You know how you can tell a King’s fan from all other hockey fans? They’re bald. That’s right, they have no hair. We slowly and surely have been pulling it out little by little this season. We don’t need Rocco’s tattoo balm as our sponsor, we need a sunscreen company. Can you see it? All the fans milling around at LA Live before a game with no hair? Laughing together at The Yardhouse tipsy and bald, eating at Rock N Fish packed close at the tables with their shiny domes, playing a little pickup game in the street both parents and kids rubbing their heads for warmth. How about as the camera pulls back in the arena and 18 thousand plus fans all look like Yul Brenner in a King’s uniform? It’s happening I tell you and “plink” there goes the last strand as we approach tonight’s game against Calgary.
This is the final meeting and I feel the most important game. This one lets us know if we really have a chance at making the playoffs. At first I was mad saying “well, if they can’t do it without all this maneuvering for a spot, then they don’t deserve it!” But really? I want them to make the playoffs. I want to go to the playoff games with my rally towels – the atmosphere is crazy! So why is this game so important? Well we have 86 points and are in 9th place. Calgary has 85 points and is in 11th place. If they win they jump over us and our chances of making the playoffs drops by almost 20%. If we win, we not only will gain in percentage of chances but we have one more game to play than Phoenix who is just one spot above us and has one more point. That’s why it’s an important game. Started pacing yet?
The Kings lost the last two games and I think we all know about them so we don’t have to rehash here. But what about Calgary? You know when we were on our 6 game winning streak? Calgary was on a 5 game losing streak at the same time. They helped us by beating Dallas the other night, but fact remains they have a very slim chance of even making the playoffs. When asked about their chances, Tanguay said, “We’re going to give it our all, there’s no holding back. We want to be in. We’ve worked so hard for the past two months, played some very good hockey. Haven’t been as lucky as we’d like to be, but maybe this luck will come our way the last few games.” So Calgary still wants in and we want in. Heart stopping game tonight folks. Neither of us want to walk away. The Kings have proven when they come out strong, fast and shooting at the first minute of the game, we usually win.
I hope Sutter starts the Kopi line first. I know he can be lumbering up the ice sometimes and it drives us batty, but fact is Kopitar can jump start the game and often with great results. Starting line 2 with Richards, Carter and King hasn’t done us any good at all so far. Stick with what works. Speaking of that, Quick is in goal and Drewiski and Westgarth are healthy scratches. Over at LAKingsInsider.com, Hammond stated that Richardson was off the ice so it seems like a game time decision on whether Richardson plays tonight. I hope so. We could use his speed and tenacity.
A Few Notes:
- Kings have a 62.2% chance of making playoffs as of noon pst.
- Quick has won five of his last seven starts.
- When playing on Wednesday, the Kings are 7-3.
- In their last five games (through 3/25), the Kings out shot Anaheim, Nashville, San Jose, St Louis, and Boston by a collective 167-98 at 5-on-5.
- King’s defense is allowing just 2.1 goals/game (2nd in the NHL).
# 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
#40 Alex Tanguay – #93 Mike Cammalleri – #12 Jarome Iginla
#20 Curtis Glencross – #13 Olli Jokinen – #25 David Moss
#22 Lee Stempniak – #18 Matt Stajan – #10 Blake Comeau
#16 Tom Kostopoulos – #19 Blair Jones – #15 Tim Jackman
#4 Jay Bouwmeester – #44 Chris Butler
#5 Mark Giordano – #23 Scott Hannan
#33 Anton Babchuk – #21 Clay Wilson
#34 Miikka Kiprusoff
#35 Henrik Karlsson
Go Kings Go!