Lowly Kings blank West-leading Flames for upset victory
Calgary still tops Pacific Division ahead of Sharks
The basement-dwellers of the NHL's Western Conference tripped up the top team Monday when the Los Angeles Kings blanked the Calgary Flames 3-0.
Kings backup goaltender Jack Campbell earned his second career shutout and his first win since Feb. 5 stopping 42 shots.
Jonny Brodzinski and defenceman Derek Forbort scored with Tyler Toffoli adding an empty-net goal for Los Angeles (28-39-8).
The Kings won their third straight, but won't see the post-season.
"Winning three games in a row now, coming into Calgary with the team they have and getting a win to start the road trip, that's exciting and that's some good hockey right there," Campbell said.
WATCH | Flames fall to Kings in feisty affair:
"We've got to keep that going. If we play like this, it'll be a fun however many games we have left."
Flames goaltender Mike Smith turned away 18 shots in the loss.
Calgary trailed 1-0 after two periods despite outshooting the Kings 31-14.
"You need everything clicking at this time of the year if you want to have success," Flames head coach Bill Peters said.
"I don't think we were overly-impressed with our own execution. I thought we could have executed with the puck allowing us to play faster.
"We gave up one early and ended up chasing the game."
Calgary (47-22-7) still topped the Pacific Division six points up on the San Jose Sharks, who were at home to Detroit later Monday. Both teams are playoff-bound.
Calgary's penalty killers held Los Angeles scoreless on three chances with a man advantage, including a five-on-three. But the Flames power play was 0-for-4.
"They have crazy talented players and their power-play, I thought we eliminated a lot of their high-end chances because we won some draws and cleared the puck," Campbell said.
"When you do that, they'll get frustrated."
Kings defenceman Drew Doughty was booed whenever he touched the puck at the Saddledome. He told Sportsnet earlier in the day he had "no respect" for Flames forward Matthew Tkachuk.
The two players have history dating back to Tkachuk elbowing Doughty in the head two years ago. Tkachuk served a two-game suspension for it.
Doughty and Tkachuk tangled early in the third with Doughty taking a slashing penalty. Calgary wasn't able to generate a goal, however.
Los Angeles laid 22 hits to Calgary's 11 and kept Flames shots to the perimeter where Campbell could see them.
"Obviously Jack was incredible for us and made some big saves at key moments that kept us in the game," Kings defenceman Dion Phaneuf said.
"But we wanted to come in and play a good road game against a very good team. They're where they're at in the standings for a reason.
"They're a deep team, a fast team, they play with structure. I thought we did a really good job tonight and we deserved the win.
"The shot clock didn't show as much of that, but at the end of the day we found a way to put more pucks in their net than they did in ours."
A healthy scratch in three of the previous four Kings games, forward Ilya Kovalchuk did not accompany the team on their three-game road swing through Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver.
Head coach Willie Desjardins dressed seven defencemen and 11 forwards Monday.
After a scoreless second period, Kings centre Brodzinski beat Smith with a wrist shot from the top of the circle at 11:51 of the third for a 2-0 lead.
Los Angeles ended the first period and opened the second with a two-man advantage, but didn't generate a goal with it.
Forbort threaded a soft wrist shot through traffic to beat Smith glove side 57 seconds after the opening faceoff.
The two teams meet again Monday in Los Angeles.