Calgary Flames vs. Los Angeles Kings Pick & Prediction MARCH 30th 2024

If the Los Angeles Kings needed a reminder of the importance of every game, they received it in their last outing. The Kings saw their four-game winning streak end after they lost 4-1 to the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday, dropping Los Angeles into the Western Conference’s second wild-card position.

The Kings (38-23-11, 87 points) will be looking for a bounce-back performance Saturday when they visit the flickering Calgary Flames.

“We have to forget it,” interim coach Jim Hiller said, according to “The season’s winding down, every game is important. I know we talked a lot about, ‘Oh, it’s Edmonton,’ but every one is important. You have to put this one behind us and take on the next challenge in Calgary.”

The Kings enter Saturday’s game one point behind the Vegas Golden Knights for third place in the Pacific Division and have played one fewer game. Los Angeles has a five-point edge over the St. Louis Blues in the wild-card race.

The Kings also must move past any lingering disappointment regarding their struggles against the Oilers. Edmonton — which is second in the Pacific — has knocked Los Angeles out of the playoffs in each of the past two seasons, and won three of four meetings this season.

The Flames return home after a disappointing 5-3 loss to the St. Louis Blues on Thursday. Calgary (33-34-5, 71 points) is on the verge of being eliminated from the playoffs for a second consecutive season, sitting 16 points out of a playoff position with 10 games remaining and riding a five-game skid.

But the Flames likely deserved a better fate in St. Louis. They had a pair of third-period goals disallowed. One was correctly taken off the board because of an offside. However, on a goal that would have given Calgary a 4-3 edge, the official ruled the puck was hit by a high stick, but on replay, it was clearly a defender’s stick that hit the puck before Calgary’s Andrei Kuzmenko corralled it and tucked it into the net.

“We deserved better. Like I said, we all saw it, I think he made a mistake on that (high-stick) call, not letting that go, call it a goal after. It’s hockey, obviously in the position we’re in, it hurts,” forward Jonathan Huberdeau said. “If we stick to the same effort we had (Thursday), we’ll be fine for the rest of the way. We got to build off that, take a little bit of positive from tonight, and take it for next game.”

The Flames were in the playoff mix but have lost eight of 10 since the trade deadline. The quest will be to keep spirits up amid the struggles while playing out the string.

“We kept pushing, and that’s a good thing,” Calgary coach Ryan Huska said. “You have to make sure that gets ingrained in you, that no matter what the situation is, you keep pushing. And I bet you, to a man, our guys were pleased with the way they pushed, and that’s what we want to see from them.”

–Field Level Media

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