Los Angeles Hockey: Detroit Red Wings

Last-second goal lifts Red Wings over Kings

February, 10, 2013

DETROIT -- Jonathan Ericsson scored with 5 seconds left to lift the Detroit Red Wings to a 3-2 win over the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday.

For the full story, click this link.

Kings: Win over Red Wings is doubly important

March, 13, 2012

LOS ANGELES -- Must-win accomplished.

The Kings entered their game Tuesday night against the visiting Red Wings with nothing more than two points on their minds. Then they put their thoughts to action, scoring a short-handed goal, one on the power play, two at even strength and an empty netter for good measure, lifting them to a 5-2 victory at Staples Center.

With the win, the Kings jumped one spot ahead in the Western Conference standings to 10th. Better yet, with 12 games remaining, the Kings moved into a four-way points-tie with eighth-place San Jose, ninth-place Colorado and 11th-place Calgary.

“We just have to worry about ourselves,” said defenseman Drew Doughty, who had a goal, an assist and a plus-3 rating. “All that we can control is the games that we are winning and, hopefully, some other teams lose some for us.”

Along the mental lines, the Kings also needed to put to rest their devastating loss Friday in Detroit, when they let a one-goal lead slip away in the final five minutes and lost in regulation, 4-3. They did that by seizing control early. Justin Williams nudged a loose puck past the goal line just under seven minutes into the game, and Anze Kopitar scored a timely short-handed goal with 6:45 left in the opening period.

After blowing eight-one goal leads in the previous four games, including three in the loss in Detroit, the Kings didn’t flinch when the Red Wings pulled to within a goal early in the second period. Instead they took back the two-goal advantage on Doughty’s ninth of the season, a slap shot that deflected off Detroit defenseman Ian White and into the net with 9:03 left in the second period. The goal was originally awarded to Mike Richards, which would have ended a 25-game goal-scoring drought, but later given to Doughty.

“The key to this game was weathering their storm in the second,” said Dustin Brown, who had two assists to stretch his point streak to nine games, matching his career high. “They had some good pressure on us, and some good chances, but we found a way to play even through the second period and that’s huge against a team like that.”

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Kings: Kings extend lead to 3-1 on goal by Mike Richards

March, 13, 2012
After the 2nd period:

Kings 3, Detroit Red Wings 1

The good: One of the most bizarre scoring droughts in the NHL this season came to an end midway through the middle period, at least for now anyway. Kings center Mike Richards was given initial credit for deflecting a shot from Drew Doughty and into the net for his first goal in 25 games and only his second since Christmas. The play was reviewed to determine if Richards used a high stick to deflect the puck, but there wasn’t enough visible evidence to overturn the call. The play started when Jeff Carter carried the puck out from behind the net and passed to Doughty just inside the blue line and directly in front of the Detroit goal. Doughty let go of a slap shot and it appeared to get a piece of Richards as he battled for position with Detroit defenseman Ian White. Richards appeared to be trying to dodge the puck and it might have only hit White, which would give Doughty the goal. Either way, Richards will take it. Doughty also received his second assist of the game, bumping he and defense partner Rob Scuderi up to a plus-3 for the game. The Kings are also winning the physical edge, out-hitting the Red Wings, 38-11. Dustin Brown leads the way with seven hits.

The bad: The Red Wings started to build momentum after falling behind by two goals in the opening period and that seemed to carry over into the second period as they dominated the first five minutes. They cut the deficit in half after Justin Williams delivered a weak effort along the boards and Detroit recovered the puck. Henrik Zetterberg took a shot, but it deflected into the slot where Jiri Hudler was waiting to shoot it past Kings goalie Jonathan Quick. The Zetterberg line destroyed the Kings in their 4-3 loss in Detroit on Friday, combining for three goals, and it appears they’ll be a tough matchup the rest of the night. The Kings had seven more giveaways in the second period, giving them 17 for the game. Willie Mitchell has been the biggest offender, committing three giveaways through the first 40 minutes.

The in between: Two of the teams the Kings still need to leapfrog in the Western Conference standings, the Flames and Sharks, played another three-point game tonight, with Calgary winning in overtime, 3-2. It was the Sharks who moved back into eighth place with the extra point, however. The Kings need to win this game to have the same points as the Flames, Sharks and Avalanche.

