Robert Svehla
turned 33, and Kings D Mattias Norstrom turned 30. ... When the
Panthers set the club record for most shots in a game (52) and
fewest (12), the Kings were the opponent both times.