Monarchs open Eastern Conference Final with a 3-2 win - LA Kings Insider

The Manchester Monarchs used second period goals by Nic Dowd and Michael Mersch to break a 1-1 tie in a 3-2 win over the Hartford Wolfpack (New York Rangers) Thursday night at Verizon Wireless Arena. Mersch’s second goal stood up as the game-winner as Mat Bodie scored with 13:17 remaining for Hartford to provide tension deep into the third period. J.F. Berube, who stopped 24-of-26 shots, was very good in the win, though Bodie’s perimeter shot (which may have been deflected upon release) snuck up on him on the short side to turn the game into a one-goal affair.

I’ll have quotes and some photos tomorrow morning. Until then, a few notes:

-Thank goodness I no longer have to type Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. Also, Paul Bissonnette re-entered the lineup, replacing Ryan Horvat. He skated alongside Andrew Crescenzi and Zach O’Brien.

-Manchester had two very strong kills in the first period to keep the game 1-1. Though Mersch scored a grease-covered goal 35 seconds into the game, Hartford had periods of strong pressure in the first, and individual efforts by Nic Dowd and Nick Shore while shorthanded disrupted zone time and detracted from what little rhythm had been established on the Wolfpack man advantage.

-The Monarchs took a 2-1 lead on a nice play by Nic Dowd, who took advantage of a turnover and beat everyone down the ice – including both the Hartford defender and his teammates – and turned a 4-on-1 to what in essence was a breakaway. Showing a terrific flash of speed in quickly covering a wide swath of open ice down the left wing, Dowd snapped a quickly released shot over Yann Danis’ glove to give Manchester the lead it would not relinquish. Five minutes later, after having sustained heavy pressure, Mersch, from his knees, backhanded a loose puck off a knocked-down Kevin Gravel shot into an open net for the game-winner.

From AHL.com:
nPOtCKiBbLYb4KtzE5E72rFZ9QwTiWYEYvmrxQD3bu4

Eastern Conference Final schedule:
1 MANCHESTER 3 vs Hartford 2
2 Saturday, May 23 / 4:00 p.m. vs Hartford
3 Tuesday, May 26 / 4:00 p.m. at Hartford
4 Wednesday, May 27 / 4:00 p.m. at Hartford
5 Saturday, May 30 / 4:00 p.m. vs Hartford*
6 Sunday, May 31 / 4:05 p.m. at Hartford*
7 Tuesday, May 2 / 4:05 p.m. vs Hartford*
-*if necessary; all times PT

Western Conference Final schedule:
1 Sunday, May 24 / 4:00 p.m. Grand Rapids (DET) at Utica (VAN)
2 Monday May 25 / 4:00 p.m. Grand Rapids at Utica
3 Thursday, May 28 / 4:00 p.m. Utica at Grand Rapids
4 Friday, May 29 / 4:00 p.m. Utica at Grand Rapids
5 Sunday, May 31 2:00 p.m. Utica at Grand Rapids
6 Tuesday, June 2 / 4:00 p.m. Grand Rapids at Utica
7 Wednesday, June 3 4:00 p.m. Grand Rapids at Utica

Lines:

Mersch – Weal – O’Neill
Kempe – Shore – Auger/Backman
Van der Gulik – Dowd – Auger/Backman
Bissonnette – Crescenzi – O’Brien

Bodnarchuk – LoVerde
Forbort – Gravel
Schultz – Miller

Berube
Bartosak

A little Barto to brighten your day.

A photo posted by Manchester Monarchs (@monarchshockey) on

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

Bio

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.
VIEW JAKE MUZZIN POSTS

Anze Kopitar

#11 | 6′ 3″ | 224 lb | Age: 29

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

Bio

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.

VIEW ANZE KOPITAR POSTS
Drew Doughty

#8 | 6′ 1″ | 195 lb | Age: 26

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

Bio

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.

VIEW DREW DOUGHTY POSTS
Tyler Toffoli

#73 | 6′ 1″ | 200 lb | Age: 24

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

Bio

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.
VIEW TYLER TOFFOLI POSTS

Jeff Carter

#77 | 6′ 4″ | 215 lb | Age: 31

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

Bio

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.

VIEW JEFF CARTER POSTS
Jonathan Quick

#32 | 6′ 1″ | 218 lb | Age: 30

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

Bio

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.

VIEW JONATHAN QUICK POSTS