Kings: Williams and Kopitar score for 2-0 lead

March, 13, 2012
After the 1st period:

Kings 2, Detroit Red Wings 0

The good: Looking determined to a avoid a four-game sweep against the Red Wings this season, the Kings came out red hot in the opening period and received an even-strength goal from Justin Williams and a short-hander from Anze Kopitar. The Kings had two excellent scoring chances in the first six minutes, one by Jarret Stoll and the other Jeff Carter, but Detroit goalie Jimmy Howard was up for the challenge. The Kings got one through with 13:12 remaining, as Drew Doughty took a shot from the point and Howard was unable to secure the puck. Williams saw it loose in the crease and shoved it across the goal line for his 17th goal of the season. In addition to Doughty, team captain Dustin Brown also received an assist on the play, stretching his points streak to nine games, which matches his career high from the 2007-08 season. The Red Wings went on the power play about five minutes later when Dustin Penner was called for holding, but it was the Kings who scored when Brown spotted some open ice in front of Kopitar and passed the puck in his direction. Kopitar did the rest, letting go of a wrist shot that beat Howard for his 21stgoal of the season. Kopitar has now scored a short-handed goal in each of his six seasons in the NHL. The Kings then killed the Penner penalty, the 29th consecutive power play they’ve erased.

The bad: The Kings had a 9-1 edge in shot on goals after Kopitar scored, but were out-shot, 5-1, over the final five minutes. The Kings have given up eight one-goal leads in the last four games and can’t sit back on their heels and try to protect a lead against Detroit, which erased three one-goal leads against the Kings on Friday in Detroit before winning, 4-3. The Kings also registered 10 giveaways in the opening period, compared to one for the Red Wings. Another trend that can’t continue if the Kings want to get two points tonight.

The in between: Doughty and Rob Scuderi, who were a combined minus-13 in the previous four games, are each a plus-2 heading into the second period. Let’s see if that holds up for another two periods.

Kings: Time to establish an identity vs. Red Wings

March, 13, 2012
Kings (32-25 -12, 76 points) vs. Detroit Red Wings (44-22-3, 91 points) at Staples Center, 7:30 p.m.

Five storylines to track:

1. Mystery men – Sitting courtside at the Clippers game Monday night was Mike Richards and Jeff Carter, two of the best players on the Kings. As they were shown on the multiple big screens that hover over the floor, there was, well, really no response. Almost as if they were unrecognizable. That would’ve never happened in Philadelphia, where both played for six seasons before they were traded to the Kings in the last nine months. One thing’s for certain, the Kings have supplanted the Clippers as the most unrecognizable pro sports team in L.A. Only a deep playoff run could possibly reverse that. At this point, the bigger challenge is just making the postseason for a third straight year.

2. Playoff picture – At least the Kings can cross the Ducks off the list of competition for one of the final Western Conference playoffs bids. Anaheim lost its third straight game Monday night in Colorado, leaving the team nine points back of the eighth-place Avs. Unless the Stars and Blackhawks accidentally pull their emergency chutes down the stretch, they can probably coast to the finish line, leaving five teams drag racing for the final two playoff berths. As it stands now, the Coyotes, Avs, Sharks, Flames and Kings are bunched within three points and have anywhere from 11 to 14 games remaining. To say this is a must-win is almost laughable. At this point forward, every game will fall into that category.

3. Defensive wizards – While the defensive pair of Rob Scuderi and Drew Doughty can’t seem to finish a shift without the puck hitting their net, rookie Slava Voynov and his veteran partner, Willie Mitchell, continue to pick up the slack. Voynov has made the trade for Carter last month look better and better each game, more than competently replacing Jack Johnson. In the eight games since the trade, Voynov has contributed a goal and three assists, all while building up a plus-6 rating. Mitchell’s numbers have been even better since he swapped partners, owning a goal and four assists with a plus-9 rating. He was a plus-2 in the previous 55 games, mostly playing alongside Johnson.

