So far, so good on power-play look
It’s impossible to know that the future holds, but for at least one game, the Kings’ change in power-play personnel worked exactly the way they hoped it would. The Kings consolidated their power-play personnel, putting Drew Doughty and Jack Johnson together at the blue line with Anze Kopitar, Michal Handzus and Ryan Smyth up front. That quintet was on the ice for, essentially, four minutes out of the Kings’ five minutes of power-play time last night in Edmonton, and it was on the ice for both power-play goals, both of which were scored — officially, finally — by Doughty. The Kings had been 1-for-28 on the power play in their 10 previous games. Terry Murray said he plans to stay with the same power-play look when the Kings play Calgary on Saturday.
MURRAY: “Well, we had to change something up. That was important, to get a different look. Sometimes a change is a good thing, and that’s basically where that came from. We started talking about it a couple days before. You just need to look back at the fun they had together in the playoffs last year in Vancouver. It was a good look. They jumped right on it last night, and we started to get a shot mentality. Smytty was excellent at the net, and you get a good result out of those kinds of attitudes, so we’ll keep building on it.
“You always want to try to have two good groups. So, as a result of that, you’re going to spread it out a bit, and hopefully you come out for the second part of that power play with the same kind of intensity and some good result. But when things dry up, you have to put your best players together. Same thing on 5-on-5. You’ve got to trust that those guys are going to get you through a very difficult time. You’ve got to put the best six players you can on your top two lines, your best defensemen together, and play them a lot. They’re going to get you through. Now you can get back to what your philosophy might be, to spread it out a little so everybody can contribute. But I liked what happened last night. Obviously it was a turning point in the game, when we were able to come right back with a couple power-play goals.”