Monday, January 3, 2011
Kings: Smyth's late breakaway goal ties it, 2-2
By Dan Arritt
After the 2st period:
Kings 2, Chicago Blackhawks 2
The good: Just as the Blackhawks did in the opening period, the Kings stole back the momentum in the closing minutes of the second as Ryan Smyth scored on a breakaway to tie the score. Drew Doughty set up the play by poking the puck loose from a Chicago player. Justin Williams scooped it in and slid a perfect pass to Smyth, who was a good 20 meters in front of the closest defender. Smyth, the oldest player on the Kings at age 34, beat Chicago goalkeeper Corey Crawford for his fourth goal in the last four games.
The bad: After not allowing a power play in 12 straight home games to start the season, the Kings aren’t even killing penalties well anymore. The Blackhawks scored their second power-play goal of the game on their second man-advantage situation. Anze Kopitar, one of the best penalty killers for the Kings, went to the box for delay of game after shooting the puck over the glass and Chicago didn’t waste any time taking a 2-1 lead. Patrick Sharp took a cross-ice pass from Patrick Kane and blasted it past goalkeeper Jonathan Quick with 12:49 remaining in the period. After out-shooting the Blackhawks, 10-0, through the first 8 ˝ minutes, shot on goal are all even, 18-18. Second line center Jarret Stoll hasn’t taken a shot and he has three giveaways.
The in between:Dustin Brown, the leading goal scorer for the Kings, hasn’t taken a shot, but he does have five hits. The Kings have out-hit the Blackhawks, 23-18, overall, so we’ll see if that begins to take its toll.