When you go to a hockey game, you hope and pray for a game like the Kings played tonight. Chippy play, 4 fights, and a 3-1 victory over a division rival. The energy at this game was palpable and the Kings did not disappoint in front of a packed Staples Center crowd. Even the atmosphere after the game in front of Staples Center was raucous.
Here are some thoughts to chew on from tonight’s contest:
-The Kings finally got some momentum on the power play, scoring twice on 8 tries.
-Jack Johnson had another great game and added a goal and an assist.
-Justin WIlliams continues to be red-hot, scoring the game-winner on the power play for his 7th goal and 15th point in 14 games. His point streak now spans 8 games.
-Kopitar was quietly strong tonight with 2 assists.
-Doughty had one major hiccup which led directly to Jamie Benn’s goal. Instead of clearing the puck around the boards he tried to slow the play and control the puck. However, Benn had too much speed and blew past Doughty. Other than that he was pretty good.
-I think Stoll’s disallowed goal should have counted. First, the contact occured outside the crease and second, the contact I would compare to the “bump” Brodeur took in the 08-09 playoffs from Jussi Jokinen that was not considered illegal. Bump-a-Marty Party!
-Clifford, Drewiske, Simmonds, and Greene all dropped the mitts. Clifford is by far the fighter of those 4, scoring a 1 punch doozie on former King Brandon Segal.
-Drewiske did not look comfortable fighting, but I thought he had an excellent game. He really looks comfortable and confident on the ice.
-Greene took an instigator and a misconduct in his fight during the first period, but it was a response to a non call after Stoll took a blindside hit. Kudos to Greene for standing up for his teammate.
-Speaking of bad hits, there were at least 4 ugly hits in the game, or at least 4 that drew penalties. The worst being Burish’s 5 minute major boarding penalty.
-Kudos to Lehtonen for fighting the traffic, because the Kings were in his grill all night and he did a good job for the most part. Handzus was visibly upset for himself for missing two tip chances in front of the Dallas net.
-The 3rd period saw 41 penalty minutes combined. Did I mention it was a great game?
-Quick continues to be solid and limit rebounds. Even though he did allow some second chances, they were handled well.
-The Kings are 2-0 on the season series against the Stars this year.
-Finally, during a stoppage of play, the Kings Ice Crew threw out tennis balls with player numbers on them and if that player scored you could turn in your tennis ball and redeem a prize. I caught a tennis ball with #26 painted all over it, but sadly Handzus did not score. On the bright side, I got a free Michal Handzus tennis ball!
The Kings face the Islanders on Saturday at 7:30 pm PT.
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