March 24, 2011 12:45 pm

Strength vs. strength in special-teams battle

The Kings’ recent penalty-kill success will certainly be put to the test tonight. The Kings have not allowed a power-play goal in 10 consecutive games, but tonight they face a San Jose Sharks team that ranks third in the NHL in power-play efficiency and has been even better than that of late. The Sharks have scored at least one power-play goal in eight consecutive games. They are 3-for-4 on the power play in their last two games and 7-for-19 in their last six games, an astounding success rate of 36.8 percent. It’s no stretch to say that special teams could make the difference tonight, and after today’s skate, Terry Murray talked about the Sharks’ power play…

MURRAY: “Best in the league, probably. In the last few games, it’s clicking along really good. We always talk about (playing with discipline). It’s important to play hard between the whistles, but once the whistle blows, you’ve got to make sure you’re showing composure and not bringing the referee into the game. You’ve got to be smart about that, at this time of the year. There’s too much at stake. But you never want to pull back when the game is being played. You play hard, play smart. We want to get away from the hooking and the reaching in, the slashing penalties. Those are hard ones to kill, if there are too many of them. That’s simply moving your feet, keeping your tempo high. By doing that, that will keep the referee out of the game. It’s going to be a hard game, but the composure is really important. You’ve got to take a facewash once in a while out there.”

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