Previewing the Los Angeles Kings’ 2012-13 season:
West Quarter Final, Game 2 @ St. Louis; May 2/13, 6:30pm PST (9:30pm EST)
For the first time since 2011, the Los Angeles Kings will enter a playoff game trailing in a series. There’s no reason to panic – unless, of course, the silver-and-black can’t improve offensively.
While they were able to take the St. Louis Blues to overtime in Game 1, the Kings know that Jonathan Quick was the only reason they got to overtime, with all due respect to Justin Williamswho scored the game-tying goal in the final minute of regulation.
Quick was nothing short of outstanding as he held his own stopping 41 shots – many of which glorious scoring chances – keeping a team in the game that really didn’t deserve to be considering how badly they got outplayed.
Unfortunately for Quick, it was his puck-handling miscue that led to St. Louis’ game-winner and just like that, the wind was taken right out of the Kings’ sails. But this series is far from over and if the defending champs want to believe that, they will need to step up their game in a few different areas.
In Game 1, the Kings could not get in sync offensively with each other. They generated very few scoring chances. Defensively, Los Angeles lacked something. While decent, their defenders could have used a bit more production and a lot more urgency. Physically, the Blues dominated Game 1 which is uncharacteristic of the Kings to have the short end in said department. Finally, if Los Angeles hopes to get back in this series, they will need to make a very conscious effort to stay of the penalty box as a Too Many Men call of all things cost them their first goal.
Nothing would fill Kings fans will more joy than to see their team return to Los Angeles in position to the series lead. But before they can do that, they have to split the series – and in order to do that, the Kings need a much stronger effort in Game 2.
We’ll see if the silver-and-black can even the series tonight at Scottrade.
Enjoy the game!