Here’s what Kings coach Darryl Sutter said after a reporter asked Thursday if he looked at the NHL standings: “If you’re a Canadian, everybody’s looking at the standings. I’m a Canadian, so I’m looking at them.”
A reporter asked Kings coach Darryl Sutter if every game from now until the end of the regular season is must-win. Here’s how Sutter responded after the Kings’ 4-3 shootout win over the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday at Staples Center:
“There’s no must anywhere. You don’t have to do anything. You try and win. There is no such thing as a must-win. Nobody gets locked up or thrown in the ocean or anything like that. Other than that, it’s just a game.”
KINGS AT OILERS
Faceoff: 6:30 p.m. TV/Radio: FSW, 790-AM
Kings general manger Dean Lombardi didn’t make a deal at the NHL’s trade deadline Monday, so the roster will remain intact for the rest of the regular season and the playoffs, if they make the playoffs. The Kings have lost three consecutive games, including a lackluster 5-2 defeat Sunday to the Winnipeg Jets, and fell from a playoff spot after winning eight consecutive games and returning to the postseason field. The Kings are 29-21-12 overall, but only 9-14-6 away from Staples Center. Only the Buffalo Sabres (seven), Toronto Maple Leafs (seven), Edmonton Oilers (eight) have fewer road wins than the Kings, which explains their predicament. Coach Darryl Sutter hasn’t been pleased with the play of his veterans during the Kings’ three-game losing streak, but he hasn’t named names. The Oilers are 18-35-10, and last in the Pacific Division and in the Western Conference.
Here’s Darryl Sutter summing up the Kings’ losing streak, which was extended to three games with a 5-2 loss Sunday afternoon to the Winnipeg Jets: “The Ottawa game we got a goal taken away from us (on a quick whistle during a goal-mouth scramble in a 1-0 loss). Then I said after that game some of older guys didn’t play very, and I think in Anaheim some of them didn’t play very well and some tonight did not play very well. So it’s not that it’s not a team thing.”
Actually, he said it a couple of different times to a couple of different questions after the Kings’ 4-2 loss to the Ducks on Friday at the Honda Center, but this was his response to the difference in the contest: “I think their forecheck overwhelmed us the whole night and it just caught up with us.”
Here’s some of what Kings coach Darryl Sutter had to say about a 1-0 loss Thursday to the Ottawa Senators that ended their eight-game winning streak:
“Nah, I thought our defense was really slow moving pucks in the first period and in the second we passed the puck to them. It probably should have been 2-1 for them after the second and then in the third we just couldn’t get the goal.”
Sutter than interrupted a reporter’s question to say, “Jeff Carer’s line was really good, but I think that after that it was pretty much zero.”
Asked if the Kings were looking ahead to Friday’s game against the Ducks, Sutter said, “No. I would be concerned that some of our older players didn’t play very well tonight and won’t tomorrow.”
Won’t play tomorrow?
“Older players didn’t play very well tonight and won’t tomorrow night, that would be my concern,” Sutter said. “Why would they be looking ahead to tomorrow night? You get two points for every game.”
Tomorrow’s advance tonight …
SANTA CLARA, Calif. — No one will ever confuse ancient, historic Dodger Stadium with sparkling, new Levi’s Stadium. After all, one is the Dodgers’ iconic ballpark, the other is the new high-tech home field of football’s San Francisco 49ers.
The Kings experienced many of the same sights and sounds Friday in the Bay Area as they did more than a year ago in Chavez Ravine. Their practice in preparation for Saturday night’s Stadium Series game against the San Jose Sharks was similar, but hardly the same, though.
“I think last year was significantly different from this year,” Kings coach Darryl Sutter said. “We were playing in an historic building last year. This is a new building. Everything other than that was different. I thought it was pretty unique last year to be able to do it.”
To do it again, as the reigning Stanley Cup champions, is different, too.
“For a lot of guys, it’s never going to happen again,” Sutter said.
Last season, a roller rink, a beach volleyball court and kids on skateboards and wearing roller blades surrounded the ice at Dodger Stadium. This season, twin water features, plus fake green rolling hills and gray mountains adorned the area around the midfield rink.
Kiss played last season between periods. John Fogerty and Melissa Etheridge will headline tonight’s show. Temperatures on Jan. 25, 2014, were in the low 60s for the opening faceoff. The temperature is forecast to be an equally comfortable 57 degrees.
“I’d like to play a game in the snow, sure,” Sutter said. “Everybody thinks everybody has played outdoors. Not everybody has. Guys are too young. They might have skated outdoors, but very few have played outdoors other than last year.”
Kings coach Darryl Sutter definitely has his likes and dislikes. When asked about John Fogerty performing during the intermission of the Stadium Series game Saturday against the San Jose Sharks, Sutter said he had his own preference.
“Johnny Cash,” Sutter said.
Cash is no longer with us, sadly, as reporters pointed out to Sutter.
Kings defenseman Alec Martinez didn’t make the trip to Santa Clara for the Stadium Series game Saturday against the San Jose Sharks. He remained behind in Southern California, on the mend from a concussion suffered in a Feb. 7 game against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Kings coach Darryl Sutter provided no new details on Martinez’s return from the head injury, other than to say the Stanley Cup Final hero was riding a stationary bicycle and not cleared to resume skating.