NHL Preview from The Sports Network|
Sunday, April 20th
(All times Eastern)
Los Angeles Kings (0-1) at San Jose Sharks (1-0), 10 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Los Angeles Kings hope to get off to a better start
in Game 2 at San Jose, as they try to even up the Western Conference
quarterfinals in Sunday's road clash against the Sharks.
San Jose claimed Game 1 on home ice by a 6-3 score, but that was after
carrying a 5-0 advantage into the third period. Los Angeles will try to build
off its strong finish in Game 1, as it attempts to avoid falling into an 0-2
hole before the series shifts to Southern California for Games 3 and 4.
Already holding a 1-0 lead after Joe Thornton scored just over three minutes
into the game, Tomas Hertl and Patrick Marleau tallied 48 seconds apart late
in San Jose's three-goal first period. Raffi Torres, playing in his first game
since March 8, added a goal in the second period and Marc-Edouard Vlasic made
it 5-0 later in the middle stanza.
After the Kings made their push in the third, Brent Burns sealed the win for
San Jose with an empty-net goal in the final minute of regulation.
Burns, Hertl and Vlasic each finished with a goal and assist, while James
Sheppard picked up a pair of helpers. Hertl, who had 15 goals and 10 assists
in 37 games during his rookie campaign this year, became the first player in
Sharks history to record multiple points in his postseason debut .
Antti Niemi recorded 31 saves for the Sharks, who were bounced from last
year's playoffs by the Kings in seven games in the conference semifinals.
"Obviously we're a little disappointed in the way we responded there (in the
third), but for the most part, it was a real good game on our behalf," Sharks
head coach Todd McLellan said.
Jake Muzzin, Trevor Lewis and Slava Voynov supplied the goals for Los Angeles,
which saw goaltender Jonathan Quick chased after giving up five goals on 28
shots. Martin Jones stopped all four shots he faced in relief for the Kings.
"It's a series and every chance you get to finish a check, rub a guy out, make
it harder on them, tire them down, it pays dividends later," Kings captain
Dustin Brown said of his team's play at the end of Game 1. "We needed a third
period like that."
Although Quick was pulled from Game 1, the proven postseason performer will
get the start in Game 2. Quick won the Conn Smythe Trophy when the Kings won
the Stanley Cup in 2012 and boasts a 29-22 record and a .927 save percentage
over 51 career playoff games.
In order to even the series at 1-1, Los Angeles needs to pick up a rare win at
San Jose's SAP Center. Including the playoffs, the Kings have lost 11 of their
last 12 games on the road against the Sharks. In last spring's playoff
encounter, the home team won every game, but unlike 2013, San Jose holds home-
ice advantage in this series.
The Kings will host Game 3 on Tuesday, with the fourth meeting set for
Thursday at Staples Center.
04/20 10:39:09 ET