FINAL – Kings 3, Sabers 0 – Petersen, Athanasiou, Yawney

The LA Kings got 19 saves from goaltender Cal Petersen, who picked up his second shutout of the season, in a 3-0 victory over the Buffalo Sabers on Sunday afternoon.

The Kings got two goals from forward Andreas Athanasiou, as well as one from Dustin Brown, in addition to the aforementioned shutout from Petersen beween the pipes.

After a scoreless opening period, the Kings finally broke the 0-0 deadlock late in the second period, as Athanasiou buried his sixth goal of the season. Defenseman Mikey Anderson sprung Athanasiou on a 2-on-1 rush, with the speedy forward keeping it himself and firing top glove to get the visitors on the board.

With chances at a premium in the third period, the score remained 1-0 into the final minute, before the Kings iced the game with a pair of empty-net goals to seal a 3-0 victory. Athanasiou picked the empty net from the left wing for his second of the evening, before Brown got one of his own with less than 10 seconds to play.

Hear from Petersen, Athanasiou and Trent Yawney following today’s game.

*Yawney shared after the game that Viktor Arvidsson is day-to-day with a lower-body injury and that Head Coach Todd McLellan is expected to return behind the bench tomorrow in Boston.

Cal Petersen

Andreas Athanasiou
On contributing with two goals in his return to the lineup
Yeah, I think we played a pretty solid, team game today, that team has been playing some real good hockey lately, it was a tough game. I thought all four lines were solid tonight, defense and goaltending was all there.

On impacting a game where offense was at a premium in the way that he did
Yeah, any time games are close, that’s when the goals become bigger, they’re more important in those 0-0 games, it’s important to get that first one. Obviously, I like getting goals and helping the team out, tonight was a big one, it was a big win for us.

On the lead up to the 2-on-1 on his goal
It was a good play all around, from the start. Dewy rimmed it out to Kaliyev, who made a great bump back to Andy and it was just a great breakout all around. It kind of just worked out, from the defensive side of the puck and got the offense from there.

On reaching 100 professional goals, with the game winner being his 100th in the NHL
Yeah, that’s pretty cool. Any time you put the puck in the back of the net, it’s a confidence booster, it gets your feet underneath you and the sooner it happens, the better. Just an all-around, team effort tonight

On having the confidence of the coaching staff to be out late in a one-goal game
Those are big moments, a big time in the game and you want to be out there and able to help get the puck out and ice the game. It worked out tonight.

Trent Yawney
On his impressions from tonight’s victory on the road
A collective effort. Cal made some big saves in the first period, that gave us a chance to get running, the other night it was Quickie in the third on the breakaway. Everybody’s effort had an impact and they played a real strong game from start to finish.

On Athanasiou’s impact tonight, and his ability to change a game in one play
Yes, he definitely has that skillset for sure. It was good for him to get back in and I thought he played some real strong [hockey]. On his goal, he was a strong track to start it off and he got rewarded at the other end with a 2-on-1.

On the Kings playing more to their identity tonight
Today’s game was probably closed to our identity as a group, this year. The one thing our guys are very comfortable with is those close games, those 1-0, 0-0 games. The leadership has played in a lot of them, never beat themselves which is a trait that you want and our leadership core provides that.

On the team playing a disciplined game tonight
We had to respect that power play, watching it before the game, I was like we better check properly because if we give up too many opportunities, we’re going to be in trouble, because their power play is really, really hot.

On Mikey Anderson’s play and ability to put a bad play or game behind him
He and the defense as a whole I thought were really solid around the net, the last two games, Buffalo scored five goals in each game. Mikey in particular was back on track, he looked like the Mikey of old and that’s just a credit to his confidence. He has that ability, which you don’t see very often in a young player, where he has a tough night, he can bounce back. I hope he never loses that, because it’s something that a lot of guys strive for and never, ever find.

On finishing his tenure as acting head coach, and looking ahead to tomorrow
It’s been fun, it was fun, I enjoyed it. It’s nice to be around the guys and see them on both sides of the coin. It started at home, getting clobbered by Boston and now we’re going to finish up in Boston. It’s going to be an interesting game tomorrow.

Notes-

– In his return to the lineup, forward Andreas Athanasiou scored the game-opening goal, his sixth tally of the season. Athanasiou has a point in each of the four times he’s returned to the lineup this season, including goals in each of the last three.
– Athanasiou’s first goal of the game was the 100th of his NHL career.
– Dustin Brown iced the game late with an empty-net goal, giving him goals in back-to-back games
– Defenseman Mikey Anderson had an assist, a +2 rating and 23:59 in total time on ice, tying his second-highest total of the season.
– Alex Iafallo collected the primary assist on Athanasiou’s second goal, giving him six career points (1-5-6) from eight games played against his hometown team.
– Goaltender Cal Petersen made 19 saves this evening in his second career start against the team that drafted him. Petersen’s shutdown was. His second of the season and the third of his NHL career

The Kings are scheduled to travel to Boston later today, in advance of tomorrow evening’s game versus the Bruins. Considering the back-to-back, the Kings are not scheduled to hold a morning skate tomorrow in Massachusetts.

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