Thursday, December 29, 2011

12/28/11: Kings 2, Blackhawks 0

I had absolutely zero faith in the Los Angeles Kings to win against the Chicago Blackhawks IN Chicago.  As I mentioned in my game preview, I honestly could not remember the last time the Kings beat the Blackhawks.  After this game was over, Bob Miller mentioned that the last time the Kings beat the Blackhawks in Chicago was almost 4 years ago to this day! Unreal.  And including games played in Los Angeles, the Blackhawks had won the previous 7 matches.  No wonder I dread watching the Kings play the 'Hawks.

The game started out as I had expected, with the Kings barely able to scrape anything together.  The team chemistry was way off, the passing was atrocious, the rushes into the offensive zone were futile, and the power play looked no better.  And then I saw this on the Kings bench:

(AP Photo)
Oh jeeeeeez, Sutter.  That suit just screams '1975'.
Someone get this guy a stylist;
he's the coach of a  professional sports team
in Los Angeles for crying out loud.

The only reason the Kings were still in this game after the first period was because of Jonathan Quick, whose play only got exponentially better as the game went on.  Also, it helped that the Blackhawks never seemed to catch a break, which coincidentally, was the story for the, majority of Kings' season so far.  But Quick......holy moly, it's breathtaking, heart-stopping, jaw dropping to watch him when that kid gets on a roll. (And yes, I may be exaggerating just the slightest, but it's only because I don't think Quick gets the praise he deserves nearly as much as other netminders.)

(Bill Smith/Getty Images)
Quick almost got a kiss from close.
Other notable moments from the game:

  • Trent Hunter scored the first, and eventually game-winning, goal. (I suppose I'll stop bitching about him for awhile....);
  • Speaking of Trent Hunter, his dad looks like a cooler, less annoying, less douchey version of Pierre McGuire; 
  • I couldn't help but notice that the Kings players' dads were not in a suite....what's up with that LA Kings management?  Is the team that broke after signing Doughty? Stay classy, AEG;
  • Mike Richards needs to take penalty shot/shootout lessons from Jarret Stoll considering he's 0-for-2 THIS season and 0-for-7 all-time; 
  • Bob Miller interviewed Kyle Clifford's dad during the 2nd intermission and I don't know what he said because I was so distracted by how freaking HUGE he is!  Clifford's dad was remarkably larger than Bob Miller; He looked like he ate Jim Fox and was sizing up Bob.  He isn't grossly obese or anything, just a very, very large man.  Even Bob said, "I see where [Kyle] got his size."
  • I enjoyed seeing how unfazed the fathers were when their sons scored (although I have no doubt Jack's dad would have been running up and down the aisles giving everyone a high-five if his son scored). I guess after you've seen your kid play probably thousands of games and seen them score a lot, another goal, even if it does occur in the NHL in your presence, just isn't that big of a deal.
So it's off to Winnipeg!  I have no idea what to expect from either the Kings or the Jets.  Will the Kings be able to continue this points streak? Only if Sutter wears another brown plaid suit.  Maybe on Thursday he can pair it with a burnt orange dress shirt.

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