Palffy and Bryan Smolinski each scored twice as the Kings beat
the Buffalo Sabres 4-1. Palffy, the subject of recent trade rumors,
has 14 goals and 29 points in the past 23 games.
''If we need any more stamp of approval why we want to keep him
in Los Angeles (and) let everybody in the East know that he's not
available, he's doing a pretty good job of it,'' Kings coach Andy
Murray said. ''He's never really been marketed or shopped.''
Murray insisted Palffy will not be traded.
''He's a King now and he'll be in the future,'' he added. ''I
like him the way he's playing right now.''
Palffy shrugged off all the talk.
''Who's doing the rumors?'' he said. ''Just you (the media),
nobody else. What are you going to do?''
Smolinski, who also played alongside Palffy with the Islanders,
knows he's a superstar.
''I've played with Ziggy for seven years and ... he's playing
fantastic,'' he said. ''He's scoring, he's hitting ... he's turned
into an awesome player.''
Smolinski attributed his own recent success -- seven goals and 11
points in his last 11 games -- to keeping the puck.
With his second goal, he equaled his total of 13 from last
''I'm kind of being a little selfish and shooting more,'' he
said. ''(I'm) not putting too much pressure on myself to score. I
know I need to score, but I guess it's just more burying the
chances I do have.''
The Kings are 9-1-1 when Smolinski scores this season and 14-0-2
when he and Palffy score in the same game, dating back to 1999-00.
This is the first time Smolinski and Palffy have both scored twice
in the same game.
''Ziggy's carried our team a long way, and Bryan's chipped in a
long way, too,'' Kings goaltender Jamie Storr said.
Eric Boulton scored for Buffalo, which lost to the Kings at home
for the first time since March 15, 1993, breaking a seven-game
Palffy opened the scoring in the first period when he
intercepted a Dmitri Kalinin clearing from along the boards inside
the blue line and fired a shot past Miller from the inside of the
left faceoff circle.
''Our first bad play was Dmitri's bonehead play through the
middle of the ice,'' Sabres coach Lindy Ruff said. ''It really
Less than five minutes later, Smolinski wristed a weak shot from
the right wing into the top-left corner of the net for his 12th
goal of the season.
Boulton scored the fourth goal of his career 2:58 into the
second -- his first goal since Nov. 19, 2001, a span of 67 games -- to make it 2-1.
Smolinski made it 3-1 less than two minutes later.
Palffy scored his 26th goal 13:52 into the third when he kept
the puck on a two-on-one and put his own rebound past Miller.
''They get open and they get looks,'' Miller said. ''Give them
some time and they'll get the puck in the net.''
Buffalo's Adam Mair and Los Angeles' Erik Rasmussen played
for the first time against their former teams since being traded
for one another in July. ... Sabres forward Jochen Hecht could miss up to
two weeks with a severely bruised right wrist after re-injuring it
Monday against Atlanta. ... Kings forward Brad Chartrand had back spasms
before the game and was scratched. ... The Kings sent forward Kip Brennan
to Manchester of the AHL before the game.
Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press
Arena: First Niagara Center Location: Buffalo, New York
Referees: Dan Marouelli, Jay Sharrers Linesmen: Greg Devorski, Derek Nansen
Attendance: 11,866 (63.5% full)
Team Stat Comparison
Power Play Goals
Power Play Opportunities
Shots on Goal
Zigmund Palffy (24)
Bryan Smolinski (13)
Assists: Steve Heinze, Lubomir Visnovsky
Eric Boulton (1)
Assists: Brian Campbell, Chris Gratton
Bryan Smolinski (14)
Assists: Alexander Frolov, Eric Belanger