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Road trip finale sees Kings take on Blues, Rookie goaltender

by Alex Kinkopf / Los Angeles Kings

KINGS (15-10-6) at BLUES (20-8-2)


YOU CAN FIND ME IN: This is the second of three meetings with St. Louis this season, the Blues will visit STAPLES Center on Thursday to complete a home-and-home series, as well as the season series between these two clubs. The Kings beat the Blues 1-0 in a shootout on October 16 in Los Angeles. St. Louis comes into the night riding a four-game win streak; they beat the Colorado Avalanche 3-2 in overtime Saturday night. This is the final game of the Kings’ current five-game road trip.

THE SETUP: Darryl Sutter juggled lines again this morning, but there are no extreme changes to the units. Anze Kopitar will continue to center Jeff Carter and Dustin Brown on the first line, Mike Richards will center Dwight King and Tanner Pearson on the third line, and Tyler Toffoli moves to the fourth unit to play alongside Kyle Clifford and Trevore Lewis. The second line of Jarret Stoll, Marian Gaborik, and Justin Williams remains intact from Sunday’s game in Toronto.

WHO’S IN, WHO’S OUT: Jonathan Quick, who left the ice first during the morning skate, is expected to make his 25th start of the season tonight. Quick made 43 saves against the Blues on October 16 in a 1-0 shootout win. Defenseman Jamie McBain and forward Jordan Nolan stayed on the ice for extra work along with Martin Jones following the morning skate; those two are expected to be healthy scratches tonight.

RECENT HISTORY: Dating back to the start of the 2011-’12 campaign, the Kings are 9-2-0 in 11 regular season meetings against the St. Louis Blues. The Kings’ only two losses to the Blues in that timespan have come at St. Louis’ Scottrade Center. The Kings split their two games played in St. Louis last season; they’re 4-2-0 at the Scottrade Center in regular season contest over the past three seasons.

FRESH MEAT: The Kings will see a goaltender they’ve never seen before tonight in Jake Allen. Allen, considered a Rookie, played in part of the 2012-13 season, and has never faced the Kings. Allen, making his third consecutive start tonight, comes into the game sporting a 10-3-1 record with a .907 SV% and a 2.50 GAA. Allen’s 10 wins is the most for any Rookie goaltender in the NHL this season.

THE LAST TIME AROUND: In the Kings’ previous visit to Scottrade Center on January 16 of last season, the Kings beat the Blues 4-1. Trevor Lewis scored two goals; his first goal proved to be the game-winner, and he added a shorthanded marker to extend the Kings’ lead. Jake Muzzin and Jeff Carter added in with goals of their own; Carter hasn’t scored a goal in the past 12 games. Jonathan Quick made 28 saves in the Kings’ 4-1 win.


WE’RE DOING IT LIVE: Catch KINGS LIVE at 4:30PM PT on FOX SPORTS WEST, followed with Bob and Jim on the live play-by-play call from Scottrade Center for puck drop at 5:00PM PT.

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