Awesome win. They really put the clamps down on in the 3rd period. The best way to keep them from scoring is to keep the puck for the majority of the last 20 minutes.
On another note, reading all those names of players from the past decade or so is just mind blowing. I remember just hoping that one or two of those dumpster dives would work out. Erik Rasmussen, Donald Audette, Jaroslav Bednar and Steve Heinze and the like. Thank goodness we have a legit GM now and ownership allowed him to do a full rebuild.
Well, was at the game tonight and I saw you Reinhold just didn't get a chance to say hi.
Anyway, bottom line is after the first few minutes of the first period I thought to myself "here it is, the run is over." Phoenix impressed me with the way they took it to the Kings. People around me were commenting how Phoenix was trying to spread the Kings with the long passes; indeed, they seemed to have found a way to get away from the central tight checking/back checking issues they faced the first two games.
I was so glad to get through that first period, only to see a pretty bad defensive shift by Richards allowing that first goal by Phoenix to go in so early in the second.
Kopi's answer two minutes later turned the game. You could almost hear and feel the air going out of the Coyotes' balloon at that point.
The last four minutes of the game was some of the most dominating hockey I ever witnessed. Basically, the Kings knew if they possessed the puck without a whistle that Doan could not get out of the penalty box. He was in there from 14:46 to until 19:04, a good solid four minutes and change. Voynov, in particular, impressed me with his offensive puck handling in that last two minutes.
Bottom line, I really felt the Kings were vulnerable in this game, and in particular the first 30 minutes when Phoenix was bringing it, but somehow they turned it around and had a really good 3rd period.
Great gut-check win.
Great insight about Doan. Good catch.
I expected the Coyotes to throw the kitchen sink at the Kings. They did. Wasn't good enough.
The Kings players had a VERY spirited locker room discussion between periods 2 and 3. Don't know the details of what was said, but it was the players, not Sutter, and obviously it did the trick.
Not really worried about a long layoff, we've been having long layoffs since the playoffs started.
This is a veteran group with sprinkles of some smart young players. Sutter, Greene, Stoll, Scuderi, Richie, Carter, Williams, Penner won't let this team take its foot off the gas pedal. Most of the vets want to taste the Cup and they know its their ultimate goal and won't be satisfied until it is achieved.
Stoll got electric player of the game for TSN. He was the best King on the ice tonight, imo. I'm surprised with the lack of attention he got in the thread. Obviously all Kings have played beyond what they are used to. He was just another level tonight.
Thanks...where did you hear about the locker room discussion? Would like to know the source...it makes sense though. They played worlds apart in the third.
It was a reporter, Steve Hartman from KTLA who asked Sutter about it. He heard something about it being very animated between the second and 3rd, which Sutter replied that it wasn't him. When asked who it was and would he tell them, he said "No, it's their room"
Can't sleep...my ears are still ringing from Staples Cetner ...and I'm still up thinking about how well this team is playing. It's like our style of play but executed to perfection. Even when the other team pushes, our system stifles them enough to break up their chances. And we only grew stronger as the game went along.
This is a good time to enjoy right now. Looking back at all those names everyone is posting, it's amazing to think how far we've come since the 90's. Win or lose, we are playing at another level, and no one has the answer. We're breaking the spirit of every team we encounter. Sunday can't come soon enough.