Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 05/27/14 at 09:18 AM ET
KINGS STORM PAST BLACKHAWKS, MOVE WITHIN ONE WIN OF FINAL
The Kings raced to a 4-0 lead, aided by three goals in a seven-minute span of the first period, and held on to move within one victory of their second trip to the Stanley Cup Final in the past three years.
* Since trailing 2-0 in the second period of Game 2, the Kings have outscored the Blackhawks 15-5 en route to three consecutive wins. The Kings also have found the back of the net in eight consecutive periods since facing that deficit.
* The Kings improved to 14-4 (.778) in their last 18 postseason games at STAPLES Center (dating to June 11, 2012), including a 5-3 mark in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
* The Kings went 2-for-3 with the man-advantage and now have scored seven power-play goals (in 17 opportunities, 41.2%) over their last five games. They rank third in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and first among remaining clubs, with a 26.7% overall conversion rate with the man-advantage (16-for-60).
* Four Kings recorded multi-point games: Drew Doughty (1-1—2), Jake Muzzin (1-1—2), Anze Kopitar (0-2—2) and Justin Williams (0-2—2).
* Marian Gaborik scored his League-leading 10th goal of the playoffs (18 GP), surpassing his career high of nine established in 2003 (18 GP with MIN). Only Wayne Gretzky (15 G in 24 GP in 1993) and Luc Robitaille (12 G in 12 GP 1991) have posted more goals in a single postseason in Kings history.
* Kopitar leads the NHL with a career-high 17 assists and 22 points, and now has registered at least one point in 15 of the team’s 18 playoff games. Only Gretzky (15-25—40 in 24 GP in 1993) and Tomas Sandstrom (8-17—25 in 24 GP in 1993) have collected more points in a single postseason in Kings history (two others tied with 22).
* Since Dec. 21, Kopitar has been held pointless in consecutive games just once: April 3-5. He has 23-40—63 in 64 games in that span (regular season and playoffs).
* ICYMI: Kopitar was mic’d up for both of his assists in Game 4: on goals by Gaborik and Doughty.
* The line of Tanner Pearson (1-0—1, +1), Jeff Carter (0-1—1, +1) and Tyler Toffoli (0-1—1, +1) totaled three points and a +3 rating. All three players are riding five-game point streaks, combining for 22 points and a +16 rating in that span – Carter: 5-6—11, +6; Pearson: 2-4—6, +6; Toffoli: 3-2—5, +4.
* The Kings now have the top four scorers in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs: Kopitar (5-17—22), Carter (8-12—20), Gaborik (10-6—16) and Williams (6-9—15) . . .
* . . . as well as the two highest-scoring rookies: Toffoli (6-5—11) and Pearson (3-8—11).
* With two points, Doughty (3-11—14) also moved ahead of P.K. Subban (5-8—13) for the most points by a defenseman in the postseason. Doughty’s 14 points are two shy of his career high, set in 20 games in 2012 (4-12—16).
* Muzzin now has five goals in the playoffs (18 GP), tied with Subban for the League lead among defensemen. That also matches his total from the regular season (76 GP).
* Dustin Brown scored his fourth career postseason game-winning goal and first since May 13, 2012 at PHX (Game 1 of CF).
DID YOU KNOW?
* The Kings lead a best-of-seven series 3-1 for the fifth time in franchise history. They are 4-0 in their past four such series, three of which came in 2012 en route to the team capturing its first Stanley Cup.
* The Blackhawks are facing a 3-1 deficit in a best-of-seven series for the 13th time in franchise history. They are 1-11 all-time in that scenario, but their lone win came in their most recent such series: the 2013 CSF vs. DET.
Blackhawks forward Bryan Bickell scored his seventh goal of the postseason, one behind Jonathan Toews for the team lead. Since 2012, only Jeff Carter (22) has more goals in the Stanley Cup Playoffs than Bickell (18) . . . After going 44-for-48 (91.7%) on the penalty kill in their first 13 games of the postseason, the Blackhawks have yielded five power-play goals (in 10 times shorthanded, 50.0%) over their last three outings . . . The Kings improved to 7-0 when scoring four or more goals in the playoffs (4-7 when recording three or fewer) . . . The Blackhawks fell to 0-7 when allowing four or more goals in the postseason (9-0 when yielding three or fewer) . . . The Capitals hired Barry Trotz as their head coach and promoted Brian MacLellan to senior vice president and general manager. Trotz becomes the 17th head coach in franchise history and joins the Capitals following 15 seasons behind the bench in Nashville. MacLellan becomes the sixth general manager in club history after spending the past 13 seasons in the organization, the last seven as the team’s assistant general manager . . . The Sabres signed forward Nicolas Deslauriers to a two-year contract . . .
SNEAK PEEK AT TUESDAY’S ACTION
All Times Eastern
NY Rangers @ Montreal, Game 5, NYR lead 3-1, 8:00 p.m., NBCSN, CBC, RDS
the above information was provided by the NHL PR department
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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