The Kings returned to practice today after last night’s exciting come-from-behind victory over the Dallas Stars, 5-4 in OT.
"The game was exciting, definitely exciting. I know that the guys haven't really had a problem coming back this year," new acquisition Justin Williams said. "They've had quite a few games where they have been down a couple goals late and come back and won. I think that's very promising, because it's such a young team. When you have confidence and don't get upset when you're down a couple goals, it's fine. Being young and having no worries and having that confidence that you can come back, no matter what the score is, that's really positive and that showed last night.''
At practice today, the llines from that game stayed intact, minus the Captain, Dustin Brown, who missed practice today for what is called a "therapy day." John Zeiler skated in his place, but Brown is expected to play tomorrow vs. Dallas. Jonathan Quick is also expected to start tomorrow. Quick stopped four shots to earn the win in relief, his 14th. The 14 wins are the third-most amongst Kings rookie goaltenders in history.
KINGS COMEBACK ON DALLAS (AGAIN)
The Kings have made a habit of coming back on the Dallas Stars, a history Head coach Terry Murray was unaware of.
"I didn’t know the history, I was unaware of that," Murray said. "I heard this morning, Kopi told me about it. That comeback you had last year was a big one."
Murray is referring to Nov. 10, 2007, the Royal Rebound, where the Stars led, 4-0, with just over seven minutes remaining in regulation. But the Kings scored four goals in a span of 3:11 to tie it and scored another to take a 5-4 lead just two minutes later. Mike Modano tied the game again with 1:05 left in regulation before Anze Kopitar scored midway through OT to win it, 6-5.
But don’t forget some of the other comebacks, courtesy of dallasstars.com:
Jan. 2, 2006: The Stars scored the first two goals of the game but Lubomir Visnovsky scored with less than one second left in the second period. The Stars led, 2-1 with 1:09 to play when Visnovsky tied it with 27 seconds left on a 6-on-4 with the goalie pulled. Mattias Norstrom scored from the point on the power play in OT for the win.
Feb. 12, 2006: Dallas scored four goals in the second, powering to a 5-2 lead after two. Visnovsky scored just 45 second into the third and LA went on to score three goals in the first 2:57 of the period, and just like that, it was tied at 5-5. The Kings won it on a power-play goal by Derek Armstrong with 6:26 left.
In fact, in the Kings’ last 10 victories against Dallas (dating back to Jan. 2, 2006), seven have been in come-from-behind fashion:
March 5, 2009 vs. DAL: (OTW, 5-4) – trailed 3-0 and 4-2
March 22, 2008 at DAL: (W, 4-2) – trailed 2-1
Jan. 12, 2008 vs. DAL: (SOW, 4-3) – trailed 2-0
Nov. 10, 2007 vs. DAL: (OTW, 6-5) – trailed 4-0
Oct. 25, 2007 vs. DAL: (W, 2-1) – trailed 1-0
Feb. 12, 2006 vs. DAL (W, 6-5) – trailed 5-2
Jan. 2, 2006 vs. DAL (OTW, 3-2) – trailed 2-0
KINGS NEED TO GET MORE PHYSICAL, RECALL WESTGARTH
The Kings recalled 6-5, 241-pound enforcer Kevin Westgarth from Manchester on Friday. He will be available on Saturday morning.
"I want that grit and toughness that you have to have out there. I believe in it," head coach Terry Murray said. "I know the opposition teams that we are playing treat us different. We need a physical presence."
The Kings were out-hit last night, 35-28. Entering the game, the Kings were out-hitting their opponents by a 1,648-1,574 margin and the Kings’ 1,648 hits are second most in the NHL.
Raitis Ivanans participated in an off-ice workout in the Kings weight room this morning and no time table has yet been set on his return.
Westgarth, 25, made his Kings/NHL debut with the Kings earlier this season, recording zero points and zero penalty minutes in two games