Home Hockey What Went Wrong, Don’t Crown the Kings

What Went Wrong, Don’t Crown the Kings

by P.J. Cox
After three wins at home, the L.A. Kings dominate the Blues to end their five-game homestead with a loss. The first period summed up in one word: goaliesJake Allen started for the Blues after winning his last three  The King’s backup goalie, Jhones Enroth, came up big.
About 40 seconds into the game, Alex Pietrangelo took a slap-shot that pinged off the post. Allen stood tall through several scoring chances in the first, including Anze Kopitar‘s wide-open net.
At the other end of the ice, Kyle Brodziak got robbed by Enroth. Pietrangelo worked the puck up the left side to Alexander Steen at the point. Steen took a shot with a rebound stopped on Brodziak’s stick to the right of the crease. A subtle bobble gave Enroth enough time to dive across the crease and put a piece on the puck before it shot off of the post.
Although Allen stopped the great scoring chances of the Kings, he can be blamed for the first goal of the game. With 4:08 left in the second period, Jeff Carter scored on the power-play. Drew Doughty faked a shot and slid the puck to Carter by Allen’s right side. Looking for a pass, Carter caught Allen cheating and his shot caromed off Allen’s back into the net. 1-0 Kings at the end of the second.

Tyler Toffoli entered with a 4-on2. Toffoli dropped the puck back to Brayden McNabb, who passed it to Tanner Pearson. Pearson put it past Allen with 4:33 left in regulation.

Trevor Lewis put the icing on the cake with a empty net goal, ending it 3-0 Kings.

But why did we lose that game?

Well, we only had 24 shots on Enroth, which is almost ten less than the Kings had on Allen. SOG aside, we couldn’t finish the few scoring chances we had. Even Vladimir Tarasenko couldn’t sneak one past Enroth on a breakaway. The reason for our lost may not be as simple as that, but we should have had at least one with the goal-scorers on our team. Jake Allen is the only player on the Blues who truly showed up for the 60 minutes of play. He was great for three periods, earning him the second star of the game.

Also, Hitch said he would have to be flexible with the lines this game. I understand that a coach might need to change a line if some guys aren’t working well together, but it almost seems like this was an excuse for, “Uhhhh, I forgot we had a game tonight” or “My dog ate my lineup”. The STL line (Steen-Tarasenko-Lehtera) was the starting line…. And the only line that didn’t split up (that much) during the game.

Either way, all of the Blues need to show up against the Chicago Blackhawks tonight, who were beat 4-2 by the Kings on Monday. Catch it on NBCSN’s Rivalry Night and follow @bluesbuzzblog on Twitter.

(Photo via Blues)

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