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Kings: Late lead coughed up in loss to Red Wings

March, 9, 2012
Detroit Red Wings 4, Kings 3

Eight keys to the game:

THE FACTS: Holding a one-goal lead with just over four minutes remaining against an injury-depleted team who was struggling just to gets shots on net, the Kings gave away the victory Friday night and a chance to move into the top eight in the Western Conference standings at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.

THE STAT: The Kings lost in regulation for the first time in 87 games when leading after the second period.

TURNING POINT: The Kings had taken their third lead of the game, 3-2, on a goal by rookie forward Dwight King with 5:54 remaining in the game, but they gave that one away too, as Valterri Filppula scored just under two minutes later. The Red Wings then took their first lead with 1:13 left when Johan Franzen passed to Darren Helm in front of the net and he scored Detroit’s fourth goal of the game on just their 15th shot on goal.

HOT: Never mind that Kings right wing Dustin Brown extended his points streak to seven games, or the Kings did not allow a shot on goal on three Detroit power plays to extend their streak of penalty kills to 25, if this loss doesn’t bring out the fire in Kings coach Darryl Sutter, nothing will. The Kings looked as if they were finally putting together a playoff push after winning their third straight high-scoring game Tuesday in Nashville, but then lost to the league’s worst team Thursday night in Columbus and now blew this late lead with so much on the line.

NOT: Let’s start with the defense pair of Rob Scuderi and Drew Doughty. Scuderi, an eight-year veteran with a Stanley Cup championship on his resume, was on the ice for all four goals by the Red Wings, tying his career high with a minus-4 rating. The last time he turned in a similar dud was December 2007. Doughty, who held out all of training camp while his agent insisted he become the highest-paid player on the Kings, matched his career high with a minus-3 rating. He let Helm get inside position on the game-winning goal, and had a bad turnover on a power play earlier in the third period that Detroit nearly turned into a short-handed goal. If the uninspired play of the Kings this season doesn’t get general manager Dean Lombardi fired, his decision to give a one-year wonder defenseman all that money surely will.

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Kings: Defense gets into (comedy) act in 8-2 loss to Detroit

December, 17, 2011
Detroit Red Wings 8, Kings 2

Eight keys to the game:

THE FACTS: Apparently, the problems aren’t just limited to the offensive end of the ice. The Kings, the lowest-scoring team in the NHL, allowed the most goals in a game in more than four years while getting held to two goals or less for the 11th straight game in the rout at Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.

THE STAT: The Kings actually out-shot the Red Wings, 29-27, but weren’t nearly as efficient. Detroit had five goals on its first 11 shots on net and six on its first 16.

TURNING POINT: Two minutes into the game and the Red Wings already led, 2-0, giving Kings’ fans a head start on their Saturday night plans. Kings defenseman Jack Johnson couldn’t connect on a pass to Trevor Lewis and Detroit took possession. Darren Helm took a shot that was saved by Kings goalie Jonathan Quick, but the rebound came out to Drew Miller who squeezed it past the goal line for a 1-0 lead. Fifteen seconds later, Jonathan Ericsson took a shot from the point that was deflected past Quick by Cory Emmerton for the second goal of his career and a 2-0 lead.

HOT: Kings defenseman Davis Drewiske has transformed from recurrent healthy scratch to the Kings best sniper on this four-game road trip. Drewiske scored his second goal in two games late in the first period to cut the deficit to 3-1. Prior to this week, Drewiske had scored just one NHL goal and that came two years ago into an empty net. The second line of Jarret Stoll, Justin Williams and Dustin Penner also carried their offensive load against Detroit, combining for a goal and four assists.

NOT: After allowing three goals on seven shots in the first period, Quick was given the hook in favor of Jonathan Bernier, the first time this season he hasn’t finished a game. Bernier wasn’t any better, allowing two goals on the first four shots he faced and five overall. Since Quick’s franchise-record three straight shutouts earlier this season, he has allowed 51 goals in 20 games for a 2.55 goals-against average and .906 save percentage, neither of which would rank among the top 20 goalkeepers in the NHL. Johnson, who grew up in suburban Detroit and played at the University of Michigan, was a career-high minus-4, dropping him to minus-17 in 15 career games against the Red Wings.

