December 30 postgame quotes: John Stevens - LA Kings Insider

On whether the win was representative of what he looks for in a team-wide performance:
Well, there’s lots of good things tonight. I thought we had a really good first period, and the second period got a little off-track. They’re a pretty good team in transition, but we certainly got some big contributions. Probably the biggest thing for me tonight, conversations have been had about not scoring the first goal. There are so many statistics out there that can affect the outcome of a hockey game, but I think this group has done a really good job of not letting an instance of a game dictate the outcome of a game, so they understand that’s one play in a game, and they know there’s 60 minutes in the game and they think there’s enough time to make a difference. I think that was certainly indicative tonight of giving up a shorty to start the period and then bouncing back with a quick goal and then ultimately getting another one. It’s good to see, but it’s a journey we’re on to try and get better, for sure.

On the team’s success in transition and finding open ice:
I didn’t quite see it the same way. I thought it was a little tougher to get through the neutral zone. You know what I am seeing in neutral right now? Teams are really pulling back in the neutral zone. They don’t want to give you the rush game, they’re trying to get pucks turned over before they get in your zone, and then they can really transition the puck. I think at times we were really good there. When get their attack going, their D are very involved, and I think when you defend that well, it opens up space going the other way. It just seems to me right now the neutral zone is getting tighter and tighter, and teams are putting a lot more value in it, so I think the ability to get through it is going to be even more important as we move along.

On whether he was surprised to see Drew Doughty respond well after Nikolay Goldobin’s goal:
Not at all. It’s not very often you see that. It’s a great move. Credit to the kid. Drew has that ability. It’s ironic – we were talking about him today about how he has the ability to just fluff things off. He turned the puck over in Game 1 in the Finals in ’14. Tried to toe-drag a guy at the blue line, we went down 1-0. It wasn’t too long later he took the puck like he did tonight and skated through everybody and scored and got the game tied. Great players have a short memory, It’s not very often that happens, so I wouldn’t expect to see that again for a while.

On generating scoring chances, especially from Marian Gaborik and Tyler Toffoli:
I thought that line was good tonight. I thought they really skated. I thought they played responsible. I think when they play a 200-foot game, they really get back and get on top of pucks. They end up with the puck more. But the elements on that line, you’ve got a guy in the middle who can really skate and sees the ice. You’ve got Tyler, who’s got a great ability to find space and get open and make plays, and you’ve got Gabby, who really reads off the puck and gets to open space and still has got high-end speed, and I think he shoots the puck better than he’s given credit for. The elements on that line work really well together. I think there’s a little chemistry there, and I think they had a good night.

-Lead photo via Jeff Vinnick/NHLI

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Adrian Kempe

#9 | 6′ 2″ | 195 lb | Age: 21

Born: September 13, 1996
Birthplace: Kramfors, SWE
Position: LW
Handedness: Left


Kempe was selected by the Kings in the first round (29th overall) in the 2014 NHL Draft.

Alex Iafallo

#19 | 6′ | 185 lb | Age: 23

Born: December 21, 1993
Birthplace: Eden, NY, USA
Position: C
Handedness: Left


Iafallo was signed by the Kings as an unrestricted free agent on April 18, 2017.

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.

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.