Talbot turns in 2nd straight shutout, Oilers blank Kings 2-0
EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) If goalie Cam Talbot is getting worn out after making his NHL-leading 65th start of the season Monday night, it's certainly not showing.
Talbot stopped 35 shots for his second consecutive shutout and seventh this season as the Edmonton Oilers ended an eight-game homestand with a 2-0 victory over the Los Angeles Kings.
"I think the more I play, the better I feel and the more confident I get," Talbot said. "Day in and day out. And anytime you can pick up some big wins, it just kind of carries over and you just feel good going into the next one."
Patrick Maroon and Milan Lucic scored for the Oilers, who won their fourth in a row to move one point ahead of Calgary and into a tie for second place in the Pacific Division with Anaheim. Leon Draisaitl and Connor McDavid each had a pair of assists.
McDavid leads the NHL with 82 points.
"Cam has been great for us all year," McDavid said. "For him to play like that in back-to-back games - two of the biggest games of the year for us - he was great."
Jonathan Quick stopped 29 shots for the fading Kings, who have lost four of five, further dashing their playoff hopes.
"We just dug ourselves into a hole right away. Going down two goals at this time of year against teams we're playing, it's certainly not the way you want to start the game and it's obviously tough to play catch-up hockey," Los Angeles forward Anze Kopitar said.
Maroon batted the rebound of McDavid's shot out of midair and past Quick just 64 seconds into the game. It was Maroon's 25th goal of the season - his previous career high was 12.
The Oilers made it 2-0 on the power play with seven minutes left in the opening period as Lucic corralled a loose puck in the crease and slid it under Quick for his 17th. The goal ended a streak of 34 consecutive penalty kills on the road for the Kings.
The Oilers outshot Los Angeles 15-7 in the first, but the Kings recovered and had 28 the rest of the way as Talbot stood tall in net.
The Kings had a power play late in the third, but were unable to get anything past Talbot.
"It's a huge win," Draisaitl said. "We play in our division quite a bit more down the stretch and this was a great step for us to try and separate ourselves from the rest."
NOTES: The Oilers lead the five-game season series 2-1. The next time the teams face each other is March 28, also in Edmonton. ... Quick was pulled after giving up two goals on seven shots during a 5-2 loss in Calgary on Sunday. ... Talbot's seven shutouts this season are the most for an Oilers goalie since Tommy Salo in 2001-02.
Kings: Return home to host the Winnipeg Jets on Thursday.
Oilers: At the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday.
Updated March 21, 2017