The Kings were good, bad and indifferent Saturday afternoon at Staples Center.

They couldn’t be beaten, though.

They gave away a two-goal lead but still defeated the Colorado Avalanche 3-2 in a shootout despite having one of those rare games in which they weren’t at their best and almost paid for it with a defeat. They instead won their third in a row and ninth in 10 games.

“I think we’re on the right track,” Kings center Anze Kopitar said. “Is our game as sharp as it can be? Probably not, but we’re collecting points and that’s what it is this time of year. You have to collect points even though you’re maybe not playing the best hockey.

“The way this Pacific Division has been going, you lose a couple you fall back in a pretty big way. So, we just want to keep on going, keep on plugging away. We gutted it out (Saturday). It shows the character of the team and the mental toughness.”

Rookie goaltender Martin Jones stopped all three Avalanche shooters in a shootout, including a remarkable save after Colorado’s Matt Duchene faked him to the ice. Duchene appeared to have Jones beaten, but the 23-year-old stuck out his right leg and denied the Avalanche forward.

“Pretty good move,” Jones said. “Got me out of position. I just tried to throw my legs out and take away as much of the bottom of the net as I could and I got lucky there. He made a nice fake on the shot and got me to go down a little bit.”

Jones handled shots from PA Parenteau and Ryan O’Reilly a good deal easier in the second and third rounds. Kopitar scored the only goal in the shootout and made Jones a winner for the eighth consecutive start to begin his NHL career, tying a league record.

Bob Froese of the Philadelphia Flyers also won his first eight starts to begin his career in 1982-83. Ray Emery of the Ottawa Senators won nine consecutive decisions spread over three seasons beginning in 2002-03, but they weren’t all starts, to begin his career.

Jones said he had no idea he matched Froese’s mark and seemed confused when reporters asked him about the significance of such a remarkable start to his career. After all, Jones would have been in the minor leagues if No. 1 starter Jonathan Quick hadn’t suffered a groin injury Nov. 12.