WHO: Los Angeles Kings (39-26-10) @ Colorado Avalanche (52-15-6)
What: NHL Regular Season Game
When: Wednesday, April 13 @ 6:30 PM Pacific
Where: Dairy – Denver, CO
How to follow: Video: TNT – AUDIO – iHeart Radio – TWITTER: OoDooleyLAK & @LAKings
Tonight’s match: The Kings ended their three-game tour with a solo trip to Denver in Colorado this evening.
face to face: The Kings have dropped the first two games against Avalanche this season, with both defeats coming on home ice at the Crypto.com Arena. Anze Kopitar has scored the only Kings goal from those two encounters, with the senior center also leading last season against Colorado, with a team-high five points from eight games (0-5-5). Avalanche has won the last eight face-off games into the slope tonight.
Lives of Kings: The Kings suffered a three-game defeat in Chicago yesterday and are now set to break their series against Avalanche.
Following on Jonathan Quick’s win in Chicago yesterday, Cal Peterson is expected to return tonight against Colorado. The Kings have not used the hook on either side since the 2017-18 season, although his performance yesterday was excellent in Chicago. With a saving percentage of .898 and 3.78 goals against the average, in seven career starts, Peterson has not beaten an avalanche.
The Kings didn’t skate this morning, considering the back-to-back set, we won’t have a real idea of the lineup until the buck drop approaches. Looking at yesterday’s performance, there’s no reason to dismiss anyone in terms of performance. However, as players come out of injury, thinking out loud can be a potential factor in the back-to-back of the journey. We are waiting for that question until it warms up.
For reference, here’s how the team lined up in Chicago last night –
Tonight @LAKings Tax Rushes –
Khaliev – Kopitar – Kempe
Moore – Donald – Arvidson
Iafallo – Lizotte – Brown
Vilardi – Byfield – Kupari
Roy – Tursi
Noble – carver
Maatta – Spence
– Sock Dooley (DooleyLAK) April 13, 2022
Avalanche Life: Colorado entered action tonight and won six straight games and a 7-1-1 record in its last nine games overall. Avalanche has been idle since their 2-1 win in the shootout against Edmonton on Saturday.
Goldilocks Darcy Cumber has started four of the last six games for Colorado and 11 of the last 15 games, and he is expected to be back in contention against his former team this evening. Kuimper, who has faced the Kings more than anyone else, brings with him a 7-6-3 record, a .931 saving percentage and an average of 2.05 goals in tonight’s game.
Here is how the last avalanche against Edmonton was lined up, according to the Colorado team –
– x – Colorado Avalanche (Avalanche) April 10, 2022
Colorado is still without the regular top-six forwards Gabriel Landescock and Naseem Kadri and defender Ryan Murray.
Behind the back
Regardless of the task at hand, the Kings enter the game tonight as one of the best teams in the NHL in the second half of the back-to-back sets this season.
Under such circumstances, the Kings have won six games in a row, bringing the record to 9-3-2 with zero days rest this season. With 1.43 points per game in the second half of the back-to-back sets, the Kings are ranked third best team in the NHL this season, trailing only rivals Colorado and Tampa Bay tonight. No team in the league has scored more than 20 points for the Kings.
What is the key to success? Well, there is no secret formula, but there is certainly some pride in the room in these kinds of situations. If you ask kings there are some different reasons –
Blake Lysot – I think it revolves around each other. Everyone wants to play again and again, not a reason to say you’re tired. I think everyone is flocking around to it, especially at this time of year, when we need points. Colorado, they are a fantastic team, they play well, but we have to play Kings hockey
Dustin Brown – Honestly, personally, I usually feel good about the second game for some reason. This year it was a little more experience, guys, learning how to manage it and we are a much deeper team than last year and can count on more guys on that second night.
Todd McClellan – We’ve played well back-to-back, we seem to be simplifying things, we understand the verification part of it, but we’ve going to play against a good club and we know it. We will be tested and our “A” game will be received by everyone in line from our Goldender. This will be a good challenge for us.