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Kings: Another streak L.A. would like to end

December, 17, 2011
Kings (14-13-4, 32 points) vs. Detroit Red Wings (19-10-1, 39 points) at Joe Louis Arena, 4 p.m. (PT)

Five storylines to track:

1. Record pace – The Kings have officially nosedived into uncharted waters. They've gone 10 consecutive games without scoring at least three goals in one of them, a drought they've never experienced in franchise history. Now they're scheduled to play a team that’s tied with them for the fifth-lowest goals-against average in the NHL at 2.23 a game. The good thing is, the Red Wings' defense takes the night off once in a while. They’ve allowed four goals or more in seven games this season, compared to four for the Kings.

2. A positive sign – The Kings are still buried in last place in the NHL in scoring but they received another long overdue goal Thursday night in a 2-1 victory in Columbus. Kings defenseman Davis Drewiske, a healthy scratch in 26 of the previous 30 games, scored early in the third period to tie the score, 1-1. It was the third straight goal by a player on the Kings who had previously not scored this season. Brad Richardson and Trent Hunter scored the previous two. Now they just need their best available goal scorer to get untracked. Anze Kopitar hasn’t scored in the last 10 games.

3. Injury updates – Kings leading goal scorer Mike Richards, who has missed the last six games with a concussion, joined the team in Detroit on Friday night but his appearance is more designed to boost the team’s moral than their goal-scoring total. Richards is not expected to play the remaining two games on the road trip and his return is still a major question mark. Another veteran, defenseman Willie Mitchell, will likely miss his fifth game in the last six with a groin injury. Mitchell re-aggravated the injury during warm-ups Tuesday in Boston.

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Ducks: Losses continue to mount

November, 20, 2011

ANAHEIM -- Call it a trend within a trend.

The Ducks lost for the 10th time in the last 11 games Sunday evening, giving up the first three goals to the visiting Detroit Red Wings before eventually falling, 4-2, at Honda Center.

In nine of the losses, the Ducks allowed the first goal, something that hasn't gone unnoticed by coach Randy Carlyle.

“We’ve had to play catch-up in all of these games,” he said. “We’re not establishing any forecheck, or any physicality early in the hockey game. It takes too long for us to do that. We’re receiving and we’re not on the aggressive side, for whatever reason. I wish I had the answer to it because we’d be correcting it.”

The Red Wings needed just one shot on goal to take a 1-0 lead. A few minutes later, the arena had a power failure that caused the game to be delayed 29 minutes. The Ducks managed to escape the first period without any further damage, but 14 seconds into the second the Red Wings scored again, this time after a pass from Ducks defenseman Cam Fowler was intercepted in the neutral zone, leading to a goal by Johan Franzen.

“I forced it,” Fowler said. “It was a terrible play, not something that I usually try and make. I have to be more patient than that.”

Seven minutes later, Detroit made it 3-0 on a goal by defenseman Brad Stuart.

“The way we’ve been behind in these last few games, you start trying to make up for everything all in one shift and maybe force some plays that you shouldn’t,” Fowler said “To me, it’s more the adjustments that teams are making. We just need to come up the ice as a five-man unit.”

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Kings: Quick leads the way against Red Wings

March, 9, 2011
Jonathan QuickClaus Andersen/Getty ImagesJonathan Quick has stopped 79 of the last 80 shots he has faced in Detroit over two games.
Kings 2, Detroit Red Wings 1

Eight keys to the game:

THE FACTS: Jonathan Quick stopped 28 shots at Joe Louis Arena and shut down the host Red Wings over the final two periods to extend Detroit’s losing streak to a season-long four games.

THE STAT: The Kings killed both Detroit penalties and have successfully killed 15 consecutive power plays by their opponent and 58 of the last 63.

TURNING POINT: With the score tied, 1-1, and seven minutes remaining in the second period, the Kings went on the power play after Detroit defenseman Brad Stuart was penalized for closing his hand on the puck. Kings rookie defenseman Alec Martinez took a slap shot from the point. Alexei Ponikarovsky got a piece of the puck and Dustin Brown got another, causing it to hit the back of the net for Brown’s team-high 22nd goal of the season.

