7 Things To Watch For Tonight On Fox Sports West
KINGS (20-7-4) at MAPLE LEAFS (16-12-3)
4:30PM PT, TV: FOX SPORTS WEST; RADIO: AM 1150
IN POWER: The Kings kicked off their road trip last night with six goals that saw 11 different players record a point. The Kings also put a dent in their power play woes, as Jake Muzzin buried the Kings’ first man-advantage tally in their last 32 tries. It was undoubtedly one of the more prolific offensive showings of the season, but with three games in the next four days, it can’t be streaky.
ONTARIO REIGN: The Kings haven’t lost a game in Toronto, Ontario in over 11 years, dating back to November 12, 2002. The Kings last played the Maple Leafs at Air Canada Center on December 19, 2011, where they won 3-2 in a shootout. Dustin Brown scored the Kings’ second goal in Toronto that night, and ended the affair with a game-clinching SO beauty off the cross-bar and down to beat James Reimer.
FULL CIRCLE: Tonight could present the most intriguing goaltender matchup of the season for both the Kings and Maple Leafs. Since the trade between these two clubs that sent Jonathan Bernier to Toronto in exchange for Ben Scrivens and forward Matt Frattin on June 23, these two teams haven’t crossed paths. Now, in the first meeting since, there’s a solid chance Ben Scrivens (7-2-4 .943 SV% 1.56 GAA 2 SO) and Jonathan Bernier (9-8-2 .929 SV% 2.49 GAA 1 SO) will face each other in their respective creases. Grab your popcorn.
FULL CIRCLE? : The last time the Kings played the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Center on December 19, 2011, it was the last game the Kings would play before Darryl Sutter took the helm. John Stevens was heading the Kings bench for the final time, and went 2-2-0 in four games as the Kings’ interim Head Coach after Terry Murray was fired. Since then, Darryl Sutter is 72-36-20 heading this club – a perfect .750 W%. Plus, a Stanley Cup.
SWEET SIXTEEN: The Kings recent 16-game tear (11-1-4) is the result of outstanding defensive play and goaltending, and certainly reaches out to the franchise’s outstanding development of youth prospects. In this 16-game stretch, the Kings have never allowed more than two goals in regulation time – it’s a franchise record. They also haven’t allowed a first period goal in those last 16 games, and have outscored opponents 41-20.
KILL IT: One of the mainstays for success this season for the Kings has been the strength and consistency of the penalty kill unit. The Kings are fourth-best in the NHL with a 86.3% success rate, and have killed off 24 of their last 25 penalties dating back to November 27. The Toronto Maple Leafs, though, have the fourth-best power play unit in the NHL, donning an attractive 23.7% success rate. Special teams could be the standout battle tonight.
LOCAL 200: Entering tonight’s game in Toronto, Drew Doughty is just one point away from recording his 200th point of his NHL career. Doughty was born in London, Ontario, which is just two hours West of Toronto. Can Doughty record his 200th career NHL point tonight in front of his local family and friends?
WE’RE DOING IT LIVE: Catch KINGS LIVE at 4:00P on FOX SPORTS WEST, followed with Bob and Jim on the live play-by-play call at 4:30P for puck-drop at Air Canada Center in downtown Toronto, Ontario.