Final SO

Series (Game 6 of 6)

Series tied 3-3

Game 1: Saturday, October 3rd
Game 2: Saturday, October 24th
Game 3: Monday, November 2nd
Game 4: Thursday, December 10th
Game 5: Saturday, December 26th
Game 6: Thursday, April 8th

Coyotes 3

(50-25-6, 106 pts)

Kings 2

(45-27-8, 98 pts)

10:30 PM ET, April 8, 2010

STAPLES Center, Los Angeles, California

1 2 3 SO T
ARI 0 0 2 13
LA 0 1 1 02

D. Doughty (Kings - D): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

M. Lombardi (Coyotes - C): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

J. Johnson (Kings - D): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

Coyotes-Kings Preview


The Phoenix Coyotes and Los Angeles Kings are headed to the postseason for the first time since 2002. Their next meeting might not be the last time they'll square off this season.

Two of the NHL's biggest surprises conclude their regular-season series Thursday night in a possible first-round playoff preview at Staples Center.

Though the eight playoff qualifiers in the Western Conference have been determined, the initial postseason matchups have not. Phoenix (49-25-6), however, clinched the No. 4 seed and home-ice advantage in the first round with a 5-2 win over Nashville on Wednesday.

"There's excitement in the area for the playoffs," said forward Taylor Pyatt, who scored his 11th goal. "We want to take advantage of that ... and we're really looking forward to staring the playoffs at home."

Los Angeles (45-27-7), meanwhile, is in seventh place but one point out of fifth, which would mean a first-round matchup with the Coyotes.

"We talked about making the playoffs, (that was) our goal this year in training camp," coach Terry Murray told the Kings' official Web site.

The Kings have a good chance to improve their playoff positioning and win the season series with the Coyotes. Los Angeles is 3-2-0 versus Phoenix in 2009-10, but the Coyotes won 3-2 at home in the teams' last meeting Dec. 26.

Los Angeles' Jonathan Quick has a 3.36 goals-against average while starting all five games against the Coyotes, and will make a seventh straight attempt at winning his 40th game. Though he's allowed 17 goals over the previous six contests, Quick will tie the franchise's single-season record with his 71st appearance Thursday.

He was pulled after giving up three goals on eight shots in a 5-4 shootout win over Anaheim on Tuesday.

"He's our goaltender," Murray said of the Kings' new single-season wins leader. "He's the guy that's going to play for us. He's playing (Thursday), and he will get one of the two at the end this season, and then he'll be ready to go in the playoffs."

Dustin Brown and Justin Williams each had a goal and an assist as Los Angeles rallied from a 4-1 deficit against its southern California rivals to improve to 3-0-1 since losing four in a row.

Brown, the Kings captain, has four goals with two assists in his last three games, and three goals with two assists against Phoenix this season.

Phoenix captain Shane Doan has three goals and an assist against Los Angeles in 2009-10. He snapped a 23-game goal-scoring drought with his 18th on Wednesday.

"It's great for Doaner," said Ilya Bryzgalov, who made 23 saves for his 42nd win. "He tries so hard. It's so many games. We all felt bad for him. It was bad luck on his side."

Wojtek Wolski scored his career-high 23rd goal and added an assist for the Coyotes, who've won two in a row.

With an 11-4-2 record and 2.40 GAA versus the Kings, Bryzgalov likely will be back in net for the Coyotes in this back-to-back scenario.

Though Phoenix won 6-3 at Los Angeles on Oct. 3, it's been outscored 12-5 while losing four straight road games overall.