— The giant-killing Los Angeles Kings extended their magical playoff run, moving to just one win from their first Stanley Cup Finals appearance since 1993 with a 2-1 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes Thursday.
With Dwight King’s go-ahead goal 1.47 minutes into the third period breaking the deadlock, the eighth-seeded Kings took a commanding 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven Western Conference final.
Los Angeles, who crushed the third-seeded Coyotes 4-0 in Phoenix Tuesday, have now won eight consecutive post-season games.
The Kings upset the top-seeded Vancouver Canucks in the first round of the playoffs before going on to sweep the second-seeded St Louis Blues and advance to the Western Conference final.
Phoenix, which edged Los Angeles in a scoreless first period with 11 shots on goal versus eight, opened the scoring when center Daymond Langkow powered home a wrist shot 1.03 minutes into the second period.
The Kings responded just 2.07 minutes later, center Anze Kopitar breaking clear following assists by Dustin Brown and Justin Williams before deftly backhanding the puck past Mike Smith into the net.
With cries of “Let’s Go Kings” echoing around the Staples Center, Los Angeles struck early in the third period when left wing King scored with a wrist shot to put his team 2-1 ahead.
Roared on by a sellout crowd of 18,367, the Kings held on to push the Coyotes to the brink of elimination. Game Four is in Los Angeles Sunday.Oilers coach on way out
The struggling Edmonton Oilers will not renew head coach Tom Renney’s contract after two losing seasons, the NHL team said Thursday.
Renney, who was a head coach with the Vancouver Canucks and New York Rangers before joining Edmonton in 2010, had a 57-85-22 record in two seasons with the Oilers, finishing last overall in 2011 and second last in 2012.
The Oilers, who have not made the playoffs since losing in the Stanley Cup Finals in 2006, finished the 2011-12 season 21 points out of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference. — Reuters