Calgary, AB (SportsNetwork.com) - The Calgary Flames will be going to the playoffs, while the Los Angeles Kings won't have an opportunity to return to the Stanley Cup.
Thanks to 33 saves from Jonas Hiller, the Flames punched their ticket to the postseason with a 3-1 win over the Kings on Thursday.
There will be a new Stanley Cup champion this season, as the Kings became the first Cup champion to miss the postseason the following year since Carolina in 2007.
"We played hard. I got no complaints about anything to do with our team," said Los Angeles head coach Darrryl Sutter. "Give the Calgary Flames lots of credit. Now, I get to pull for them."
The Flames, who made the playoffs for the first time since the 2008-09 season, have 97 points and are in third place in the Pacific Division, two back of Vancouver.
Jiri Hudler posted two goals and an assist while Johnny Gaudreau had a goal and an assist for the Flames, who have won five of their last six.
"That's the most noise I have heard playing in a hockey game," said Gaudreau. "This is a really exciting night."
Jordan Nolan scored and Jonathan Quick made 22 saves for the Kings, who have lost their last three.
The Flames took a 1-0 lead with 7:45 to play in the first period when Gaudreau snapped the puck in from the slot for his 24th of the season.
Hudler made it a 2-0 game just over two minutes later when his big blast from the slot beat Quick cleanly.
Hiller held firm in the second period by stopping all 12 shots he faced, but the Kings were able to make it a one-goal game five minutes into the third.
Alec Martinez threw the puck on net from a sharp angle at the left side and it went off the pad of Hiller to the left circle where Nolan buried it.
The Kings, though, were unable to net the equalizer and Hudler sealed the win with an empty-netter inside of a minute to play.
Calgary, which went 23-13-5 at home this season, plays in Winnipeg on Saturday ... Los Angeles, which was just 15-18-8 on the road, closes its season at home against San Jose on Saturday ... Calgary had the only power play of the game and failed to score.