Waking up with the Kings: May 11 - LA Kings Insider

-What other Los Angeles Kings home memory compares with Dustin Penner’s second period goal with 0.2 seconds remaining? There are obviously high points that capped off improbable comebacks – Daryl Evans’ overtime winner in the Miracle on Manchester, Bryan Smolinski’s game-tying goal and Eric Belanger’s game-winning goal in the Frenzy on Figueroa – but when else has there been one singular moment that caused such a turnabout of fortune, an immediate rise with such a profound impact? The above goals, which capitalized on a rising surge of momentum? Overtime goals by Anze Kopitar and Jeff Carter in New Jersey last spring? Adam Deadmarsh’s overtime goal to eliminate Detroit in 2001? Gary Shuchuk’s double-overtime goal in Vancouver in the second round in 1993? Nice company, Penns. All the pent-up nervous energy in the building exploded with Penner’s goal, which provided a major break at an important juncture in the series.

-One hallmark of the Darryl Sutter tenure is that Los Angeles continually finds ways to win against St. Louis. This is going to sound a touch too “sexy rah-rah” for someone such as Sutter, but it was why, from an I-want-to-work-deep-into-the-spring-and-not-have-to-write-player-evaluations-next-week-standpoint, I hoped that the Kings would meet the Blues in the first round, and not the Canucks or Sharks. My faith that Los Angeles would ultimately prevail in this series was shaken at times; it wavered in moments of Game 3 and the lead-up to Game 4. Other than Alex Pietrangelo’s late goal in Game 5, the pivotal moments late in the series favored the Kings. Anze Kopitar and Justin Williams erased a third period deficit in Game 4. Slava Voynov scored a fluky overtime goal in which Jaden Schwartz disrupted his shot on a backcheck in Game 5. Penner in Game 6. Whether it is described as cerebral strength, intestinal fortitude, or any other type of buzz-cliché, Los Angeles simply wins games against St. Louis and will advance from a playoff series in which it outplayed its opponent in six periods. Is this just a flighty way of saying the Kings have excellent goaltending? Perhaps. But in a head-to-head matchup between two similar teams described during the series as a pair of “rams” butting heads, the Kings have won 12 of the last 14 meetings.

-The Kings’ third and fourth lines were the team’s better lines on the ice for much of Game 6. In addition to the crashing, banging and forechecking associated with the Penner-Stoll-Lewis line – and Penner’s flair for the dramatic – Jordan Nolan stepped in seamlessly in place of Kyle Clifford, whose maintenance morning turned into a maintenance day. Nolan was winning his fair share of contested puck battles and allowed his line to see a healthy amount of offensive zone time. Tyler Toffoli has an awfully quick release and isn’t afraid to shoot from anywhere on the ice; he’s also not afraid to work along the boards or assert his burgeoning but still limited physicality in all three zones. He’s showing the signs of developing into a good forechecker at the NHL level and possessing a strong hockey acumen that allowed him to score three shorthanded goals in the AHL earlier in the year.

-Ducks or Sharks, Kings fans? Is anyone planning on taking in Game 7 at Honda Center as an impartial observer?

Rules for Blog Commenting
  • - No profanity, slurs or other offensive language. Replacing letters with symbols does not turn expletives into non-expletives.
  • - Personal attacks against other blog commenters, and/or blatant attempts to antagonize other commenters, are not tolerated. Respectful disagreement is encouraged. Posts that continually express the same singular opinion will be deleted.
  • - Comments that incite political, religious or similar debates will be deleted.
  • - Please do not discuss, or post links to, websites that illegally stream NHL games.
  • - Posting under multiple user names is not allowed. Do not type in all caps. All violations are subject to comment deletion and/or banning of commenters, per the discretion of the blog administrator.
Jake Muzzin

#6 | 6′ 3″ | 216 lb | Age: 27

Born: Feb 21, 1989
Birthplace: Woodstock, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Left


Muzzin was drafted in 2007 by the Pittsburgh Penguins, before signing to the Kings in 2010. He has since become the first Woodstock, Ontario professional athlete to win a major sports trophy.

Anze Kopitar

#11 | 6′ 3″ | 224 lb | Age: 29

Born: August 24, 1987
Birthplace: Jesenice, SVN
Position: C
Handedness: Left


As the 11th overall pick in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, Kopitar became the first Slovenian to play in the NHL. Kopitar has spent his entire NHL career with the Kings, and following the 2015–16 season, was named the Kings’ captain. Noted for both his offensive and defensive play, Kopitar was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the best defensive forward in the NHL in 2016.

Drew Doughty

#8 | 6′ 1″ | 195 lb | Age: 26

Born: December 8, 1989
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Right


Bio: Doughty is a Canadian defenceman who was selected second overall by the Kings in the 2008 Draft. Doughty made his NHL debut in 2008 as an 18-year-old and was named to the All-Rookie Team. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Kings, a two-time Olympic gold medallist with the Canadian national team, and a Norris Trophy finalist.

Tyler Toffoli

#73 | 6′ 1″ | 200 lb | Age: 24

Born: April 24, 1992
Birthplace: Scarborough, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right


Toffoli is a Canadian professional ice hockey forward, drafted by the Kings in the second round of the 2010 Draft. Toffoli scored his first career NHL goal in his second game in a 4–0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes in 2013. He was also named the 2012–13 AHL All-Rookie Team.

Jeff Carter

#77 | 6′ 4″ | 215 lb | Age: 31

Born: January 1, 1985
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right


Carter began his hockey career playing in the Ontario Hockey League in Canada before joining the AHL and playing for the Philadelphia Flyers. He was then traded to the Colombus Blue jackets before joining the LA Kings in 2012, where he has since won two Stanley Cups with the Kings.

Jonathan Quick

#32 | 6′ 1″ | 218 lb | Age: 30

Born: January 21, 1986
Birthplace: Milford, CT, USA
Position: G
Handedness: Left


Bio: Quick is the current goaltender for the LA Kings and was selected by Los Angeles at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. Previously, Quick was a silver medalist with USA at the 2010 Winter Olympics. He’s won two Stanley Cup championships with the Kings, along with being the most recent goaltender to be awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs.