A look back on Brett Hextall’s two-goal game.

Brett Hextall scored two goals at Toyota Sports Center on Wednesday. The only thing weird about it was the uniform he was wearing — the sandstone-red-and-white of the Phoenix Coyotes.

“A couple days before I left to come to Phoenix, I was working out at the (TSC) gym,” Hextall said. “I thought, it’s weird that I’ll be back to play on the other side and I’ll be the enemy.”

As the son of the Kings’ assistant general manager Ron Hextall, the 23-year-old forward is privy to some perks. Summer access to an NHL gym is a big one. So are the genes of three generations of hockey history–great-grandfather Bryan had a Hall of Fame career; grandfather Bryan Jr. carved out a 10-year career in the NHL; great-uncle Dennis was once a winger for the Kings; while Ron was among the best goalies of his generation.

Brett Hextall’s own lineage is interesting.
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Kings 3, Phoenix 2, shootout.

Of the many questions they have faced this season, the Kings answered the biggest of them all on Wednesday: They will participate in the playoffs.

A dominant victory over a possible first-round playoff opponent would have been a nice luxury. A 3-2 shootout win, in which Jonathan Quick stopped two out of the three shooters and Michal Handzus and Jarret Stoll beat Ilya Bryzgalov, got the job done.

The Kings moved into fourth place in a still-tight Western Conference playoff race, and have the inside track on home-ice advantage for the first round. Stoll also scored in regulation off a terrific Dustin Brown set-up, and Kyle Clifford scored off a terrific Wayne Simmonds set-up.

The Kings finished 3-3 against the Coyotes in the regular season, winning the last two.

Here are a few more notes that won’t make tomorrow’s editions:
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