The Kings have scored first in two of the three playoff games with the Sharks.
And they have a 1-1 record to show for it.
Still, when game four gets underway tonight, the coaches, the players and the fans will all be looking for the Kings to score first and take control early. They’ll need to win the game to send the series back to San Jose tied 2-2.
So, who tends to score first for the Kings?
Here’s a breakdown of the top performers this season…
Player – number of times scored first (team record in those games)
Justin Williams – ten times (eight wins, two losses)
Dustin Brown – ten times (5-5)
Anze Kopitar – nine times (7-2)
Ryan Smyth – nine times (5-4)
Jarret Stoll – seven times (6-1)
Wayne Simmonds – six times (4-2)
Michal Handzus – five times (0-5)
* Removing shootout wins, the following four would be adjusted to:
Dustin Brown – nine times (4-5)
Ryan Smyth – eight times (4-4)
Justin Williams – seven times (5-2)
Jarret Stoll – four times (3-1)
41-regular season home games
Ryan Smyth – six times (four wins, 2 losses)
Dustin Brown – five times (3-2)
Jarret Stoll – five times (5-0)
Justin Williams – four times (4-0)
Anze Kopitar – four times (3-1)
Michal Handzus – four times (0-4)
Wayne Simmonds – four times (3-1)
* Three full-time roster players didn’t have a ‘first goal’ during the regular season – Matt Greene, Jack Johnson and Kevin Westgarth. However, Johnson scored the first goal in playoff game #2
* In the nine games vs. the Sharks this season (six regular season and two playoff games), seven different players have scored the first goal for the Kings. Overall, the Kings were 4-5 in those games.
* Only Dustin Brown has scored first twice vs. the Sharks, once in the regular season and once in the playoffs – the Kings went 1-1 in those games.
So, who will score first for the Kings tonight?