The second version of the Salt Lake Shootout turned into a scoring spree Saturday night, when one Salt Lake City native was credited with two assists and another absorbed some blame in the flurry of goals.
Trevor Lewis, who played for Brighton High School's hockey team, assisted on the Los Angeles Kings' fourth and fifth goals of a 7-5 victory over Vancouver in an NHL preseason game at Vivint Smart Home Arena.
Vancouver goaltender Richard Bachman, who also was born in Salt Lake City but grew up mostly in the Denver area, played the third period for the Canucks and allowed three goals. Kings defenseman Daniel Brickley, another Utahn, didn't dress Saturday, amid the team's crowded roster at this stage.
The Kings had not done much scoring in the preseason, but that trend ended as new coach Todd McLellan's systems began to click.
“It takes a little bit of time to get it down, but we're slowly starting to get it,” Lewis said. “We're starting to see it pay off a little bit with more offensive-zone time and more offensive-zone chances. It was good to get some goals on the board, for sure.”
Michael Amadio and Jaret Anderson-Dolan each scored twice for the Kings; Adam Gaudette had two goals for the Canucks.
The attendance of 10,014 represented about a 20-percent drop-off from the two teams’ visit on a Monday night last season, when the Salt Lake Shootout’s marketing capitalized on the novelty of the NHL’s first appearance in the Salt Lake Valley in 10 years. The Kings, who beat Vancouver 4-1 at Vivint last year, are scheduled to return again in 2020.
Saturday's crowd clearly enjoyed the volume of scoring. Backup goaltenders Jack Campbell of the Kings and Zane McIntyre of the Canucks played well in the middle of the game, but both teams gave up goals in spurts in the first and third periods, partly resulting from defensive lapses.
Arena administrators learned something from last year's experience, keeping the building cooler and avoiding the issues with the ice that caused five lengthy delays in the first 11 minutes of the game.
McLellan used a young lineup, other than Lewis and and a few other recognizable names in the middle of the team's preseason schedule. Los Angeles played veterans Ilya Kovalchuk and Anze Kopitar last September in a 4-1 defeat of Vancouver at Vivint, but they were missing Saturday.
This year's game was equally entertaining, though. The teams scored goals nine seconds apart in the middle of the first period, as Amadio followed a breakaway by Vancouver's Tyler Graovac with his first of two scores in the period. The Kings scored three times in their first seven shots on goal.
And then the Canucks notched two goals within 19 seconds in the third period, with former Kings player Tanner Pearson and Josh Leivo scoring to cut Los Angeles' lead to 5-4.
Lewis had assisted Hutton for the only goal of the second period and passed to Alec Martinez, who delivered a power-play goal early in the third period.
Lewis, 32, is entering his 10th full season in the NHL as a two-time Stanley Cup winner and the most successful hockey player to have grown up in the state. He's coming off a disappointing 2018-19 season for himself and the team, with a fractured foot having caused him to miss 37 games, but Saturday's hometown performance was a good sign.
“It was awesome,” Lewis said. “There were a lot of people here again, and obviously, looking up there and seeing my family again is pretty cool.”
• Michael Amadio scores two first-period goals as the Los Angeles Kings beat Vancouver 7-5 in an NHL preseason game Saturday at Vivint Smart Home Arena.
• Salt Lake City native Trevor Lewis is credited with assists on the Kings’ fourth and fifth goals; another Utahn, Daniel Brickley, doesn’t dress for the Kings.
• The attendance of 10,014 is about 2,300 less than last September.