Waking up with the Kings: May 17 - LA Kings Insider

-When a team wins 12 consecutive late regular season and playoff games at home, there are going to be episodes of the dramatic, and on Thursday night at Staples Center, 10 days after Anze Kopitar and Justin Williams’ third period go-ahead goals in Game 4 of the first round and six days after Dustin Penner’s “McFlurry Miracle”, Dustin Brown and Trevor Lewis scored in a span of 22 seconds to practically reach a zenith of spectacular, bedlam-inducing moments at Staples Center. Arena staff would be wise to check for cracks and potholes in the seating area from thousands of fans literally leaping up and down at their seats in unison to celebrate a moment that isn’t quite as profound as the Miracle on Manchester or the Frenzy on Figueroa, but a significant franchise event that will carry its own historical weight. After the game, I rode an elevator down to the event level with the Black Aces. In what was more than a stunned silence, I actually heard one or two of them let out an astounded grunt as they peered out the elevator’s window towards throngs of buzzed, delirium-induced fans streaming out of the arena, screaming “Go Kings Go” in unison. Way to leave an impression.

-There have been stretches in the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs where the Kings have been outplayed but managed to find ways to win. Game 2 leans towards that description. It is concerning that a team that allowed the third-fewest shots in the National Hockey League during the regular season has now allowed 66 shots through the first two games against San Jose. Dustin Brown and Trevor Lewis spoke last night about not having played a complete 60 minutes yet, with Brown adding that his line needs to start “figuring it out.” The Kings will need the top line to take Brown’s heed amidst the hostile HP Pavilion surroundings for Game 3, where the Sharks will be facing a pivotal moment in their 2012-13 season backed by the roar of one of the National Hockey League’s loudest amphitheaters. It seems realistic to imagine that Jonathan Quick will face another 30 shots on Saturday, and if he can continue to make saves like the one below, the Kings will be well-backed to build on the momentum supplemented by Thursday night’s win.

-San Jose recorded four shots on goal during the game’s opening shift and required Jonathan Quick to find his rhythm early. In the other direction, Jeff Carter quickly released a beautiful, far-post shot that beat Antti Niemi off the rush on Los Angeles’ first attempt on goal of the game. Carter’s shot was terrific – really, who else in the league can fire off such a shot at top speed? – but during a game in which San Jose previously admitted a heightened need to win, that’s a shot Niemi’s teammates are counting on him to stop.

-Tyler Toffoli tied for a game-high five shots on goal, showed excellent possession instincts, demonstrated a cool poise while on the power play and kept his actions simple without forcing unnecessary actions. He drew the penalty on Brad Stuart that led to the first half of the late third period power play before cashing in with an assist by beating Stuart wide, and snapping a quick, low shot that rebounded directly onto the stick of Trevor Lewis for the game-winner. His third period was the best 20 minutes he has played as a King.

-Jarret Stoll’s absence was felt inside the circle against one of the league’s traditionally excellent faceoff teams as the Kings won only 32% of their draws. Mike Richards inherited a slightly larger role in faceoffs and won 6-of-19. This will continue to be a concern on the road for Games 3 and 4. Players found success on the penalty kill in Stoll’s absence, with Kopitar-Brown, Richards-Carter, Richardson-Lewis and Fraser-Williams seeing adjusted minutes as part of a perfect penalty kill – though Patrick Marleau did score on a re-direct five seconds after the conclusion of a San Jose power play.

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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.