Heading into action tonight most of the focus was on number 10 for the Kings due to the debuting Marco Sturm. When things were over, 23 was the number of the night. Dustin Brown had four points (2g, 2a) and Jonathan Quick made 23 saves.
Back on April 1 of last season Brown had the first four point night of his career, as part of a hat trick against the visiting Vancouver Canucks. Tonight in Colorado, his play was anything but a joke.
He looked mean, hungry and full of confidence. It was the best overall game he’s played in quite some time.
And the best part is, you could probably say that about half a dozen players on the team – including his linemate Anze Kopitar.
The highly talented number 11 was THIS close to netting what would have been perhaps the highlight goal of the year, passing the puck back to himself between his own legs. Even without it though, his performance was what the Kings wish they received more often – dazzling plays at both ends of the ice.
Colorado’s roster featured red-hot Matt Duchene and Tomas Fleischmann, the NHL’s top two picks among the three stars of the week. The Avs hadn’t been shutout all season. They were also riding a six-game winning streak and came into the game as the NHL’s highest scoring team.
In the Kings corner, well – they entered the contest having alternated wins and losses over the last six games.
It all went out the window when Rob Scuderi scored the first goal of the game. That’s usually a sign something freaky is about to go down. Not only was it his first of the season, but first in nearly 200 games.
The above cast took over from there – with one notable exception. It was the Avs they were playing, so, Brad Richardson had to get in on the fun. He did, putting his fourth goal of the year past Craig Anderson in the second. That’s Brad 4, Avs 0 with one game to go.
A solid performance and a nice way to end their five game roadtrip.
One more thing – last time Willie Mitchell was out of the line-up the Kings went 1-5 on the road. So far this time they’re 2-1.
But, what about Sturm, you ask? Nearly 12 minutes of ice time spread over 16 shifts. One shot on goal. He looked fine for his first night back. Now let’s just see how long coach Terry Murray leaves him on the fourth line.
Podcast with Ian Laperriere – former Kings and Avs forward
Counted Out Too Quickly? – feature piece on Jonathan Quick