Devils Demolish The Kings

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The Los Angeles Kings thought they were on a roll until they met up again with the defending Stanley Cup champs.

Petr Sykora and Randy McKay scored power-play goals 2:06 apart in the first period and John Madden scored twice in the second as the New Jersey Devils beat Los Angeles 6-1 Thursday, ending the Kings' eight-game unbeaten streak.

"They have a lot of talented players and they showed you the speed they've got," Kings goalie Jamie Storr said. "They sneak in behind your defense and when they get the puck, they're gone."

Scott Gomez had a goal and a two assists and Alexander Mogilny added a goal and an assist for the Devils, who won their fourth straight game following a seven-game winless streak. They are 2-0 since the return of holdouts Jason Arnott and Scott Niedermayer, each of whom had an assist.

"It's our focus and attitude now," Madden said. "We've got some new blood in our lineup with Arnott and Niedermayer, and they give us more artillery and more confidence. Sticking to our game plan was also a big key today."

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  • The Devils, 1-for-17 on the power play in their previous six games, scored their first two times with the man advantage in their frst-ever visit to Staples Center. They were 6-27-6 at the Forum.

    Kings rookie Steven Reinprecht was sent off for holding 34 seconds after teammate Luc Robitaille opened the scoring at 11:17 of the first period, and the Devils capitalized just 16 seconds later when Patrik Elias set up Sykora in the low slot.

    McKay put the Devils ahead to stay with his 10th goal at 14:13 of the second period, 37 seconds after rookie Lubomir Visnovsky received a holding-the-stick penalty. Storr, making his 14th consecutive start in net, stopped Brian Rafalski's screened slap shot from the right point and McKay converted the rebound.

    Madden scored New Jersey's next two goals, raising his season total to 10. On the first one, he grabbed a loose puck at the left boards and let fly with a wrist quick wrist shot that beat Storr between the pads from 35 feet out at 2:42 of the second.

    "I just fired it as quick as I could on the net and hoped to catch him by surprise a little bit," Madden said. "It hit his pad, so maybe he wasn't able to react to it the way he wanted to. When you throw it on net, anything can happen."

    Madden made it 4-1 at 14:09 on a rebound of Sergei Brylin's shot from the left circle, moments after Jason Blake lost the puck to the forechecking Madden behind the net.

    "If you look back at last year, John didn't score a lot of goals. But all of his goals were key goals," Devils coach Larry Robinson said. "At the beginning of this season, I think I made a mistake when I said that goals from him are a bonus.

    "What I meant was that I don't ask John Madden to score goals for us. It's not that he isn't capable of scoring goals. He did in college and he's a tenacious worker who brings a good two-way element to our club."

    Gomez and Mogilny, who Robinson does expect goals from, completed the scoring in the third period.

    The Kings, who received a two-man advantage midway through the first period after staggered penalties to Jay Pandolfo and Sykora, opened the scoring a second after the first penalty expired. Robitaille's 11th goal and fourth in three games marked the sixth straight game in which the league's worst penalty-killing unit had surrendered a goal.

    After Mathieu Schneider's 25-foot slap shot bounced off goalie Martin Brodeur's glove, Robitaille got a piece of the rebound before Devils captain Scott Stevens accidentally banked the puck off the left side of his prone goaltender and into the net at 11:17 of the first period.

    Notes

  • Kings RW Glen Murray will undergo arthroscopic surgery Friday morning to have loose fragments removed from his right knee. He already is expected to be out at least a month after sustaining a torn right quad muscle in last Saturday's victory over Colorado.
  • The Kings hosted a Thanksgiving game for only the second time in their 34-year history and the first time since 1977.
  • Kings goalie Stephane Fiset, out since Sept. 22 because of a strained ligament in his left knee, will accompany the Kings on their three-game East Coast trip. He is scheduled to play Wednesday for their AHL affiliate in Lowell, Mass., and remain there when the team returns home.
  • Storr, who stopped 33 of 34 shots in a 2-1 victory over the Devils on Nov. 4, was 6-0-2 with a 1.71 goals-against average in his previous eight starts.


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