The View from Phoenix - LA Kings Insider


Sarah McLellan: Coyotes earn needed win over Kings

It was the second straight game the Coyotes had a two-goal lead evaporate and fourth time in their last nine games it happened. But like they did Saturday against the Calgary Flames, the Coyotes rebounded.

This time, Halpern was the savior. He scored with 3:05 remaining on a shot from the faceoff circle that needed video review to determine it would count.

Earlier in the period, defenseman Keith Yandle tallied the tying goal after the Coyotes fell behind to the Kings, who scored three consecutive goals.

Sarah McLellan: Coyotes’ Dave Tippett wants to start Mike Smith rest of season

“He was a little down this morning, so (we kept) him off the ice,” Tippett said. “Hopefully that gives him a spark.”

But Smith was indeed back between the pipes for his ninth consecutive start. Even before taking on the Kings, Smith ranked first in the league in games (58), starts (57), shots-against (1,755), saves (1,605) and time-on-ice (3,379:37).

Tippett has made it clear he intends to rely on Smith the rest of the way, but “he’s gotta be physically ready to ride,” he said.


Craig Morgan: Halpern’s late goal lifts Coyotes over Kings

With center Martin Hanzal providing a spark on his return from a lower-body injury and Smith standing tall once again, Phoenix reversed that trend and carried the play early in the third period to get momentum back in its favor.

Hanzal did the dirty work down low before the puck squirted back to Yandle for a low slapshot that slipped past Quick’s glove. Halpern’s game-winner came from a tough angle, slipping over the goal line before Quick pulled it out, stymied Shane Doan on a rebound then waited for the review to seal L.A.’s third straight loss.


Christopher Hair: Phoenix Coyotes at Los Angeles Kings Recap: 21-1

As time ticked down past the four minute mark, the puck ended up on Jeff Halpern’s stick with an open net. He got the shot off and Quick appeared to make an acrobatic save that left a rebound in front of the crease. Doan pounced on it and was absolutely robbed by Quick as he swung his stick behind his head. After a whistle moments later, the play was reviewed and the replay showed that Halpern’s initial shot indeed crossed the goal line before Quick got to it, giving the Coyotes a good goal with 3:05 left in the third. Mike Smith made four save in the final minutes and Zbynek Michalek blocked two shots and the Coyotes closed the door on a 4-3 victory, handing the Kings their first defeat on the season when leading after two periods.


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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.