The Kings came away from Game 1 slightly happier than the New Jersey Devils because of the final score, but only slightly happier. The Kings had a good start in Game 1, but as the game got into the third period, the Devils started to take control because of some physical play and improved forechecking. Anze Kopitar’s overtime goal — and some strong play by Jonathan Quick — allowed the Kings to come away with the victory and the series lead, but the prevailing thought among the Kings, over the last two days, is that a duplicate effort will put them in high danger tonight. Jeff Carter and Drew Doughty talked about the need for an improved effort.
CARTER: “It’s a huge game for both teams. We expect them to come out with their best effort. In front of their home crowd, they’re going to come out hard, and we’re going to have to be ready, right from the drop of the puck. … I think both teams have talked about Game 1 not being one of their best games. There’s a lot of areas that we’ve talked about and tried to clean up the last couple days, with practice and video. I think, overall, the game was a little sloppy. The puck was bouncing everywhere and things just seemed a little off, so I’m sure that will all be sharpened up tonight.’’
DOUGHTY: “I think both teams are going to be a lot better tonight. We felt like we didn’t have our best effort. Our legs weren’t there. We weren’t making the plays that we could. Darryl was harping on us that we’ve got to be a lot better. We know that they’re going to come out, especially in that first 10 minutes, and they’re going to be all over us. They’re going to be finishing their checks. They’re going to be hard on the forecheck and it’s going to be a tough game, but I definitely expect both teams to be at their best tonight, so we’ve got to make sure that every single guy in that room is prepared to play and prepared to battle.’’