Los Angeles Hockey: Jamal Mayers

Kings: No shakes for Terry Murray after series loss

April, 26, 2011
LOS ANGELES — It's safe to say the San Jose Sharks got in the last word.

On their way out of town following a 4-3 series-clinching overtime victory Monday night at Staples Center, Sharks forwards Jamal Mayers and Devin Setoguchi fired off a couple cyberspace jabs at Kings coach Terry Murray, who earlier in the Western Conference quarterfinal series had issued strong statements aimed at members of San Jose.

“Tough series with 3 OT games!" Mayers wrote on his personal Twitter account about two hours after the game. “Too bad Murray didn't have class to shake hands like players (who bled) and Asst Coaches!”

Murray was apparently not in the traditional center-ice handshake line that immediately follows the end of a series. His whereabouts were not questioned during the postgame news conference, as most reporters were too busy rushing down to the locker room or writing on deadline, to notice.

The players did.

“Would like to know why coach of the kings Terry Murray never shook our hands??,” wrote Setoguchi, who assisted on Joe Thornton's overtime goal. “Might be a first??”

Murray, who will not be available to the media until Wednesday or Thursday, a team spokesman said, criticized members of the Sharks for their dangerous play after earlier losses in the series.

Following a 6-3 defeat in Game 4, Murray called a tripping penalty on Dany Heatley late in the third period a “gutless move,” saying it appeared Heatley was attempting a slew foot on rookie defenseman Alec Martinez, an illegal move in which a player sweeps the leg out from under an opponent, usually from an unsuspecting blindside.

“That’s where you break your leg,” he said. “That’s where you blow your knee out. I hate that play. That’s a gutless move in my mind.”

Following a 3-2 overtime loss to the Sharks in Game 1, Murray said Jason Demers' airborne check on Kings forward Ryan Smyth was “five times as severe” as the hit Kings forward Jarret Stoll leveled on San Jose defenseman Ian White. Stoll was suspended and White also missed Game 2 because of an upper-body injury.

Demers, meanwhile, did not receive a penalty and went on to score two goals in the series and add an assist.

Kings: Brown, Mitchell double up on Sharks

March, 24, 2011
After the 2nd period:

Kings 2, San Jose Sharks 1

The good: In less than two minutes, the Kings doubled their goal output from the previous three games. They also ended an 0-for-15 slump on the power play on their first goal, which tied the score, 1-1, at the 7:18 mark. With right wing Jamal Mayers in the box for holding the stick of Michal Handzus, rookie defenseman Alec Martinez dumped the puck into the San Jose zone. The rubber caromed behind the net where Kings left wing Alexei Ponikarovsky got to it first, pushing the puck back toward Dustin Brown, who was camped by the right goal post. Brown pulled the puck in from behind the net and slipped it past goalkeeper Antti Niemi for his 24thgoal of the season. Just over a minute later, Handzus, Ryan Smyth and Oscar Moller did an admirable job on the forecheck to keep the puck in the San Jose zone. Moller, playing in his first game since getting called up from the minors following the shoulder injury to Justin Williams, drove to the net but Niemi made a pad save. The puck caromed out high to defenseman Willie Mitchell, who sent a one-timer into the net for a 2-1 lead. It’s the fourth goal of the season for Mitchell, matching his career high. In addition to assisting on the first goal, Martinez also made the defensive play of the period, sliding on his belly to break up a shot during a Sharks’ 2-on-1 with a little more than three minutes remaining in the period.

The bad: The Kings saw their streak of 35 consecutive penalty kills come to an end 35 seconds into the period. Jarret Stoll was still off the ice for a questionable slashing penalty at the end of the first period when Patrick Marleau slid a pass to Joe Pavelski, who redirected the puck into the net for his 14th point in the last six games.

The in between: The Kings limited the Sharks to four shots on goal that period and have a 27-13 edge total. Unfortunately, the score isn’t as uneven.