The game in Boston started much the way the game in Columbus began; the Kings were getting run over. The Kings spent most of the first period in their own zone as the Bruins skated circles around them. However, much the way it was in Columbus, the Kings were the team to strike first.
Los Angeles got the scoring started on the powerplay as Dustin Brown redirected Anze Kopitar's shot from the point between Team U.S.A. teammate Tim Thomas' legs. The goal would be the first of 4 powerplay goals scored in the game.
Despite their 50% powerplay percentage, the Kings didn't do much else right. The Bruins managed to out-battle the Kings, control the puck and throw what seemed like way more than 33 shots on Jonathan Quick. Quick was once again the saving grace, keeping the game close when it easily could have been a runaway victory for the B's.
The Bruins, a team that has the least goals-for in the league, looked like a veritable offensive powerhouse with their 5-on-5 play. Yet it was the powerplay for the Bruins that got them on the board. Marco Sturm scored with 15:16 gone in the second and Mark Recchi tallied early in the third to take the lead. That lead only lasted a little over 3 minutes as Anze Kopitar found the back of the net on the powerplay. Kopitar has been a force, scoring 4 goals and 5 assists in the past 5 games.
The score remained knotted at 2 through overtime, leading to another shootout showdown for the opposite coast teams. It was a back and forth affair, but it was shooter number twelve Jarret Stoll that would decide the game. Kopitar also had a beautiful shootout marker, one-handing a backhander past Thomas a la Jussi Jokinen or Peter Forsberg.
It was the first game of their roadtrip where the Kings did not appear to control the play by any stretch of the imagination. By all accounts, the Kings squeaked one out in Boston on Saturday. Discipline was certainly a factor as the Kings gave the Bruins 7 chances on the man-advantage in the game. Wayne Simmonds took a bulk of the PIMs when he dropped the gloves in defense of Kopitar after a brutal but clean hit by Mark Stuart. Simmonds accumulated 19 penalty minutes for fighting, a game misconduct, unsportsmanlike conduct, and an instigator penalty. The infraction itself was quite innocuous.
The win moves the Kings past Colorado into 5th place in the West, Colorado still with a game at hand. The Kings end their roadtrip on Sunday in New Jersey. The Devils have had a spotty January, going 7-6-1.
Thanks again to the Kings Ice Crew and the folks at Barney's Beanery in Burbank for another great viewing party. The turnout was great and the atmosphere raucous.
About the Author
Written by Eric Cooney
Eric Cooney was born in Pennsylvania, grew up in North Carolina, and lives in Los Angeles, CA. He shares his thoughts on the NHL as one man who is a northerner, southerner, east coaster, and west coaster. Follow him on Twitter @EricCooney