They were both on the ice to start the game and Stoll took an interference penalty 25 seconds in, forcing Clifford to sit and watch while the Kings killed off the Nashville power play.
Coach Terry Murray put the same line out to start the second period and 20 seconds later Stoll was whistled for tripping, again putting Clifford on the bench while the Kings penalty killing unit went to work.
All total, the Kings had five penalties in the first two periods and Clifford was on the ice for three of them. Even being one winger down for most of the game (Scott Parse left injured halfway through the first period), Clifford played less than two and half minutes in the final period.
Was something wrong?
“There were quite a few of those special teams situations coming up (in the third period),” said Murray. “Everything else is fine. It was just the way it unfolded. It’s not because of something he did or any other issue. He was good, he’s healthy and that’s just the way it happened.”
Interestingly enough, there was actually fewer time spent on the power play or penalty kill in the third, yet Clifford saw the least amount of ice time in that stanza.
Here’s one more thing that stood out in last night’s game – the Kings had 15 shots on goal in the first period (one of their best totals of the year), then 11 in the second and just four in the third period. That’s a trend that’s been popping up a lot this season. Click here to see what Murray had to say about that observation a few weeks ago.