LOS ANGELES (AP)Brendan Lemieux scored in his first game back after a suspension and the Los Angeles Kings ended the Minnesota Wild’s eight-game winning streak with a 2-1 victory Saturday night.
Phillip Danault also scored for the Kings, Jonathan Quick made 29 saves, and L.A. swept its two-game homestand.
Marcus Foligno had a goal for the Wild, who hadn’t lost in regulation since a 5-4 loss at Florida on Nov. 20. Kaapo Kahkonen made 25 saves.
Lemieux was held out of five games for biting Ottawa’s Brady Tkachuk on Nov. 27. But he put the Kings ahead 2-1 midway through the third period, using two Wild defenders as a natural screen to score his fifth goal of the season on a wrist shot from the slot.
Mats Zuccarello had two sharp-angle shots on net with less than 15 seconds to play, but the Kings were able to hold on.
Minnesota and Los Angeles traded goals in the second period. Foligno redirected Matt Dumba’s shot in as the Wild’s power play was about to expire, giving them a 1-0 lead that would last 78 seconds. It was Minnesota’s fifth special teams tally in its past four games.
Danault responded with 5:31 left in the period, putting in his own rebound off Kahkonen’s pad save for his fourth goal.
The Kings played most of the game with five defensemen after Alexander Edler sustained a left leg injury early in the first period. His ankle bent awkwardly when he fell into the boards on a hit by Wild forward Brandon Duhaime, and was unable to put any weight on it as he was helped off the ice.
Drew Doughty was busy in Edler’s absence, playing a game-high 28:03. That total could have been higher, had Doughty not taken two trips to the penalty box for interference in the second.
NOTES: Wild D Jonas Brodin did not play because of an upper-body injury. . Wild F Frederick Gaudreau has missed the past six games in COVID-19 protocol but will join the team in Las Vegas on Sunday and could play tomorrow night, coach Dean Evason said.
Wild: At Vegas Golden Knights on Sunday night.
Kings: At Tampa Bay on Tuesday night.
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