It is never as easy as explaining why things go well in situations like this, but what is said makes a lot of sense. The Kings value their excellent verification and they have clearly demonstrated their ability to simplify. It’s part of On-Ice, X and Owen. Then Lisotte’s message, the outcome of the rally, can not be underestimated. Short rest, insomnia, it is important for a team to come together to achieve. Brown’s thoughts are also meaningful, emphasizing the importance of depth and how this season’s team can play four lines most effectively.
Let’s see how the total number the Kings have recorded so far this season falls tonight.
What can Brown do for you?
Two points in his first game, 72 percent of shot attempts were restricted to him on the ice – the best percentage in the forward – and 11 scoring chances in the snow, second only to linemate Alex Ifflow.
It turned out to be an interesting one for Dustin Brown, who has missed the last 15 games due to injury.
“It felt good,” he said. “It’s a toe injury, I was able to put my feet down a few weeks ago, which is different than a lower body injury. Overall, I felt better.
While his chronology at the time of the injury is largely unknown, his return in any capacity is welcome. Last night, Alex skated with a familiar linemate on the iFollow and an unfamiliar linemate at Blake Lisotte, and the three players combined to form a useful third line, giving Todd McLellan and his crew four reliable forward units.
“We had some good chemistry, and often played well,” Lisot said of the trio. “Brownie was beautiful. Taking a month off and jumping back in, it’s hard to get your game time back right now, two weeks later I had to do it against Minnesota, and it was hard. Great pride to Brownie, he played a great game and he looked home.
McClellan has repeatedly brought up the idea of coming back at this time of year, and he has seen it live here over the past few weeks to understand the situation. Teams are at full speed now, so it can be challenging to be right at that pace as time goes on. Brown was definitely like him, which is a real testament to him.
Look at his line-up goal as a perfect example of his game. Brown used his size and physique to enter the attack zone and retain buck possessions. He eventually created a play and invented the ifapho, which he eventually targeted in the trailer Lisot.
“Dustin, at first, had a tremendous game,” McLalen said. “Come in, get hurt as long as he’s, and practice a little as much as we did, I think this is a story we’ve told a million times. Come in and give us the type of game he did, it’s huge.
The Kings often, this season, go three or four lines, struggling for that consistency in line one. Last night the team felt together on rare occasions that they had a balance in all four lines, which is a big reason why Brown and Eiffello reunite in that third line. Here’s a look at how it continues in these final seven games.
“We know what we are opposed to.”
In particular, the current head of the NHL’s President’s Trophy, the league’s second best home record and the Kings’ opposition against a team that has not played in three days. While the Kings are in the second half through the tour last night, they arrived in Colorado at 2pm last night, close to 3am on the inner clock, if you consider the time difference.
A lofty task, of course, but the Kings are not ready to roll. At this point in the season, there is no alternative because they are not interested in giving reasons. With no excuses allowed when it comes to these final seven games of the regular season, there are two important points lined up this evening.
As the Kings mentioned above, facing the set again and again is one of the best in the NHL this season. Tonight also marks the Kings’ final game against the team currently in the postseason, and the final six sets against teams currently out of the playoffs. That doesn’t mean it’s a ton at this point, but the Kings are finishing their table tonight, and they will definitely finish it in style against one of the best teams in the NHL.
Dustin Brown said in advance tonight:
“From the look, they’m a good team, it’s a big test for us. I think it’s a great game for us because if we want to be a playoff team, these are the types of games you have to play. They’re a great team, they have to be number one in the league. They are kicking the Western conference [crap] Outside of everyone. This is a great game for this team to see where we are. I know every game is huge, but this game can be a big statement. This is a game that can ensure our playoff chances if we win, because on the outside, probably everyone sees this as a loss. So, if we can find a way to win, it puts more pressure on other teams. If you look at the strength of the table and those things, it doesn’t matter who you play with, you have to win.
OK, Insiders. A challenge awaits in Colorado tonight, but what is the most important hockey without challenges? 2 more points as the Kings arrived for the avalanche in the Pacific this evening at 6:30 PM!