|Date of game: 2/28/2012
Recap: Minnesota vs. Los Angeles
St. Paul, MN (Sports Network) - Jonathan Bernier made 26 saves to record his first shutout of the season, as the visiting Los Angeles Kings struck for a trio of first-period goals and rode that momentum to a 4-0 win over fellow playoff aspirant Minnesota.
Anze Kopitar joined Justin Williams with a goal and an assist for the Kings, who have tied Dallas and Colorado for the Western Conference's eighth and final playoff spot with 70 points.
"We were desperate. We knew coming in that we needed two points," said Los Angeles forward Jarret Stoll. "We couldn't give them any and we needed both of them."
Niklas Backstrom stopped only 11 shots for a Wild team that entered Tuesday's game at the Xcel Energy Center having won three of four. Minnesota is five points back of the Stars, Avalanche and Kings in the standings.
"They took it to us and we didn't fight back," said Minnesota forward Kyle Brodziak.
The offensive surge began 44 seconds after the game's opening faceoff. Slava Voynov fired a shot from the point that deflected off Williams in the right face-off circle and through the pads of Backstrom.
Dwight King potted Los Angeles' second goal. Left uncovered in front, King directed a Kopitar pass behind the Wild netminder at 9:39. Kopitar then finished off a give-and-go with Dustin Brown at 18:38.
Jordan Nolan completed the scoring at the 15:01 mark of the second period.Game Notes
Bernier posted his fifth career shutout...Brown collected two assists and now has nine points (five goals, four assists) in the last five games...The Kings improved to 18-0-2 when scoring three-plus goals this season...Brodziak played in his 400th career NHL game.