Monday, March 21, 2011
Kings: More of nothing in the second period
By Dan Arritt
After the 2nd period:
Kings 0, Calgary Flames 0
The good: If you like watching teams kill power plays, then you’d like this game because those are basically the highlights so far. The question is, are these good penalty-kill units, or just real bad power-play teams? The Kings killed two power plays in the period to run their streak to 33 straight. Kings goalie Jonathan Quick has 14 saves, including a big one that bailed out defenseman Matt Greene, who slipped near his blue line while readying to play the puck, allowing a breakaway attempt by Lance Bouma with 4:59 remaining. Anze Kopitar has won nine of 10 face offs and Jarret Stoll eight of 10, leading to a 26-11 advantage on the drop. Calgary has a 21-20 edge on hits, but Dustin Brown has the rub of the night, taking down two Flames with one check late in the period.
The bad: The Kings power-unit has not only grown unproductive, it’s just plain unimaginative. The Kings were 0-for-3 that period but have 1:23 left on another after a retaliatory interference penalty on Cory Sarich. Brown had knocked Sarich down behind the net just after he passed the puck and Sarich returned the favor, only Brown didn’t have the puck. Alexei Ponikarovsky has committed two penalties with his stick thus far and the Kings have 15 giveaways, compared to six for the Flames. Jack Johnson, Willie Mitchell and Justin Williams are the main offenders with three each. The Kings have one goal in their last eight-plus periods—all at Staples Center, and six goals in their last 17-plus periods at home.
The in between: Good thing the Kings hired people to throw t-shirts into the stands during breaks in play because there isn’t much to get excited about so far. One fan yelled, ‘Boring’ and everybody in Staples Center probably heard because it was so quiet at the time. The Kings are playing like they're trying to complete their first marathon. They see the finish line but their legs are getting mighty wobbly. Did we say this would be a one-goal game?