Kings Win Rookie Game 2 – Split With Coyotes


The Los Angeles Kings Prospects defeated the Arizona Coyotes 3-1 Wednesday afternoon.

The game was streamed by with no sound or replay, just the live feed.  The feed could be found on  The Kings Live Game Blog recorded play-by-play action for a complete game recap; including warm-up photos, videos, tweets, and listed expected lines.

The Kings struck first in the first period with a goal by 18-year-old winger Spencer Watson.  The goal came off a two-on-one odd-man rush.  Watson shot the puck top shelf past Coyotes goaltender Brendan Burke, who is the son of the current Coyotes goalie coach and former Kings goaltender Sean Burke.

Arizona answered a few minutes later with a goal by forward Brendan Perlini, who finished a Coyotes two-on-one to tie the game 1-1.

Early in the second period Kings prospect Valentin Zykov, took a two-minute penalty.  The Kings killed the penalty and as Zykov left the box he joined the play and buried a rebound to give the Kings a 2-1 lead.

About a minute later Kings forward Vincent Arseneau dropped the gloves with Coyotes forward Yan-Pavel Laplante.  Both players got a few good licks in and the fight went on for a couple minutes.

Halfway through the period the Kings switch goaltenders, taking Patrik Bartosak out and putting in 24-year-old Tony Capobianco who is attending Kings camp on a tryout basis.  Capobianco played four years for the Canisius College Golden Griffins at the NCAA Division I level.  Last season he alternated between the East Coast Hockey League’s Elmira Jackals and the American Hockey League’s Adirondack Phantoms.

Before the end of the period Kings defensemen Kurtis MacDermid dropped the gloves with Coyotes forward Dyson Stevenson.  MacDermid did well getting the better of Stevenson with a few more punches.  This was Stevenson’s second fight in two games.

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  • The third period showed players fatigue on both sides.  Play was sloppy, consisting of a lot of running around out of position.  The Coyotes took two penalties, and the Kings powerplay looked good.  Especially the line of Nick Shore, Scott Sabourin, and Michael Mersch.  Shore and Sabourin played with the Kings AHL farm team the Manchester Monarchs last season.  Mersch joined the Monarchs for seven games after finishing his NCAA Division I career with the Wisconsin Badgers.  Shore, Sabourin, and Mersch were able to cycle the puck down low in the zone as well as working it out to their defensemen at the points.  They did a great job of retrieving rebounds and keeping the puck in the zone to optimize the powerplay.

    Capobianco made a clutch rolling save with 9:55 left in the third to keep the score at 2-1.

    With a minute and a half left, Mersch scored an empty-net goal for the Kings.

    At the end of the game Kings defenseman Kevin Raine got into a minor scrape with Coyotes forward Andrew Mangiapane.  It was more of an after the whistle, wrestling match, due to a hit that occurred split seconds after the buzzer.

    Overall play in game 2 of the rookie series was much sloppier. It’s to be expected, with such dramatic roster changes: the Kings played six different defensemen from yesterday’s lineup.  The Kings struggled to get the puck out of the zone.  Turnovers at their own blueline were apparent and frequent.  It was more noticeable during the third period, when the players began to tire, and as the coyotes started to play with more desperation.  On the positive side, the young Kings were very physical, especially along the boards in their own zone. Hits thrown were intelligible and purposeful, to help separate opponents from the puck, giving a Kings teammate time to move the puck out of the zone.

    Sep 15, 2013; Glendale, AZ, USA; Phoenix Coyotes center Martin Hanzal (11) wins a face off against Los Angeles Kings center Andy Andreoff (64) during the second period at Arena. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

    The line of Justin Auger, Nic Dowd, Zykov was impressive again.  The trio generated numerous chances and were dominant cycling the puck in the Coyotes zone.  Zykov is going to be a player.  Zykov picked up a goal, and had another great opportunity on a near breakaway thirty-seconds into the game.  In both games Zykov made his presence known with numerous chances.  It’s good to see the kid keeps coming back, and persevered with a goal this afternoon.

    The Kings had it together offensively, but the question again, is can these young guns tidy it up on defense?