Monday, January 10, 2011
Kings: Simmonds give L.A. a 1-0 lead
By Dan Arritt
After the 1st period:
Kings 1, Toronto Maple Leafs 0
The good: It’s Game 6 of the eight-game home stand and the Kings have scored first in five of them. In fact, they’ve out-shot their opponents in the first period of all six. Wayne Simmonds did the honors this time, pulling off one his better offensive move of the season. The scoring play began when Jarret Stoll won a face-off in his offensive zone. The puck came back to defenseman Rob Scuderi who banked a pass off the boards to Simmonds. Using his body to protect the puck from Dion Phaneuf, Simmonds worked his way down the goal line, cut across the crease and slipped the puck into the far side of the net, catching 22-year-old rookie goalie James Reimer out of position. Reimer knows he’ll be sent back to the AHL as soon as former Ducks goalie J.S. Giguere returns from a groin injury, so he’s playing with a nothing-to-lose attitude and it showed on that play.
The bad: The Kings had two power plays in the opening period, but managed just one shot on goal so far. They’ll have 11 seconds remaining on the second, but that’s not a lot of time to get anything done. The Maple Leafs are attacking the point man and not allowing him to set up for a slap shot, so the Kings might want to think about drawing up some new plays.
The in between: The Maple Leafs managed just five shots on goal, but three came on excellent scoring chances that were only kept out of the net because Kings goalie Jonathan Quick made great stops. Toronto is bringing the wood against the Kings, wracking up 17 hits to the Kings’ 12.