The Kings are doing a lot of things well these days, but if there’s one thing that they’re consistently having to overcome, it’s slow starts. The Kings are plus-11 in the second period, in terms of goals for and against, as opposed to plus-1 in the first period, but it’s not so much about the goals. In the first period Monday night, the Kings scored first, and were tied 1-1 at the end of the first period, but they had clearly been outplayed and allowed the Ducks to establish momentum, something that came back to haunt the Kings in the second period, when the Ducks took a 3-1 lead.
At this point, it’s been discussed, discussed and discussed. Today, I asked Dustin Brown whether — other than simply bringing continued attention to the issue — there was anything that players or coaches could do. Anything in preparation? Strategy?
BROWN: “Bringing attention to it is obviously the key. I think it’s the responsibility of the players, even for the first 10 minutes of the game, just buying in. Maybe we’re over-compensating if there’s such a thing. If there’s a play to be made, sometimes just chipping it in and grinding it out, and getting in that mindset early on. Obviously you want to make plays when they’re there, but maybe in the first 10 minutes, to get us that good start and make it tough on them, everything has to get deep. That’s something that’s put on the forwards. From the forwards’ standpoint, it’s a matter of making smart, hard decisions through the middle of the ice.”