Game 6: Kings Win 2-1 (SO), fall to 2-2-2
LOS ANGELES – In their final home game for two weeks, the Los Angeles Kings kept a familiar theme going: they had trouble scoring. On the bright side, they were able to score power-play markers in their second-straight game, tonight’s courtesy of Dustin Brown as the captain potted his first of the year. Outside of that, it was a fairly uneventful loss for the Kings as the Nashville Predators improve to 2-2-3 on the season thanks to a 24-save performance by Pekka Rinne.
The Predators were able to get to Jonathan Quick right away as Brandon Yip opened the scoring just 58 seconds into the game. The Kings, though, were not deterred as they put the pressure on Nashville and eventually scored as Brown tied the game at 13:08 of the opening frame. The Kings outshot the Preds 10-3 in the first but the game was tied after 20 minutes nonetheless.
There wasn’t much to miss during the second period. With five shots apiece, neither team was able to muster any chances nor was either goaltender particularly busy.
In the third, things became a bit more exciting as both teams began to turn the contest into more of a wide-open affair with both sides generating some key chances along the way. The Kings outshot Nashville 7-3 but again, nothing was settled.
After a quiet overtime session, the Kings went to the shootout for the second-straight game. After Jeff Carter was stopped on the first attempt, both teams traded goals twice as David Legwand, Mike Richards, Craig Smith and Dustin Brown all lit the lamp. The score remained tied until Round 6 when Anze Kopitar scored. However, Gabriel Bourque deked out Quick to score and keep the shootout going – and on it went until Round 8 when Nashville’s Sergei Kostitsyn scored to snap Los Angeles’ mini two-game winning streak.
While it is a disappointing way to end a home stand, the Kings can take some comfort in the fact that they have now earned points in their last four games. While their offense still remains to get themselves into a groove, the Kings’ defense continues to get better as now Jake Muzzin has shown that his defensive game should be taken just as seriously as the likes of Scuderi and Martinez. He may not be at their level quite yet but after some key stops tonight, Muzzin certainly appears to going in the right direction.
Now, the Los Angeles Kings must temporarily forfeit their home and make way from the 2013 Grammy Awards. But it’s okay because on Saturday night, the Kings travel up the road to Anaheim to face the hated Ducks. This will be the first in the series of this season’s Freeway Faceoff and we’ll see if they can rebound on Saturday night.