This is only our 2nd of 4 meetings this season with the Nashville Predators. They saved all the games for the end of the season I suppose for traveling reasons. Bernier was in goal for us back in November 2011 at our last match up and Kings won 4-3. The Kings hit the road right after our 4-0 win against the Blackhawks on Saturday. Wow, that was such a fun game to be at. How often do you get to see everyone throwing their hats on the ice at Staples? My throat is still sore from yelling. Jeff Carter stepped on the ice and immediately got his stick on the puck and was noticeable. No points for him yet, but I was amazed at how well he did after just getting traded, on a plane and on the ice all in one day. Can’t wait to see him after he is acclimated to the team. Too bad he didn’t even get a chance to catch up on sleep before he was scooped up on the plane and plays his 2nd game tonight in Nashville. We then fly to Minnesota for a back to back game and the whole team will be able to rest for a few days as we do not play until Saturday vs the Ducks.
Nashville has been a busy bee trading team this season. They traded for Defenseman Hall Gill just two weeks ago and today acquired from Montreal LW Andrei Kostitsyn this morning. Nashville is already in a very good place in the conference and the league at 5th place as the Kings are hanging just out of playoff contention in the 9th slot. A lot of Nashville’s success comes from goalie Pekka Rinne. Rinne is 15-2-3 with a 1.88 goals-against average since Jan. 7. He has started each of Nashville’s last 11 home games, during which it’s gone 9-0-2 and they start 4 games in a row home tonight.
Trade deadline is today at noon pst. and there has been a lot of talk of Brownie going in a trade with Bernier for a scorer. When asked about the rumors Brown said ”I’ve been a King my whole career, and I expect to be a King beyond the next few days, with all the rumors flying around, it’s my responsibility to prepare myself to be the best I can.” After his hat-trick Saturday, I assume he and Bernier will be in our line-up tonight.
A Few Notes:
- Kings are at 34.1% chance of making the playoffs
- The Kings outshot the Blackhawks 30-19, including 14-9 in the second period. If they copy that tonight, they could very well beat the Preds.
- Jonathan Quick made 19 saves for his seventh shutout of the season and his 21st career shutout.
- Brown’s first two goals came on L.A. power plays and his third goal was scored while the Kings were shorthanded.
# 23 Brown– # 11 Kopitar – # 14 Williams
# 74 King– # 10 Richards – # 77 Carter
# 25 Penner – # 28 Stoll – # 22 Lewis
# 13 Clifford – # 24 Fraser – # 71 Nolan
# 7 Scuderi – # 8 Doughty
# 33 Mitchell – # 26 Voynov
# 27 Martinez –# 22 Greene
# 32 Quick
# 45 Bernier
#10 Martin Erat – #12 Mike Fisher – #74 Sergei Kostitsyn
#27 Patric Hornqvist – #11 David Legwand – #57 Gabriel Bourque
#22 Jordin Tootoo – #13 Nick Spaling – #33 Colin Wilson
#24 Matt Halischuk – #15 Craig Smith – #18 Brandon Yip
#20 Ryan Suter – #6 Shea Weber
#75 Hal Gill – #59 Roman Josi
#51 Francis Bouillon – #8 Kevin Klein
#35 Pekka Rinne
#39 Anders Lindback
Go Kings Go!