There was something special about tonight. I felt it when I saw the spot lights emanating from Staples Center above Los Angeles. Kings’ fans looked hostile. We wore scowls. We looked for a reason to pick a fight but the problem with Canuck fans in L.A. is their men are generally 4’11” and struggle with basic hygiene. Nobody wants to wear the stench of a bloodied whale. That may be a tough one to explain to the wife.
We came into tonight’s game after a dominating third period against the Thrashers. I had the sense it may carry over. It did…and how…
The Kings’ goals came from Stoll, Williams and a couple from Brownie. Vancouver’s lone goal hatched from one of the zygotes.
Throughout most of the game, I found myself focused on our defense, even when we had the puck. I have accepted that we have a good defense. I am warming up to the fact we may have one of the best in the league. While Doughty and Mitchell are still adapting to one another, they get better each game. Doughty started to resemble his old self mid way through the game. Johnson is doing something I saw from him in the Olympics and playoffs – a consistently high level of play. His body language, calm demeanor on defense and seamless passing (including the beauty tonight on Stoll’s stick) has me wound up that he is steadily climbing toward his potential of an all-star in this league.
Meanwhile, our boy Jake got his first assist. I cheered like he was my son after his name was announced.
Whiskey had his best game of the season. Toward the end of the third, a thought occurred to me. Who goes down after Greene returns? That may be another article.
The positives from tonight’s match are simple:
- Williams’ game has reached another level. He is backing off defenseman with his skating. His weaving and opening of lanes once he crosses the blue line with the puck is nearly orgasmic.
- Stoll has clicked with Smyth and Williams. We have a second line.
- 5 on 5 scoring? No problem tonight. Each of our goals were at even strength. Now, let’s fix that powerplay.
- Quick is in the zone. He made one save that looked far easier than it should. Full speed lateral move with stick on the ice and pads covering the low corner stops a low and hard one timer. I gasped.
- Kopitar’s burst of speed and cut through the center that resulted in Brown’s first goal made me comment – good grief Anze, do that more!
There was so much awesome out there, but I have to leave something for Surly to write about after he stops celebrating this win. I have the sense my boy won’t be feeling any pain tonight…tomorrow on the other hand…
I could go into a few areas of concern that did show tonight, but I will save that for tomorrow. We have 4 days off between this game and the next. Plenty of time to talk puck.
Enjoy the victory. It was earned. Nucks have been weight and measured. They are left wanting.
Categories: L.A. Kings News