HOT: Anze Kopitar scored earlier in the second period for the Kings, giving him 11 points in the last eight games and 16 in the last 13.

NOT: The Red Wings lost four straight games for the first time since February 2010. They haven’t lost five in a row since January 2009. Quick has stopped 79 of 80 shots in Detroit this season.

GOOD MOVE: After the Kings went scoreless on 10 straight power plays over the last two games, Kings coach Terry Murray altered the setup and the Kings came through with Brown’s man-advantage goal.

BAD MOVE: Shortly before Brown’s goal, the Kings got away with a four-minute high-sticking penalty. Michal Handzus struck Niklas Lidstrom on the lip with his stick, opening a cut that required stitches. None of the on-ice officials saw the penalty, however.

NOTABLE: The Kings moved from eighth to seventh in the Western Conference standings but remain just two points ahead of ninth-place Minnesota and 10th-place Anaheim.

UP NEXT: Friday at Columbus, 4 p.m. PT

Kings: Hoping to hang another loss on Detroit

March, 9, 2011
Kings (36-25-5, 77 points) vs. Detroit Red Wings (39-19-8, 86) at Joe Louis Arena, 4:30 p.m. ET

Five storylines to track:

1. Somebody has to win: When these teams met last week, the Kings were thoroughly handled in a 7-4 loss at Staples Center, allowing seven consecutive goals in a 7-4 loss. The Red Wings have since matched their longest losing streak of the season by dropping their last three games. The Kings bounced back to defeat Phoenix, 1-0, but have since lost two in a row. They haven’t lost three in a row since Jan. 17-20.

2. Shot slippage: The Kings have gone backwards in their "shot mentality." In the last three games, they have totaled 23 shots on goal or fewer, including a total of 15 shots on goal in the last three first periods. Before those games, the Kings had 42 shots on net in a 4-3 win against Colorado and 39 in the 7-4 loss to Detroit. As coach Terry Murray likes to say, you can’t win if you don’t shoot.

3. Score one for Clifford: Kings rookie forward Kyle Clifford scored the prettiest goal of his career in a 4-3 overtime loss Monday against Dallas, hitting the top right corner after taking a long pass from Trevor Lewis near the blue line and skating in on goalie Kari Lehtonen. Clifford was also the main instigator in a scrum that led to Steve Ott spearing Clifford with the blade of his stick, earning a five-minute major penalty and a game misconduct.

4. Jack has gone backwards: Since defenseman Jack Johnson inked a seven-year $30.5 million extension Jan. 9, he has scored just one goal, against lowly Edmonton. More disconcerting is he’s minus-5 in the last four games and doesn’t have a point in the last five. Johnson is a key player on the power-play unit and when he’s not clicking, neither are the Kings. In the last two games, they are 0 for 10 with the man advantage.

5. Wings seeing red: Detroit has had three days to ponder their collapse against the Coyotes, a game in which they blew a three-goal third-period lead and lost in a shootout, 5-4. Detroit coach Mike Babcock called out his club after the loss, questioning whether it was truly a championship-caliber team. Expect those words to hit home with the veteran Red Wings, who aren’t far from falling into rebuilding mode if they don’t win the Stanley Cup this season.

Ducks: Perry skates off early; Hiller still ailing

March, 1, 2011
ANAHEIM–As the Ducks prepare to take aim at the visiting Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday night, mysterious ailments continue to dominate the subject matter.

Leading-scorer Corey Perry skated off the ice at the start of practice Tuesday at Honda Center, apparently stricken by a lower-body injury that went rather unnoticed until Perry was suddenly gone. Ducks coach Randy Carlyle referred to the injury as a "body ailment" before settling on the intentionally vague NHL classification of lower-body injury.

"I didn’t see anything," Carlyle said. "He didn’t hit anybody. I didn’t see him fall down."

Perry is sixth in the league in both goals (31) and points (68) heading into Tuesday’s games. The Ducks are 11th in the Western Conference, but just one point behind eighth-place Dallas.

News isn’t getting any better for the team's other All-Star, goalkeeper Jonas Hiller, who has missed the last four games and eight of the last nine with a still undiagnosed ailment that’s causing him to feel sluggish and "behind the play."

Doctors have ruled out positional vertigo, he said.

