Kings rally past Avalanche for first win

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LOS ANGELES — Adrian Kempe scored with 3:56 remaining in the third period, and the Los Angeles Kings got their first win of the season, 4-2 against the Colorado Avalanche at Staples Center on Thursday.

Kempe redirected Anze Kopitar‘s centering pass inside the left post to put Los Angeles ahead 3-2 before Blake Lizotte scored an empty-net goal at 19:18 for the 4-2 final.

Kopitar had two assists, and Drew Doughty and Gabriel Vilardi each scored a power-play goal for the Kings (1-1-2). Jonathan Quick made 24 saves playing on his 35th birthday.   

Nathan MacKinnon had a goal and an assist, and Mikko Rantanen scored for the third straight game for the Avalanche (2-2-0), who defeated the Kings 3-2 on Tuesday. Hunter Miska made 23 saves in his first NHL start.

Doughty got the Kings within 2-1 at 3:35 of the second period when he scored with a one-timer from the right circle during a 5-on-3, and Vilardi tied it 2-2 with a wrist shot from the right circle at 17:50.

Rantanen put the Avalanche ahead 1-0 at 4:49 of the first period, charging in to the slot to put in the rebound of MacKinnon’s backhand shot.  

The Kings have allowed the first goal in each of their four games. 

MacKinnon made it 2-0 at 19:15 of the first, beating Quick with a wrist shot through traffic from the left circle during a power play. MacKinnon has seven points (two goals, five assists) in his past three games.

Avalanche defenseman Bowen Byram, the No. 4 pick in the 2019 NHL Draft, had one shot in 11:19 of ice time in his NHL debut.

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