NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Thursday, January 24th
(All times Eastern)
Los Angeles Kings (0-2-0) at Edmonton Oilers (1-1-0), 9:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Los Angeles Kings have not gotten their Stanley Cup
title defense off to a great start. They hope to get things going on Thursday
night in a place they have had some recent success as the Kings visit the
Coming off the franchise's first championship, the Kings were routed by the
Chicago Blackhawks 5-2 at home on Saturday before dropping Tuesday's 3-1
decision at the Colorado Avalanche.
Los Angeles took a one-goal lead into the third frame thanks to a goal by Kyle
Clifford, but the Kings went 0-for-6 on the power play and the Avalanche
scored three times in the final period.
Jonathan Quick stopped all 19 shots he faced through the first 40 minutes
before surrendering three goals on 12 third-period shots. Los Angeles had been
86-0-9 in its previous 95 games when taking a lead after two periods.
"There's no secret to it. We didn't play well in the third," said the Kings'
Anze Kopitar. "We made some mistakes and turnovers that cost us. We played a
solid first 40 (minutes), but then for some reason after that wasn't our team
... and mistakes are going to cost you."
Kopitar made his season debut after sitting out Saturday's loss due to a
sprained right knee suffered while playing in Sweden during the lockout.
Hoping to avoid their first 0-3 start since 1985-86, the Kings bring an eight-
game point streak in Edmonton into this contest. They are 7-0-1 in that span
since a regulation loss at Rexall Place on Feb. 28, 2008.
Los Angeles has won six of eight and nine of the last 13 meetings in this
The young Oilers began this season with a 3-2 shootout win over the Vancouver
Canucks on Sunday, but were routed 6-3 by the visiting San Jose Sharks on
Tuesday. The Sharks netted all six of their goals in the first period and went
3-for-5 on the power play.
"If pain is going to make us a better team, that's a lot of pain right there.
... The success of their power play against our PK through those first minutes
and that period as a whole -- we lost our discipline not only with the
penalties but our whole defensive structure just disappeared," said Oilers
coach Ralph Krueger.
The loss spoiled the first career goals of Nail Yakupov, the first overall
pick of the 2012 draft, and rookie defenseman Justin Schultz. Taylor Hall also
scored in defeat.
"We were positive from our win in Vancouver, but there might have been a sense
of complacency," said Hall, "and then we run into a team that has a lot of
veterans on it and they know how to win. We can learn examples from every
Devan Dubnyk was pulled in favor of Yann Danis after he was beaten six times
on 17 shots through the opening 20 minutes. Danis recorded 14 saves over the
final two periods.
01/24 10:49:09 ET