Kings Tie Up Oilers

A pyrotechnics display is seen at the UK Premiere of "V For Vendetta" at the Empire Leicester Square on March 8, 2006, in London. The film is based on the Alan Moore book and is written and co-produced by "The Matrix" duo Andy and Larry Wachowski.
GETTY IMAGES/Dave Hogan

Jamie Storr didn't have much time to prepare for his assignment against the Edmonton Oilers about eight minutes, by his estimation.

The Oilers, however, gave him two periods to get settled in for the barrage that lay ahead. After surrendering a first-period goal by Mike Grier, Storr stopped all 23 shots he faced over the final 47 minutes as the Los Angeles Kings earned a 1-1 tie on Tuesday night.

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  • "It's an exciting feeling," Storr said. "But realistically, you've got to be prepared. And one thing I've learned over the years is that you can't slack off on game day, even if you're not supposed to play. I've been approaching it like this for a year and a half now, and it finally paid off."

    Storr made his fourth start of the season in place of Stephane Fiset, who sustained a bruised right hand in the pregame warmup when he was hit by a shot under his blocking pad.

    "I'm sure if Fiss was in there, we probably would have won 1-0," Storr said. "We dominated them and it was a good all-around effort."

    Storr had a relatively easy time during the first two periods, facing only 10 shots.

    "They're a very good team," said Bryan Smolinski, who tied the score just 25 seconds after Grier's goal. "They dominated Anaheim. They work hard and do things that a lot of the top teams don't do. And that keeps them in hockey games."

    Oilers right wing Ryan Smyth, who has gone nine consecutive games without a goal, was stopped on a breakaway in the first period. But the puck squirteloose in the crease and Grier banged it home to open the scoring.

    "Smitty made a nice deke and I just kept going to the net in case of a rebound," Grier said. "The puck just happened to be lying there and I got a little lucky."

    But Smolinski beat Tommy Salo to the stick side with a one-timer from 30 feet away after getting a pass in the slot from Donald Audette. After that, Salo stopped the final 29 shots he faced.

    Edmonton, the league's only winless road team at 0-5-1, managed just one shot on net through the first 10 minutes of the second period. The Kings nearly took the lead with five minutes left in the period when Garry Galley's slapshot from 20 feet ricocheted off the right post.

    "We had a lot of shots, and we had a couple of two-on-ones that we could have buried," Smolinski said. "But the power play wasn't up to par tonight, and that could have won the game for us."

    Both teams were 0-for-5 with the man advantage. The Oilers have scored only two power play goals in 24 opportunities on the road this season.

    "We didn't get too many shots on our power plays," Grier said. "And at times, I think we were sitting on our heels too much and not forcing the issue. But in the third, we kind of regrouped and got our defensemen involved in the play. When we do that, we're able to create a lot of offense."

    Edmonton coach Kevin Lowe was understandably frustrated after his team squandered its best chance so far to win a game away from Skyreach Centre.

    "We're not getting top performances out of everybody right now, but we're hanging around," he said. "The game was right there for us."

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