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Doughty: Kings 'a much better team' than Game 1 performance

Juan Ocampo / National Hockey League / Getty

The Los Angeles Kings' 7-4 loss to the Edmonton Oilers on Monday night marked their 14th playoff meeting in the last three years, and veteran defenseman Drew Doughty thinks it was his team's "poorest" showing yet.

"We're a much better team than that. We're a very good, solid two-way team," he said postgame. "We don't usually give up that many chances. We've always had good goaltending here, but we also do a good job making it easier for the goalie in this organization. Tonight, we did not. ... (Cam Talbot) made a ton of great saves, too, so you can't be putting any blame on him.

"It's all the guys in front of him."

The Oilers outshot the Kings 45-37 while holding a 23-16 edge in high-danger chances at all strengths, per Natural Stat Trick. Edmonton also converted on three of its four power-play chances, while the Kings failed to score on two opportunities.

All of those stats were uncharacteristic of Los Angeles in the regular season. The Kings boasted the NHL's second-best penalty kill (84.6%) while conceding the third-fewest goals per game (2.56) and fourth-fewest shots per contest (28). They also allowed 10.57 high-danger chances per 60 minutes at all strengths, placing them among the stingiest teams in the league.

Doughty said he was surprised by the amount of mistakes the Kings made against Edmonton.

"That's not our motto; that's not the way we play. It's frustrating," he said.

"We're letting their top guys get way too much speed and just go through the neutral zone like it's nothing," Doughty explained. "It's tough on the D when those guys are flying. We gotta fix that, and we know that."

The Kings won Game 1 against the Oilers in 2022 and 2023 but went on to lose both Game 2s and the series as a whole.

Doughty is looking forward to the opportunity Wednesday's rematch will bring.

"It's a seven-game series. You've got to (be the) first to four," he said. "We're down 1-0 but we can easily make it 1-1 next game. ... Just have a short memory and be ready to win the next one. That's it."

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