March 25: Kings 5, Blackhawks 4, United Center

Looking back before looking ahead to the Western Conference finals …

Dustin Brown scored the winning goal and Jonathan Quick made 21 saves in a game that proved the Kings could skate with the speedy Blackhawks after all. Anze Kopitar, Jarret Stoll, Dwight King and rookie Tyler Toffoli also scored for the Kings, who improved their record to 18-12-2. Kopitar’s goal was noteworthy because it was his last of the regular season. He did not score in the final 16 regular-season games and has only two goals in 13 playoff games, a fact that has raised eyebrows among plenty of press box observers.

By way of comparison, Kopitar was the Kings’ leading scorer during the regular season with 42 points in 47 games (10 goals, 32 assists). He had 20 points in 20 games during the Kings’ Stanley Cup run last spring (eight goals, 12 assists). The Kings closed with a 9-4-3 record in their first 16 games to finish in fifth place in the Western Conference standings (27-16-5). The Blackhawks compiled a league-leading 36-7-5 mark.

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