The Kings have started their 4 game road trip on the ice of the current Stanley Cup Champions, the Boston Bruins. It was their first game since the coaching change but given the little time to adjust anything not much change has been expected. Nevertheless, the Kings seemed to have much more energy and showed much more emotion than in the previous game against Dallas. On the other hand though, the amount of emotion probably stood in their way of creating sustained pressure or at least a sustained control of the puck. Even though they had a great chance early on, when Gagne fed Penner with a beautiful set up (on which Penner missed an open net), they kept creating turnovers and taking bad penalties. Thus it happened the Bruins had a 1-0 lead after the first period. In the 2nd period the Kings cut down their penalty minutes to none and were given three power play opportunities (including 30 seconds of 5 on 3) but they still failed to score – only hitting the post twice. Instead, at 7:43 of the second period the Bruins jumped off to a two goal lead with a goal from Marchand right from the face-off circle to Quick’s right. In the third period the Kings kept pummeling Rask with pucks yet none went in. Again, it was Boston who managed to score and again from a stick of Marchand who made it 3-0 at 5:35 of the third period. As I said in the beginning of the recap, it was visible the Kings wanted to win this one but their determination seemed to tie down their hands rather than setting their offense loose. They did outshot the Bruins 41 to 22 (20 to 3 in the third) but the amount of scoring chances was rather equal and the most important stat – goals, favored the Boston team.
Yes, Simon failed to score in past 10 games. That definitely isn’t flattering but actually watching his perfomance gives you hope he will break out of this shell soon. He skated on the first line with Kopitar and Penner and was playing really well. Speed, energy, shots (3 at the net, 1 blocked and 1 missed) and solid defensive play. He wasn’t on the ice for any of the Bruins goals, thus remaining even in the +/- stat.