Jonathan Quick made 35 saves in his sixth career playoff shutout, and the Los Angeles Kings opened their second-round Western Conference series with a 2-0 victory over the visiting San Jose Sharks.
LOS ANGELES — Jonathan Quick made 35 saves in his sixth career playoff shutout, and the Los Angeles Kings opened their second-round Western Conference series with a 2-0 victory over the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday night.
Slava Voynov and Mike Richards each had a goal and an assist in the defending Stanley Cup champions’ 11th straight victory at Staples Center since March.
With yet another dominant playoff performance by Quick, Los Angeles opened the NHL’s fourth all-California playoff series with its fifth straight victory after an 0-2 start to its title defense.
The Kings’ Conn Smythe Trophy winner allowed a mere 10 goals in the six-game first round against the St. Louis Blues before frustrating the Sharks, whose superior speed and passing failed to produce anything.
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“We didn’t have our best first period, and it could have got out of reach quickly if Quickie wasn’t back there making some big saves,” said Richards, the Kings’ leading postseason scorer.
Antti Niemi stopped 18 shots for sixth-seeded San Jose, which swept Vancouver in the first round.
Game 2 of the best-of-seven series is Thursday in Los Angeles.
Opening a playoff series at home for the first time since 1992, the fifth-seeded Kings got just enough offense.
San Jose scored 15 goals in four games against Vancouver, but couldn’t beat Quick despite largely dominating play — particularly while outshooting Los Angeles 16-4 in the third period.
“We feel we can play with them,” Sharks center Joe Pavelski said. “We felt we played a good game. After tonight, everyone in this room feels they (the Kings) are beatable. It’s not going to be easy, obviously.
“They are Stanley Cup champs, a team that has learned how to win.”
Other playoff game
At Penguins 4, Senators 1
Paul Martin and Chris Kunitz scored power-play goals and Pascal Dupuis added his sixth goal of the playoffs as top-seeded Pittsburgh beat seventh-seeded Ottawa in Game 1 of their East semifinal series.
Evgeni Malkin extended his points streak to seven games with a goal and an assist for the Penguins while Tomas Vokoun stopped 35 shots to win his third straight since replacing struggling starter Marc-Andre Fleury.
Colin Greening scored for the Senators. Craig Anderson made 26 saves but Ottawa had no answer for Pittsburgh’s power play, which was 2 for 4.
• The Dallas Stars fired coach Glen Gulutzan, who failed to get the team to the playoffs in each of his two seasons. The Stars have missed the playoffs for five consecutive years.
Gulutzan, 41, had a 64-57-9 record.