"I don’t feel it in everyday life but on the ice it still doesn’t feel right," Hiller said. "Especially after the intensity gets higher, and the longer practice takes the worse I feel."

Hiller, who practiced with the team for about 45 minutes Tuesday, said the condition often arises after repeatedly turning his head, such as when he follows the puck behind the net.

"That kind of upsets my whole system," he said. "Then, I always feel behind the play because I’m always trying to catch up, and it just seems impossible to be right on time and it always seems to take me a second to realize what’s going on....it’s a weird feeling but definitely not a good feeling, especially for a goaltender."

After missing three games with a sore groin, second-line center Saku Koivu skated for about 30 minutes before practice, Carlyle said, and is close to returning but no date has been set.

With three of the West’s top eight teams coming in over the next five days, the Red Wings, Stars and Canucks, the Ducks need all the healthy bodies they can find.

Kings: Too bad they can't trade this performance

February, 28, 2011

LOS ANGELES—The leadership group of captain Dustin Brown and alternates Anze Kopitar and Matt Greene huddled together immediately following the 7-4 loss Monday night against the Detroit Red Wings.

The crux of their conversation remained behind closed doors, but it was clear when they emerged they weren’t pleased that an otherwise positive day for the Kings came to a solemn end.

“They dominated every facet of that game,” Greene said. “That’s not the words. They embarrassed us. You can’t take anything positive away from this game.”

The Kings came in knowing they would soon welcome a key addition to their team. Dustin Penner was traded to Los Angeles from Edmonton earlier in the day, giving the organization a proven goal scorer at left wing.

On top of that, Justin Williams received a four-year contract extension, securing the team's most skilled right wing.

Kings general manager Dean Lombardi said the addition of Penner was meant as a gift for the team’s stellar play since pulling out of 2-10 skid by going 11-1-3 in their next 15. The Kings had a funny way of showing their appreciation.

Or maybe they’re just holding on until Penner arrives.

Either way, the leadership trio wasn’t smiling.

“This video is going to be a good learning tool for a lot of guys on this team to realize what it takes to be a good team,” Greene said. “What the difference is between an elite team and good team in this league is.”

Greene cited a lack of preparation heading into the game, and not being able to bounce back when things went wrong. After taking a 1-0 lead just over four minutes into the game, the Kings allowed seven unanswered goals.

"The game got out of hand," Brown said.

Jonathan Quick allowed six goals on 24 shots before he was lifted in favor of Jonathan Bernier, who quickly allowed another goal. Kings coach Terry Murray said he thought about pulling Quick after the first goal, a side-angle shot that he missed with his stick, allowing the puck to trickle through his legs.

“You have to have your goaltender on top of his game anytime you play Detroit,” Murray said. “He had a real tough game here today.”

The Kings will need to bounce back Thursday against visiting Phoenix, another team that's ahead of them in the Western Conference standings.

"This time of year you can't sit there and feel bad for yourself," Brown said. "We have another game Thursday."
Dave Joseph of ESPN 710 Radio breaks down the 7-4 loss Monday night against the Detroit Red Wings at Staples Center.

Kings: Memorable day ends with forgetful loss

February, 28, 2011
LOS ANGELES—Not even Dustin Penner could have saved the Kings from this belly flop.

On the most gratifying day of the season, the Kings equalled their most one-sided loss, allowing seven straight goals in a 7-4 loss Monday night against the Detroit Red Wings at Staples Center.

The day began with the announcement that right wing Justin Williams had signed a four-year contract extension, then grew even brighter when word arrived in the final hour before the trade deadline that Penner had been dealt to Los Angeles from the Edmonton Oilers.

Penner is just what the Kings need, a top-line left wing that can play alongside Anze Kopitar. However, he won’t be available until at least Thursday against visiting Phoenix.

So, the Kings seemed to be in stand-by mode for much of the game against Detroit—either that or they were up all night wondering if they were on the trading block.

The Kings grabbed a 1-0 lead just over four minutes into the game, but then surrendered half a dozen goals on 24 shots, chasing starting goalkeeper Jonathan Quick. Two goals came on the power play and another was short-handed.

More to come from the locker room.