Waking up with the Kings: June 7 - LA Kings Insider

-Though the Los Angeles Kings’ 3-2 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks appeared to hinge on a sequence of plays late in the second period and early in the third, Los Angeles’ inability to take a two-goal lead weighed heavily in the defeat. Corey Crawford proved that it’s not always about how many saves you make, it’s when you make the saves, and his denial of chances on the shift that immediately followed Slava Voynov’s goal, the Kings’ power play that ensued, and his poke check on Justin Williams’ breakaway four minutes into the second period with Los Angeles leading 2-1 were pivotal moments in the game.

-This has been a series that has been decided by even strength scoring, and that’s not necessarily a good thing for the Kings. Los Angeles has averaged 1.4 even strength goals per game in the playoffs, a scoring output that has necessitated a razor-thin margin for error on the defense and in net. The two teams have combined for two power play goals in 26 chances, with the Kings’ power play tally with 1:02 remaining in Game 2 having virtually no bearing on the game or the series. A short-handed Los Angeles squad with Mike Richards – who led the team in scoring when he was concussed by Dave Bolland on an unpenalized hit late in Game 1 – watching from upstairs and multiple players attempting to play through pain is significantly challenged in attempting to keep pace with a healthy Chicago Blackhawks team that earned points in 41 of 48 games this season.

-This is also a Kings team that has generally responded well when pushed into postseason must-win situations. Dustin Brown has discussed Darryl Sutter’s strength in “getting that emotional level where it needs to be for individuals and the group,” and the coach responding to an inquiry on how the team will come out in an elimination game with “I think you can answer that yourself, couldn’t you?” is all kinds of Sutter-beautiful. It means little, but the Kings have won five of their last six Game 5s in which they trailed 3-1 in a playoff series, including a pair of 1-0 shutouts by Felix Potvin in the rarified air of the Pepsi Center in 2001 and 2002. Those games, coupled with Jonathan Quick’s 51-save performance in a 3-1 win at San Jose in Game 5 of the teams’ first round series in 2011 and Los Angeles’ injuries and five-on-five scoring woes indicate that Quick will need to produce one of his signature efforts of the 2012-13 season on Saturday. More than one goal allowed by the Kings’ 2013 playoff MVP may not be a strong enough performance to send the series back to Staples Center.

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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.