DEVILS (7-8-5) at KINGS (15-6-1)
7:30PM PT, TV: FOX SPORTS WEST; RADIO: AM 1150
JUNE 11, 2012: There will certainly be a feeling of nostalgia seeing New Jersey’s red and black in the building tonight. The last time the Devils played at STAPLES Center, the Kings clinched their first and only Stanley Cup Championship in franchise history. The Kings hoisted the Cup on that fateful evening of June 11, 2012, ousting New Jersey 6-1 in Game six of the series.
KEEP IT UP, BENNY: Goaltender Ben Scrivens, who tossed a shutout against the Devils last Friday with 26 saves, continues to be rock solid in lieu of Jonathan Quick. In his last four starts, Scrivens is 4-0-0 with a 1.00 GAA, .963 SV% and two shutouts (4GA, 240 min, stopping 105 of 109 shots). Scrivens leads the NHL in GAA (1.35), SV% (.949) and shutouts (3). The Devils are 26th overall in the NHL in scoring, potting a lowly average of 2.10 goals per game. Can Scrivens shut down the Devils again?
WHILE THEY’RE HOT: The Kings are on a four-game win streak, outscoring opponents 11-4 in that span. They’re also on a seven-game point streak (6-0-1), outscoring opponents 20-8. The Kings’ 15-6-1 record (31 points) after 22 games is tied for the second best record through as many games in club history. The 1990-91 roster was 16-5-1, the 2005-06 roster was 15-6-1, the 1980-81 roster was 15-6-1, and the 1974-75 roster was 11-2-9. It’s history in the making.
MOVES LIKE JAGR: Devils forward Jaromir Jagr, at the age of 41, has seemingly visited the fountain of youth, and is leading the New Jersey Devils in scoring this season. Jagr is posting an incredible stat-line that shows eight goals, nine assists, and a +10 rating. He’s scored three goals in New Jersey’s previous two games, including the game-tying goal against the Anaheim Ducks last night with just 1:01 remaining in regulation time. Can the Kings keep the veteran off the score sheet tonight?
DOWNTOWN BROWN: Kings Captain Dustin Brown finally found the back of the net Tuesday night against the Tampa Bay Lightning. It was Brown’s second goal in 17 games, and his first in six games. Brown has an underwhelming eight points (4G, 4A) in 22 games this year. The Kings have stayed afloat with the youth added to the roster, but regular contributions from the veteran names are going to be needed to stabilize it. Can Dustin Brown go back-to-back tonight, and light the lamp against New Jersey.
DON’T REMIND ME: It seems as though the New Jersey Devils are keeping goaltender Martin Brodeur out of the mix when it comes to the Kings. Tonight is the second and final date with the Devils this season, and Cory Schneider is expected to get the call for the Devils in the crease, once again. Brodeur has started both games for New Jersey since Schneider saw the Kings last Friday night, and you can’t complain about it. Schneider is 1-5-3 with a 1.98 GAA and a 9.18 SV% this season. We’ll take it.
GOING FOR A STROLLSY: Jarret Stoll is easing his way back into the Kings lineup, notching six hits, three shots, and one assist in the Kings’ previous two games since being medically cleared to play from his injury. Stoll knows New Jersey goaltender Cory Schneider very well, especially from the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs. Can we reignite the magic tonight?
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