Underneath the adrenaline, the Kings’ outrage over the game-winning goal, and the specter of a 2010 playoff rematch (and possible 2011 playoff preview) was a familiar truth: The Kings need to score more.
The good news is that Jonathan Quick (33 saves) was good. But he could do nothing about the Kings’ inability to convert a power play or put more than 22 shots on goal.
The bad news is that, in the last two games combined, the Kings have scored twice and registered 40 shots. That might amount to a walk in the park for NHL-leading Vancouver, which had a surprise up its sleeve by matching the Kings’ physical play for 60 minutes.
They also had this Daniel Sedin goal, which drew the outrage of Quick, Drew Doughty, and Terry Murray — judge for yourself whether it’s legal or not:
Tomorrow’s story will focus on the unusally strong reaction by the Kings to Sedin’s goal.
Here are a few notes that won’t make the paper:
- Canucks coach Alain Vigneault said he didn’t get a good look at Alexei Ponikarovsky’s second-period hit on Dan Hamhuis that drew only a boarding penalty on Ponikarovsky. That was the right call and it was tough to sympathize with Ponikarovsky’s “who, me?” look after the whistle. He put his left forearm behind Hamhuis’ neck as he drove the defenseman into the boards. Hamhuis already suffered a concussion earlier in the season and told the Vancouver Sun that Ponikarovsky “needs to be more careful.”
- There were several injury-inducing blows that would put a rec-leaguer on IR: Jannik Hansen’s shoulder-first hit to the head of Trevor Lewis early in the first period (Lewis came back later in the period); the puck off the stick of Mikael Samuelsson that Ryan Smyth absorbed in his face (Smyth also returned later in the period); the puck off the stick of Rob Scuderi that Tanner Glass absorbed just below his windpipe (didn’t miss a shift); something that sent Keith Ballard down the tunnel for a minute in the second period (he came back later in the period); Ponikarovsky’s hit on Hamhuis; Dustin Brown’s hard elbow to the head of Alex Burrows (who stayed in); not to mention the five minor penalties for roughing. That’s our long-winded way of calling the game “intense.”
- Wayne Simmonds started the game at right wing with usual second-liners Ryan Smyth and Jarret Stoll, but finished with third-liners Ponikarovsky and Michal Handzus.
- Daniel Sedin’s take on his goal: “I made contact I think … there’s going to be contact out there. To be honest, I thought they were more angry with Burr (Burrows). I thought he touched the goalie maybe, but I was battling in front and the puck ended up on my stick. I can’t really say too much. I can’t remember.”
- The Kings went 22-35 in the faceoff circle, which made a big difference on the power play.
- Including shots that missed the net and were blocked, the Canucks outshot the Kings 62-38.