Previewing the Los Angeles Kings’ 2012-13 season:
Game 39 @ Anaheim, April 7, 2013, 6pm PST (9pm EST)
After picking up wins in their last two, including a 4-1 matinee victory over Edmonton on Saturday, the Los Angeles Kings hope to make it three-straight as they travel cross-town to take on the hated Anaheim Ducks in the third of four meetings between the Pacificrivals this season.
While it’s not a priority for the Kings, they are hoping to make the race for the division title interesting. As of Saturday night, Los Angeles trails the Ducks by eight points for the Pacific lead and if all goes well on Sunday, they could be only trailing them by six points by night’s end. But this isn’t about winning a division for the Kings so much as it’s just about remaining strong and keeping together as they prepare to defend their Stanley Cup crown when the playoffs begin in just a few weeks.
The last time the Kings were in Anaheim, it was a disaster. Back on February 2, Jonathan Quick was pulled after allowing two weak goals and Jonathan Bernier (who had made his first appearance of the season at that point) fared no better as the Kings lost 7-4. While the Kings did get their revenge in a 5-2 win on February 25 in Los Angeles, nothing would be more satisfying than entering Honda Center and leaving the Ducks faithful bitterly disappointed.
Having started Jonathan Quick against Edmonton on Saturday, the Kings will most likely go with Jonathan Bernier as their starter in Anaheim. Bernier is coming a 23-save shutout performance on Thursday versus Minnesota and he hopes only to increase his already-high confidence against the 25-8-5 Ducks.
At 22-13-3, the Kings are picking their right time to get hot and hope to get continued production out of Jeff Carter who has scored in four of his last five games and Justin Williams who is currently riding a six-game point-streak. The Ducks meanwhile have a hot hand of their own as Andrew Cogliano has scored in his last four outings so the Kings will have to find a way to contain him should they hope to leave Orange County victorious.
There is never any love lost in this bitter rivalry and Sunday evening will add another exciting chapter to the story that is the Kings versus Ducks. We’ll see how everything pans out.
Enjoy the game!