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Kings look to keep up offensive momentum as they host Blackhawks

Chicago (26-12-8) at Los Angeles (19-20-7) 10:30 p.m. EST

LOS ANGELES (Ticker) -- gIt's taken nearly four months, but the

Los Angeles Kings' offense has finally begun to show signs of

life. And it's a good thing, too, because the Kings are about

to face one of the stingiest defenses in the NHL.

Riding a rare two-game winning streak, Los Angeles returns home

Thursday to take on the Chicago Blackhawks. The second-lowest

scoring team in the Western Conference this season, the Kings

are coming off a pair of strong performances in road victories

over Minnesota and Colorado just before the All-Star Break.

They scored three second-period goals on January 20 en route to

a 5-2 triumph over the Wild, then followed that up a day later

with a 6-5 squeaker over the Avalanche. The Kings scored five

tallies in the second stanza, including a pair by left wing

Alexander Frolov, but had to sweat it out as Colorado nearly

erased a four-goal deficit before falling just short.

The 11 goals the Kings scored between the two contests were the

most they have posted in any two-game span this season. Oddly

enough, that came on the heels of a four-game span in which they

were outscored, 15-4.

As they get set to face the Blackhawks - who have allowed just

116 goals, fourth-fewest in the league - the Kings have to hope

they can carry over their recent momentum after eight days off.

The Blackhawks, still grappling for position in the top half of

the West's playoff picture, rebounded from a two-game skid on

Wednesday with a 3-2 victory over the Anaheim Ducks. Nikolai

Khabibulin made 36 saves, including 15 in the second period, to

help put an end to Chicago's brief losing streak.


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