GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Winning in the playoffs gets a heck of a lot easier when you can steal momentum while shorthanded. The Kings have been doing a masterful job of it since Game 5 against the Vancouver Canucks and their perfect penalty kill is a major reason why they are three wins shy of going to the Stanley Cup Final for the first time since 1993.
The Kings have successfully killed 24 straight power plays dating back to the first round. They were 17-for-17 against the Blues and 5-for-5 in their 4-2 win Sunday in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals.
They'll try to keep the run of perfection up in Game 2 Tuesday at Jobing.com Arena (9 p.m. ET, NBCSN, TSN, RDS).
"You know what? That's something that we put our big focus on -- doing our PK the right way, four guys trying to outwork five guys," Kings goalie Jonathan Quick said. "We've been doing a good job of late, but that's all in the past. It means nothing going forward here."
Kings coach Darryl Sutter doesn't want to talk too much about the PK for fear of jinxing it, but after the game Sunday he couldn't stop himself from discussing the keys to its success against the Coyotes.
"There's a lot that goes into the penalty kill -- faceoff, shot blocking, clearing the puck down the ice," Sutter said. "It's a big job against these guys (the Coyotes) because of the way (Keith) Yandle moves back there and (Oliver) Ekman-Larsson moves back there. Then they get a net presence; it's tough to handle. Then you've got to be careful in your clears because Smith moves it back up against the wall."
The Kings were good in all areas, limiting the Coyotes to only four shots on goal over their 7:36 of power play time in Game 1. They blocked three shots and were credited with two takeaways while also getting two shorthanded shots on goal for themselves.
"When a guy goes down and blocks a shot, that's just sacrificing the body for the team and that's exactly what the postseason is about, playing with heart, playing for each other with determination," Kings defenseman Drew Doughty said. "That's exactly what our team is doing."
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