Los Angeles Hockey: Davis Drewiski

Kings suffer another painful loss, 5-3

November, 18, 2010

LOS ANGELES -- The Kings couldn’t put a Band-Aid on this one.

With injuries mounting and more inexperienced players filling the voids, the Kings suffered another letdown Wednesday night against the Columbus Blue Jackets, blowing a third-period lead and losing their second consecutive game, 5-3, at Staples Center.

“A couple of those goals looked pretty easy for them, and that’s really out of character,” said Kings coach Terry Murray. “When we have a one-goal lead in the third period like that, that’s something we’ve been able to shut down and do the right thing the rest of the game to maintain that lead and win the game.”

With defenseman Willie Mitchell and defense-minded forward Alexei Ponikarovsky out because of injuries since Nov. 6, and left wing Scott Parse set to undergo hip surgery next week, the Kings have had to rely on players that would be better served honing their skills at the American Hockey League level.

Jake Muzzin was called up after Mitchell went on injured reserve because of a fractured wrist and Murray singled out him and defensive partner Davis Drewiske for their poor play against the Blue Jackets.

"They need to be better," Murray said.

It was Drewiske who was burned on the goal by Rick Nash that broke a 3-3 tie with 3 minutes 12 seconds remaining. Nash then added an empty-netter in the final minute for the two-goal cushion.

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Kings: Anze Kopitar scores twice for 2-1 lead

November, 13, 2010
After the 1st period: Kings 2, New York Islanders 1

The good: Not sure if the Kings PR department keeps this stat, but Anze Kopitar probably just scored the two quickest goals of his five-year career, helping the Kings to a 2-0 lead after just five minutes. Kopitar scored on the Kings’ first shot on goal just 1 minute 23 seconds into the game. Davis Drewiske sent a slap shot from just inside the blue line and it took a fortuitous bounce off the skate of Dustin Brown and skidded directly to Kopitar, who slapped into the net from the right slot. It’s the sixth consecutive game the Kings have scored first, and they are 8-0-0 this season when scoring the game’s first goal. Kopitar’s second goal also came on a rebound, this time it was Drew Doughty sending a blast at New York goalie Dwayne Roloson. He deflected the puck to his right and slightly behind him, where Kopitar was in position to shove it in the net. Kopitar now has 15 points in the last 14 games. For the record, his only other hat trick in NHL was Oct. 22, 2009 against Dallas.

The bad: The Kings could have taken the wind completely out of the Islanders' sails with one more goal, but New York answered with the first goal of the season by Rob Schremp. The goal was set up when James Wisniewski sent a shot at Kings goalie Jonathan Quick. Kings defenseman Jake Muzzin appeared to inadvertently screen Quick and the puck rebounded out to Schremp, who beat Quick on the glove side from the bottom of the right face-off circle.

The in between: After a hard-hitting, high-energy game Thursday against the visiting Dallas Stars, this one definitely lacks the intensity so far. Kind of similar to last Saturday’s game against Nashville, which also came two days after a bruising victory against Tampa Bay. Oh well, the Kings would probably just as soon win this one without bruising their knuckles. After all, they have another division game Monday at San Jose.

Kings: Stoll returns, things get chippier

November, 11, 2010
After the 2nd period: Kings 1, Dallas Stars 1

The good: A big ‘Whew’ came over the Staples Center crowd when Kings second-line center Jarret Stoll came out for the second period and soon jumped over the boards for his first shift since getting bushwhacked by Dallas left winger James Neal with about a minute left in the first period. Also, it was erroneously reported after the first period that Kings defenseman Matt Greene received a 10-minute game misconduct for jumping Neal after the collision, but it was just a 10-minute misconduct, enabling him to return to the game with about four minutes left in the second period. The highlight of the period, no doubt, was Kings rookie enforcer-to-be Kyle Clifford getting the best of Dallas forward Brandon Segal in a fight, knocking him on his back with a right hand and then getting in a couple more rights before the referees could separate them. The brawl erupted just after a face-off in the Kings’ offensive zone. Clifford had sprayed Dallas goalie Kari Lehtonen with ice after he held onto the puck, causing the stoppage in play and likely leading to the brawl. Things continued to get chippy later in the period. More on that below.

The bad: The Kings had a goal disallowed in the final minutes on what looked like a questionable goalie interference call on Justin Williams. Ryan Smyth forced a turnover and brought the puck into the Dallas defensive zone, then passed back to a trailing Stoll, who beat Lehtonen with a hard slap shot from just above the right face-off circle. Williams was skating backward just in front of the crease when Stoll let go of the shot, and Williams tripped over Lehtonen’s skate just as the puck whizzed into the net, leading the referees to call the interference penalty.

The in between: After the disallowed goal, the Kings began taking their frustrations out on the Stars, throwing rapid-fire checks at any Dallas player who touched the puck. That led to Kings winger Dustin Brown taking a hard lick from a Dallas player. Kings defenseman Davis Drewiske and Dallas left wing Steve Ott then dropped their gloves and fought to a stalemate. The one stat that’s not going in the Kings’ favor is shots on goal. They have been out-shot, 20-15 thus far.