Waking up with the Kings: May 22 - LA Kings Insider

-The series is deadlocked again, and that’s not exactly a shocking, unexpected development. There wasn’t going to be one-sided triumph between a pair of teams that combined to go 36-6-6 at home and 16-26-6 on the road in the regular season. Of course, there’s also the trend of the Kings being able to eke out wins and remain close in games without playing their best hockey (my LAK.com feature later today will cover this), and last night’s game surely fit that script for much of its entirety. As badly as Los Angeles was outplayed in a dominant San Jose first period, it was a one-goal game after one, and they were still a play affected by a referee’s whistle away from vastly changing the game’s trajectory.

-So, about the whistle that negated Dustin Penner’s goal. While at the game, writers aren’t always privy to immediate multiple angles, additional replays and subsequent between-period analysis. From the press box, often we have to make our own judgments after only the initial replay. Having returned back home and having received a better view of the apparent goal that was whistled dead, I’m obviously amazed by the quick whistle. It didn’t appear that there was a referee in the proper position to be able to signal that play dead. That was a puck that was destined for the back of the net regardless of whether Penner jammed it in.

-The Penner goal was a moment of intense frustration for Kings fans, but the reason this series is tied once again is because the Kings are struggling to score goals at even strength. Even if Penner’s goal is counted, the Kings would have only three even strength goals in the last nine periods. The line of Dustin Brown, Anze Kopitar and Justin Williams has averaged one point per game through the playoffs after combining for 2.17 points per game during the regular season.

-Matt Greene appeared to be an asset on the blue line in his first playoff game of 2013. He ably battled San Jose’s size in front of Jonathan Quick and capably cleared lanes in front of the Kings’ crease. As long as his body is able to handle the battle of withstanding Joe Thornton’s and Brent Burns’ attempts at positioning through the remainder of the series, I don’t anticipate him leaving the lineup again. Perhaps it’s time to reunite the Martinez-Greene pairing from a season ago?

-I’ve been an enormous fan of the Kings’ Twitter feed and social media presence for the better part of the last year. It engages hockey fans, and while there’s a debate over whether it actually drives revenue and provides tangible marketing benefits for the team, it is an entirely welcome juxtaposition against the repetitive fan re-tweets, player appearance updates and generally unimaginative interaction that make many team accounts mostly cookie cutter versions of each other.

That’s why it was so disappointing to read Kevin Ryder using the team’s Twitter feed to equate a terrific shutdown play by Brad Stuart on Anze Kopitar with sexual assault. I wasn’t “offended” by what he wrote, I just thought it was inappropriate, juvenile dialogue coming from a team of a major professional sport, and in stark contrast to the mischievous wit that has come to define the team’s engaging online presence. When The Royal Half takes over the Kings’ Twitter feed, boundaries are stretched without being crossed through intelligent smack talking and sharp give-and-take. When a morning disc jockey makes light of sexual assault, it crudely cheapens the online discussion and rightfully offends many.

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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.