EL SEGUNDO--A week after being relegated to back-up duty for two consecutive games, Jonathan Quick is back in a familiar role. Winning games as the clear-cut No. 1 goalie for the Kings.
Quick stopped 34 shots in a 2-0 victory Monday night against the visiting Bruins, his fifth shutout of the season and 13th of his career.
"I thought he was really good last night," said Kings coach Terry Murray. "I like Boston’s team. They come hard, their back end is up on the attack all the time...they’ll take it to the net and it required the goaltender to be very sharp last night."
Quick, who will start his fifth consecutive game Wednesday against visiting San Jose, said he didn’t have any extra incentive playing against All-Star goalie Tim Thomas of the Bruins, or a team he followed closely while growing up in Milford, Conn.
He just knows the Kings are desperate for wins.
"If you start bringing an outside incentive into the game, it all messes with you a little bit," he said. "I just try to take it for what it’s worth, two points."
Like most of the Kings, Quick’s numbers took a dip during the team's most recent slide, when they lost 10 of 12 games from Dec. 29 to Jan. 20. Quick made eight starts in that span, losing seven and posting a 3.125 goal-against average.
After a 3-1 loss at home to St. Louis on Jan. 13, season-long back-up Jonathan Bernier started in goal two nights later and the Kings won, 5-2. Murray decided to ride Bernier's success two days later in Dallas, but the Kings lost, 2-1.
Quick was back in goal in St. Louis last Tuesday, allowing the winning goal to trickle through his pads late in the third period. Instead of going back to Bernier, however, Murray stuck with his No. 1 goalie. Quick lost his next start, 2-0, against Phoenix, but has bounced back with two consecutive victories for the first time in a month.
"You think of a lot of different things when you’re going through a difficult time," Murray said. "It ended up that my decision was to go with our No. 1 goaltender and just let him get his game on track and rely on our best players to find a way to get the wins. It’s starting to fall in place right now.’‘
After the nightmarish end to the game in St. Louis last week, Quick said he appreciates the opportunity to get his game untracked where he feels most comfortable, as the team's No. 1 goalie.
"I was glad he came back with me against Phoenix," Quick said. "I always feel like I have something to prove after letting up something like that, or giving a game away like that."
With a 10-game road trip looming next month, Quick was asked which stop he was looking forward to most.
"I’m looking forward to San Jose tomorrow night," he said. "I’m not looking any further than that."