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Anze Kopitar scores 4 goals, Andrian Kempe nets shootout winner as Kings top Jets


Anze Kopitar scored four goals in regulation and Adrian Kempe had the lone score in the shootout as the Kings rallied on Tuesday night to beat the Winnipeg Jets 6-5.

Kopitar, the Kings’ captain, had a natural hat-trick in the second period. It was the sixth career hat-trick for the 35-year-old and the second time he has scored four times in an NHL game.

Gabriel Vilardi also scored and Drew Doughty had a few assists for the Kings. Pheonix Copley made 26 saves as Los Angeles (34-20-8) finished a five-game trip 2-2-1.

Josh Morrissey had his first four-point game, finishing with two goals and two assists for Winnipeg, which is in its first four-point game of the season. Winnipeg is 1-5-1 in its last seven games.

Kevin Stenlund had a few goals and Kyle Connor also scored for the Jets. Mark Scheifele and Dylan DeMelo each contributed two assists. Connor Hellebuyck stopped 32 shots as the Jets closed a three-game homestand.

Vilardi tied the game at 5-all with 4:06 left in the third period when he picked up a loose puck and shot past Hellebuyck.

The Jets led 2-0 after the first period and 5-3 after the second.

A minute after Winnipeg went empty on their first power play, Morrissey recorded his 12th goal of the season in a heads-up play. Scheifele was at the side of the net in Los Angeles trying to ram the puck past Copley. As the puck slid into the crease, Morrissey ran in and hit it into the net at 15:52.

Blake Wheeler assisted on goal and recorded the 600th assist of his NHL career. He is the 97th player in league history to reach the milestone.

Morrissey made it 2-0 just over a minute and a half later with a high shot that beat Copley at 17:35.

Los Angeles came on the board at 26 seconds into the second period.

Six seconds after Jets defender Neal Pionk was called up for holding, Kevin Fiala sent a pass to Kopitar and he fired Hellebuyck’s puck for his 21st of the season.

Winnipeg responded with Connor’s 27th goal to make it 3-1, but Kopitar equalized by tapping in two goals.

First Kopitar tipped an Alexander Edler punt shot at 9:14 and did the same with a Doughty shot at 10:43.

Stenlund gave the Jets a 5–3 lead at noon and scored with the short hand six minutes later.

The Kings had four mid-frame power plays, including one that rolled nine seconds into third.

Kopitar scored his fourth goal of the game with a slap shot that beat Hellebuyck 1:26 from the third to cut Winnipeg’s lead to 5–4.

Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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