PREVIEW: LA Kings fighting for playoff spot, host Flames (7p, FSW)


The Los Angeles Kings will try to move back into a playoff spot when they host the Calgary Flames at Staples Center on Monday night.

The Kings lost at the Edmonton Oilers 3-2 on Saturday night to fall out of third place in the Pacific Division with six games left.

Los Angeles entered Sunday with 89 points, same as the St. Louis Blues, who are currently sitting in the second wild-card spot.

Black & White: Cal Petersen

The Kings are two points behind the third-place Anaheim Ducks, who beat the Edmonton Oilers Sunday. The Blues next play Tuesday against the visiting San Jose Sharks, who beat the Flames 5-1 on Saturday for their seventh straight win.

The Kings (41-28-7) earned points in the first three games of the four-game road trip through Canada, allowing them to stay close in the tightest NHL playoff race since the advent of the Western and Eastern Conference format in 1993-94.

“We got points that we really need to stay in the battle here, but there is no room for error,” Kings coach John Stevens said. “There are too many teams that are edging along for spots in the playoffs, so we’ll get our rest on the days we need to rest, and we’ll need to be ready to go when it’s time to go. But, tough trip. It doesn’t end here. We play Calgary in a day from now, so we’ve got to get out the door, get home, get some rest and get ready for a big game at home against Calgary.”

The Flames (35-31-10) were just one point out of third place in the Pacific Division on Feb. 26, but have gone 3-9-1 since. They come to Los Angeles riding a five-game losing streak that’s put them nine points behind the Ducks with six games left.

The Kings will get their first look at Calgary forward Nick Shore, who they traded to the Ottawa Senators in February for defenseman Dion Phaneuf. Shore was then traded to the Flames two weeks later for a seventh-round draft pick in 2019.

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