LOS ANGELES, CA – In a tumultuous contest that saw the Kings fall to the Calgary Flames in late, unfortunate fashion, the Kings hurt themselves by taking five consecutive penalties in the second half of tonight’s bout. Calgary’s game-winning tally, off the stick of T.J. Brodie with just :29.2 seconds remaining in regulation, incidentally came while Anze Kopitar was serving a seriously questionable penalty.
Special teams were the storyline throughout tonight’s Pacific Division match-up, as every single goal scored came during a man-advantage situation. All three of Calgary’s tallies came on the power play. The Kings struck gold once on a power play opportunity of their own, and also on the penalty kill – which is their second shorthanded goal of the season.
Tonight’s loss could ultimately break down to a lack of discipline, as the Kings couldn’t find a way to stay out of the penalty box late, getting called for five straight infractions in the final 28 minutes of play.
Calgary was able to execute in the final seconds on a worn-out Kings penalty kill unit, leaving little time for the Kings to take a crack at any sort of rebuttal.
The Kings were successful in the shot department, outshooting Calgary 29-25 with a couple of posts mixed in, but couldn’t get a much-needed third tally past Flames netminder Karri Ramo, who made 27 saves for the win. The Kings were also commanding in the faceoff circle, winning 44 of 69 faceoffs.
Anze Kopitar, who has still yet to score a goal this season, tied for the team lead in shots on goal with four along with Daniel Carcillo, who continues to bring plenty of energy and spark to this roster with another solid performance in his third-line role.
The Kings, now 10 games into the season, hold a 6-4-0 record good for 12 points and good for a 3rd place tie with the Phoenix Coyotes in the Pacific Division. The Coyotes will host the Calgary Flames Tuesday night before they make their first trip of the season to Los Angeles Thursday.
Amidst their most important stretch of games so far this season, the Kings need to recoup quickly and recover mentally before continuing their five-game Pacific Division opponent stretch. It continues Thursday night at STAPLES Center, as the Phoenix Coyotes visit for the first time this season.