LOS ANGELES — The winning streak seemed in serious jeopardy for the Los Angeles Kings after the Carolina Hurricanes scored twice in the final seven minutes of regulation to tie the score, and then held the puck and two members of the Kings on the ice for nearly three minutes to start overtime.
But the momentum changed in a hurry when Tanner Pearson brought puck into the Carolina zone and scored off his own rebound with 20 seconds left in overtime, lifting the Kings to their eighth consecutive victory, 3-2, on Saturday night at Staples Center.
“We’re winning in different ways,” Kings center Anze Kopitar said. “None of these wins are coming easy. We’re grinding and we’re getting after it.”
Kopitar, Pearson and Tyler Toffoli each had a goal and an assist for the Kings (20-8-3), who pulled within a win of their franchise record of nine straight victories from Jan. 21 to Feb. 6, 2010.
Jonathan Quick made 32 saves for Los Angeles.
Kings defenseman Drew Doughty and Kopitar were stuck on in the ice for nearly three minutes to start overtime. The Hurricanes maintained possession in the Los Angeles zone and were able to make personnel changes at the same time, but couldn’t get the puck past Quick.
“Even those guys that got stuck out in overtime, they’re dead tired out there, but they still dug deep down in the bucket to make sure that they do everything they can to keep the puck out of their net,” Kings coach John Stevens said. “It allowed us to get fresh guys on the ice eventually and score.”
Victor Rask prevented Quick from earning his 47th career shutout when he took a pass from Teuvo Teravainen and scored on the power play with 6:57 remaining. The Kings came in with the No. 1 penalty-kill unit in the league at 89 percent.
“That’s a real good penalty-kill unit,” Carolina coach Bill Peters said. “Our first power play probably wasn’t as good as we’d like, but we stayed with it and won a few little foot races to keep plays alive and then, obviously, Teravainen made a real good play to find Rasker in the seam.”
Elias Lindholm tied the score with 2:22 left, scoring off a rebound during a delayed penalty and with goalie Scott Darling pulled for an extra attacker.
Darling had 18 saves for the Hurricanes (11-10-7), who have lost five of their past six games and seven of nine.
“The guys did a great job battling and hanging in there,” Peters said. “Our power play got a great goal, a big goal at the time, and obviously the 6-on 5-goal, so special teams were real good.”
The Kings went 7:12 without a shot, but 16 seconds after Toffoli ended that spell he scored his 14th goal of the season for a 1-0 lead.
Toffoli had just been knocked down after colliding with Carolina center Jordan Staal in the neutral zone. Kopitar brought the puck deep into the Carolina zone, pulled up as three defenders converged and passed back to a wide-open Toffoli. He let the puck slide to his backhand and flicked it into the net at 6:27 of the second period.
“When I got up, I saw Kopi and Pearson going the other way, so I just kind of jumped in the rush,” Toffoli said.
Carolina nearly scored when defenseman Noah Hanifin hit the post at 8:41 of the second, but the Kings scored their second goal 35 seconds later.
Kopitar brought the puck down the middle with players on his left and right. He passed to Toffoli on his right and he took a shot from the circle. Kopitar stuck out his blade and the puck nicked off the tip, just enough to alter its course and get past Darling.
The Hurricanes have been outscored 14-3 in their last eight second periods.
NOTES: Except for the first-year expansion Vegas Golden Knights, Quick had faced the Hurricanes fewer times than any other team in the NHL. He entered Saturday’s game with a 4-2-0 record in six appearances against Carolina. … Pearson has two goals and five assists in his past six games. … The Kings came in ranked No. 1 in the NHL on the penalty kill at 89 percent and they killed 2 of 3 against Carolina. … Darling came in with a 1-0-2 career record against the Kings, a 1.97 goals-against average and .938 save percentage. … Hurricanes C Jordan Staal won 11-of-15 faceoffs.