Quick's Conquest: Kings shut out Islanders
Game 69: Kings 1, Islanders 0
Again, I apologize for the lateness of this recap. Turns out the draw of spending the day with the family at home was much greater than the draw to write this up. Such is life in Hockeywood.
Anyhow, the Kings won. Against the Islanders. The 68 point Islanders. Yeah, it's nothing to brag about, but points is points, and theK Kings need them desperately.
With the exception of Jonathan Quick and L.A.'s penalty kill, which continued its hot streak of 24 straight kills, the win wasn't pretty.
Quick notched his fourth shutout of the season, all of which have been at home this season. It matches his shutout total from last season, which all came on the road.
Brad Richardson was reunited with Anze Kopitar and Wayne Simmonds by coach Terry Murray. The dividends paid immediately when Richardson popped one past Dwayne Roloson to give the Kings and the game its only score.
A funny thing happened at the end of the first. Murray pulled Quick with seconds left in the first period and the faceoff deep in the Islanders zone. Guess Murray is finally trying to give Quick some rest.
Other than the Richardson goal, the Kings struggled offensively all game. They mustered 7 shots in the second period, and couldn't get back on the same page. Good thing it was the Islanders in Staples, and not a team like Detroit.
With the win, the Kings finished the season 14-4-0 vs. eastern conference, the best record of a team against the other conference they play against. Another side note: the Kings are 14-5-1 against the Pacific Division, which bodes well for the Kings.
Next up is Colorado on Star Wars Night. I have a whole other blog about that. But this game should be a slobberknocker, as these teams are experiencing a "renaissance," according to the STATS preview. No word if they will wear those funny hats from the Faire.
• AP: Quick blanks Islanders 1-0
Jonathan Quick posted his fourth shutout of the season and Brad Richardson scored in the first period, leading the Kings to a 1-0 victory on Saturday night.• LA Times: Workmanlike win is a key one for Kings
The Kings' mood was definitely lighter after Quick's fourth shutout backed a defensive effort that stretched the team's penalty-killing streak to 24 over eight games. The Islanders managed only five shots on four power plays and rarely pressured Quick.• LA Kings: Quick sinks Islanders
The Kings didn’t get the offensive breakthrough they were looking for, but they did get two points. In late March, that’s really the only thing that matters.They said it
“I think it’s just being real detailed. Everyone is competing, everyone is battling. We’re killing off a lot of time down in their zone. Richie, today, among a few other guys, just spent some time in the corners of their zone, and that really helps out. We’re blocking shots, and the PK is really playing well right now.” – Jonathan Quick, on the successful penalty kill of late
“Just getting two points from this game was huge. We needed a win. I think it’s important for us, as a group in here, to realize, though, that it’s just one game." – Dustin Brown, on getting two points when other West teams keep winning
“Chemistry and flow and the compete attitude here tonight, the desperation that was shown from the beginning, was good. I liked what was going on with the four lines, to get some flow and everybody digging in to do their part." – Terry Murray, (on a better effort from the Kings
Across the Kingdom
• The Royal Half: Una Victoria Grande
Let's not get ahead of ourselves here. Squeaking out a 1-0 victory over a team that is 3rd to last in the Eastern Conference and is playing in the final game of a 3 game West Coast road trip is nothing to get too excited about. But as Half Season Ticket Holder Buddy calmly said to me tonight... "2 points are 2 points." I hate it when he is right.• LA Kings News: Kings skate to a vanilla win, no toppings for Islanders
Sorry New York fans, I feel for you, I do, but that is a brutal line-up and despite the immense amount of hard work the mildly talented team puts in, the lack of skill, depth and structure shows. It shows when the Kings have little to no trouble breaking the puck across the offensive blue line and when they pressure the d-men into continuous turnovers for favorable offside calls and it especially shows when the Kings’ control the puck for nearly all 8 minutes of 4 separate power plays.• The Throne Room: Quick, Strong PK Help the Kings Bounce Back
(Ed. note: Welcome back, Jeremy) I’m no conspiracy theorist, but if Phoenix somehow wins the Pacific Division, it will be very difficult for me to escape the feeling that the NHL may have fixed the whole thing. A team that finished with the same amount of points (and wins) as the Kings did last season - in bankruptcy turmoil with the threat of relocation. A coaching change and a couple of veterans rostered in favor of developing youngsters, and you’re telling me this team is going to win the Pacific Division perhaps? I don’t buy it for a second. The NHL owns the Coyotes at this point, and Bettman’s insistence that the team not be relocated to a market where it isn’t hemorrhaging money along with the rest of the pieces make the smell emanating from the Arizona desert a fishy one at best.• HockeyBuzz's Matthew Barry: Kings Keep Pace With 1-0 Win
Jonathan Quick made some nice saves when he had to but otherwise wasn't really tested. Then again, he wasn't facing Heatley/Thornotn/Setoguchi. Congrats on your 4th shutout of the season.• Inisde Hockey's Brian Kennedy: Murray's New Ideas Work Just Well Enough
Is Justin Williams ready to play a less-delicate game? It’s not that he needs to bang and crash out there, but he needs to do more going into the zone for the puck that he is. He rarely hits his man or separates anyone from the puck. Rather, he pokes at it.From across the aisle, the New Yawk viewpoint
• LightHouse Hockey: Islanders stymied by Quick
There was a stretch in the latter half of the second period where the Islanders got chance after chance but could not buy a goal. Jonathan Quick was making acrobatic saves, and the Kings defense and forwards were diving and sprawling to block or get their sticks on rebounds. Justice would say the Isles at least deserved the equalizer to force the Kings to score at least two goals to win this one. But justice and the Colin Campbell NHL don't work well together.• NYI Point Blank: The visitors do everything except score
Facing a talented home team looking to get a stronger hold on a playoff berth, the Islanders did so many things right. They just could not finish - or Jonathan Quick stoned them - in a bitter 1-0 loss Saturday night in Los Angeles.Peeping the dailies
Video: Kings down Islanders