For the first 20 minutes of the game last night, the St. Louis Blues showed why they’re the number one team in the NHL. They won every battle across the ice, in both zones. It was a clinic, as one person from the Kings put it.
LA coach Darryl Sutter shared that view, saying “We weren’t happy with our first period and I’m sure they weren’t happy with their second period.”
However, even after another 25 minutes of play, things were still tied 0-0. With the game’s outcome set to be decided in a shootout, Jonathan Quick made more saves than his counterpart and the Blues came out on the losing end 1-0.
After the game, here’s what goalie Brian Elliott had to say…
“It was a tight game. We knew that coming into it [the game] would pretty much be like a playoff game. [The Kings] are playing for their playoff lives, so we just tried to create our own storm, create our own offense. It was… a hard fought game. It came down to a shootout. We have just got to keep working…We all played together. We played for each other for a full 60 minutes. We just have to build on that and we’ll get our scoring chances that we’ll start to bury again… [The Kings are] going to have to play 100 percent the rest of the season to solidify their spot. They’re going to play like that the rest of the year, I’m assuming. We got a point here but we can’t be happy with it, but we have just got to put it in our back pocket and move onto the next game…It’s a hard fought game. It’s always disappointing when you don’t get the two points , but when you come here on the road it’s a tough building to play [in]. They’re playing well. We have just got to take that point and move on and get ready for the next game because it’s just going to be as tough as it was tonight.”
Blues coach Ken Hitchcock was not made available for comment.
LA finished the season series 3-1 vs. St. Louis.
From watching the game last night at Staples, the Kings play during the first period was pretty sloppy. The second period was more pressing from the Kings side of it; they just couldn’t bury their chances. I think, in the third, we saw both teams play put too much emphasis on ‘not getting caught’ on an out-numbered attack, or not forcing themselves to create a turnover in their own zone. Each team really tightened up their game in the neutral zone, forcing many turnovers and allowing very little penetration for the puck carrier. The chances were slightly better for the Blues, but Quick made a highlight reel save to keep the game knotted at 0-0. You could see the respect each team had for the other, even from the upper 300’s. It was a great game. The Kings beat the best team in the league. The boys are now first in the division, third in the conference and it was a very useful practice in anticipation for a little playoff hockey- should they make it. GKG!