The Los Angeles Kings desperately needed to add some supplemental scoring this season.
Anze Kopitar didn’t score a goal during the first 10 games. Dustin Brown has scored just two goals in his last 24 games. Mike Richards has scored just one goal in his last 11 games.
So young Tyler Toffoli has come to the rescue. He scored twice in a 3-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues, learning his fourth game-winning goal of the season.
He has embraced the bump-and-grind style Kings coach Darryl Sutter demands – and he has learned to play big in front of the net.
“I think you can’t always score pretty goals, and I hadn’t scored in a while,” he told Los Angeles reporters after the game. “So I think you’ve got to get in the dirty areas, and that’s how you’re going to score goals when you’re not putting up the numbers, the goals that you wanted. So you’ve got to get in those dirty areas.”
Toffoli had not scored since Nov. 17, which drew Sutter’s attention.
“I don’t think he’s too worried about me scoring goals,” Toffoli told reporters. “I think he realizes that my game slipped, and I wasn’t working as hard as I should’ve been. I think tonight I wanted to come out and really have a strong game against a really strong team, so I think I did a pretty good job. A couple things to clean up, but at the same time it’s obviously good to score again.”