sport

Kings on verge of final spot

The Chicago Blackhawks' hopes of retaining their Stanley Cup title are fading after they slumped to a 5-2 defeat to the Los Angeles Kings.

The Kings' victory means they now only need one more win to reach the title match for the second time in three years and leave last season's winners Chicago out of the competition.

Los Angeles, the 2012 champions, were in dominant mood from the off at Staples Center and first-period goals from Jake Muzzin, Marian Gaborik and Dustin Brown put them in complete charge before Drew Doughty made it 4-0 in the second period.

At that point, in-form Los Angeles had scored 14 of the last 17 goals in the series.

Chicago threatened a comeback with efforts from Brandon Saad and Bryan Bickell but Los Angeles wrapped up the win with Tanner Pearson's goal late on as they moved to within touching distance of a return to the Stanley Cup Final.