Los Angeles Vs Phoenix game 3
KINGS 2, COYOTES 1: Dwight King continued his magical postseason run, scoring the game winner early in the third period as host Los Angeles took a commanding 3-0 lead in the Western Conference finals.
King played the hero just 1:47 into the frame, skating out from the corner boards on a delayed Phoenix penalty and firing a high shot past netminder Mike Smith’s glove for his fifth goal in five games. The rookie forward scored just five times in 27 regular-season contests.
Penalties hurt Phoenix’s chances at a comeback, with Michal Roszival taking a high-sticking minor just before the five-minute mark and Oliver Ekman-Larsson getting called for cross-checking at 13:22. The Coyotes pulled Smith for an extra attacker with just over a minute remaining, but their final chance to net the equalizer was snuffed out after Radim Vrbata was whistled for slashing the Kings’ Anze Kopitar with 41 seconds left.
Los Angeles held on from there to extend its playoff winning streak to eight games and move within a victory of returning to the Stanley Cup finals for the first time since 1993. Game 4 is set for Sunday afternoon at the Staples Center.
Jonathan Quick stopped 18 shots to preserve the victory.
The teams played a tight-checking first period that saw zero goals and few scoring chances. The Kings had the best opportunity in the opening frame, but Smith made a good save on a Jarrett Stoll chance from in close following a setup by King.
The teams shook off the shackles to open the second period. Phoenix struck first at 1:03, with Daymond Langkow escaping on a partial breakaway and firing a shot that trickled between Quick’s pads.
Kopitar answered just over two minutes later with one of the nicest goals of the series. The star forward broke in alone and deked out Smith before beating him between the pads with a backhand shot for his 10th point in the last six games.
Tickets for the Kings Vs Coyotes at the Staples Center Sunday at 12:00pm are still available.
Kings Vs Coyotes
The NHL has quite a surprise on their hands with the Western Conference Finals as it features 2 teams nobody really expected to be here several months ago. Your two teams are the 8th seeded Los Angeles Kings and the 3 seeded Phoenix Coyotes.
Entering the post season the Kings finished only 2 points behind the Coyotes but thanks to league rules that state a division winner gets a top 3 seed, the Coyotes leapfrogged over several teams with more total points and were able to earn home ice advantage for the first round of the playoffs.
The Kings lost their final 2 games of the regular season to the San Jose Sharks knocking them down into the 8th seed and giving them the task of having to knock off the top seeded Vancouver Canucks to advance to the second round.
The Kings started the playoffs red hot as they took the first 3 games of the series from the Canucks to take a 3-0 series lead. In game 4 however, the Kings stumbled as they lost to the Canucks to make the series 3-1. In game 4 the Kings were able to rebound thanks to a Jarret Stoll overtime goal which gave the Kings the series victory over the Canucks and propelled them to the second round to take on the second seeded St. Louis Blues.
Just like in the first round, the Kings had to open the series on the road and once again won both games on the opponents ice sending them back to L.A. with a 2 games to none lead. In game 3 the Kings were able to excite the home crowd as they won again, this time by a score of 4-2 to take a 3-0 series lead for the second straight round. Unlike in round 1 where the Kings were unable to close out the series on home ice, the Kings were able to defeat the Blues 2-1 in game 4 to send the Staples Center crowd into euphoria and advancing the Kings into the third round of the playoffs and a date with the Phoenix Coyotes.
During the regular season these 2 teams split the series at 3 games a-piece with the most recent game being a 5-4 shootout victory for the Coyotes back on February 21st.
Both of the goaltenders in this upcoming series have been red hot during the postseason as Jonathan Quick leads all active goalies in playoff GAA right now with a 1.55 GAA and .949 save percentage while Mike Smith has been almost as good sporting a 1.85 GAA with a save percentage of .946.
While it is expected that this series will be low scoring, it needs to be pointed out that the Kings are averaging 3 goals per game in the playoffs while the Coyotes are averaging 2.64 goals per game, so a high scoring game is not entirely out of the question. With the stellar goaltending however it would not be surprising at all to see one game end 1-0 and the following game be a 5-4 finale.
As of now it is unknown when the series will start, but you can bet that it will be an exciting matchup and ultimately will send a team from the Pacific Division to the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time since 2007 when the Anaheim Ducks represented the Pacific Division en route to their Stanley Cup victory
COYOTES 5, KINGS 4 (SO): Ray Whitney and Mikkel Boedker scored in the shootout as host Phoenix overcame a 3-0 deficit to move into a first-place tie with the San Jose Sharks.
Whitney opened the shootout with a goal and Dustin Brown briefly leveled it in the second round. Boedker then used a backhand to beat Jonathan Quick before Jack Johnson’s attempt sailed wide right.
Radim Vrbata had two goals and an assist and Shane Doan scored twice to help Phoenix win its sixth in a row at home and improve to 8-0-1 overall in February.
Vrbata leveled the score with 2:27 left in regulation on the Coyotes’ third power-play goal of the night with his team-best 30th of the season. Vrbata has seven goals and five assists his past nine games.
The scoring-challenged Kings, who were coming off back-to-back shutouts, exploded for three goals in the first 15 minutes. Drew Doughty, Andrei Loktionov and Brown all got in the scoring act against goaltender Mike Smith.
The Coyotes clawed their way back in the second, taking advantage of penalties for a pair of power-play goals. Vrbata scored 50 seconds into the frame and Doan followed suit five minutes later with a wrist shot from close range to cut it to 3-2.
Williams converted a power-play tally of his own midway through the second before Doan was at it again, scoring from nearly the same spot to make it a one-goal contest.
GAME NOTEBOOK: Kings forward Jarret Stoll returned to the lineup after missing four games with a lower-body injury. … Los Angeles forward Kyle Clifford was sent to the locker room with a five-minute major for crosschecking Keith Yandle midway through the third, leading to Vrbata’s tying goal. … Smith is unbeaten in his last eight starts.
Upcoming Games – The Coyotes will play Vancouver which was rescheduled from 02/13/2012 at the Jobing.com Arena.
The Los Angeles Kings will face the Chicago Blackhawks on Sat Jan 25th at the Staples Center. Tickets for the Blackhawks Vs Kings are onsale now.