KINGS (29-18-6) at SHARKS (34-12-6)
7:00PM PT, TV: NBC SPORTS NETWORK; RADIO: AM 1150
NORTH BOUND: The Kings are in San Jose tonight for their fourth meeting with the Sharks this season. The Kings are 2-0-1 against San Jose so far this season, winning 4-3 in OT on October 30, falling 3-2 in a SO on November 27, and winning 4-1 on December 19. The Kings will finish up their season series with the Sharks on April 3, when they return to San Jose’s SAP Center for the fifth and final matchup.
TANK DEPOSIT: Mired in a five-game losing streak, which is the second of it’s kind in the past 30 days for this roster, the Kings will skate in a building that has been anything but hospitable to them as of late. Dating back to April 4, 2011, the Kings have lost seven straight regular season games at San Jose’s SAP Center, going 0-3-4 in that span. Can the Kings snap their five-game skid, as well as their losing streak at SAP Center tonight in San Jose?
The last time the Kings won a regular season game in San Jose, you’d have to backtrack to December 27, 2010, when the Kings pulled off a 4-0 beauty.
Prior to that win, the Kings had averaged 3.71 goals per game in their previous seven games. Their 4-1 win on that late-December night in San Jose chimed them in with 30 goals scored in eight contests.
The Kings may need a prayer for that type of offense tonight.
GOAL DIGGER: The Kings have failed to score more than two goals in six of their past eight games (2-5-1), and have just one goal in their previous two contests. Against San Jose this season, the Kings have scored a combined 10 regulation goals, pocketing five of the possible six points available for the taking in those dates with the Sharks. Can the Kings find their offense tonight against San Jose?
THE LAST TIME WE WERE THERE: The Kings last played at San Jose’s SAP Center on November 27, when they fell to the Sharks 3-2 in a contest that extended to an eight-round shootout.
Jeff Carter scored on the Kings’ first shot of the evening :18 seconds into play, and Drew Doughty extended the game to OT and a shootout with a game-tying third-period goal.
Three Kings scored in the shootout that went eight rounds, but it wasn’t enough to topple the Sharks.
THE BANK’S OPEN AT THE TANK
STREAKING: While the Kings are stumbling into tonight with a five-game losing streak, the Sharks are flourishing with a six-game winning streak. The Kings have struggled mightily in the offensive department in January, averaging just 1.83 goals per game in 12 contests, going 4-6-2. The Kings, though, have averaged 3.33 goals per game against the Sharks this season. Can they tally up the scoreboard tonight, ending San Jose’s winning streak while putting an end to their five-game skid?
PURPLE DAZE: The Kings’ last win in San Jose came during Game 5 of the NHL’s 2011 Western Conference Quarterfinals on April 23, 2011, when Kyle Clifford buried the game-winning goal to extend the series to a sixth game. The Kings donned their purple uniforms for the final time that night at the then-known HP Pavilion.
CAPTAIN SPEAKING: “We’ve gotta bear down on our chances. We’ve gotta start finding points.” Dustin Brown is living through the Kings’ current offensive woes first-hand, recording a measly three points (3G) in the Kings’ previous 15 contests. Can Brown break his scoring slump, and the roster’s as a whole, tonight in Northern California?
THE TEAL DEAL
WE’RE DOING IT LIVE: Catch KINGS LIVE on FOX SPORTS WEST at 6:30 PT, followed with Bob and Jim on scene at SAP Center for the live play-by-play call at 7:00.