In a game that was originally supposed to be played in late April, the Kings found a way to lose in early March. As they’ve done quite a few times recently, LA trailed by multiple goals in the game, yet found a way to make things interesting in the third period. In the end, Arizona defeated LA 3-2, despite being outshot by the Kings 42-23.
After the game, Kings defenseman Drew Doughty shared the following thoughts:
On not being able to tie the game against Antti Raanta in the third period
I guess so. We didn’t like a lot of things about our second period. The two PK goals are both preventable, the one is my fault, I got to block that shot. We were sloppy in the second. We weren’t connecting on passes; we’d have opportunities for 4-on-2 or 3-on-2 rushes and we would throw it in the feet, the puck would bounce, and then that lost out opportunity. We lost the game in the second, I don’t think it was about first and third not scoring. If we scored another one we would have tied it up, but it was about the second.
On the second period being a good example of what happens when the team can’t roll all four lines
I guess so. Every coach says they want to do that. When it comes down to it, they’re going to put their top guys out there in the clutch moments. We want to roll four lines. When we’re rolling four lines and three pairs, we’re a good team, a very good team. We’re hard to play against, we have lots of energy. I can’t even remember, there was a bunch power plays in the second, wasn’t there? That was an issue. Some guys had to sit out and not get a shift for a long time so we couldn’t keep rolling.
On what the team did well in the third period to stay in the game and play from behind well
It’s easy to play from behind. It’s not easy to win playing from behind, but it’s easy to dominate the play when you are playing from behind. Every team that has to lead, their tendency is to sit back. When we have the lead we kind of do it too. We sit back, we let the other team take it to us, we kind of stop, they kind of stop making plays and start flipping the puck out just to be safe. We did have a good third period, but as much as I’d like to give us all the credit, I think they’re sitting back a little bit.
On if the Kings change their power play approach when leading vs. trailing in a game
No, things stay the same. When you’re down and you have a late power play you want to think that the urgency goes up, but every time you have a power play opportunity the urgency should go up, it doesn’t matter what time of the game it is. I know everyone that is on the power play are super fortunate and really enjoy being on the power play, so we go out there with the same amount of urgency every time, even though it may not show it. We don’t change much, just keep going with what we’re doing, especially if things are going well. If things are going bad, we’d probably change something, but today it was pretty good.
— Eric (@Kingsgifs) March 4, 2021
On his four power play goals this season, and if he’s doing anything differently
To be honest, I think it’s just because I finally got on the the flank. I’ve been playing the middle of the power play for a long time, my entire career. I finally got to go on the left hashmark opposite Kopi. The guys are just making good passes to me. I’m just shooting it and things are going in. Brownie is doing a good job screening AI, he’ll get a stick on some in the middle. Then, Kopi and juice are shooting and passing very well. I’m really not doing anything different, minus being able to play that half-wall for the first time.
More postgame comments linked below.
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Lead photo via Getty Images / LA Kings