Sunday, April 25, 2010

Canucks look to close out Kings

After an impressive Game 5 effort that saw the Canucks post 7 goals on LA Kings goaltending, the Kings were left scratching their heads. Vancouver victimized Jonathan Quick with a series of well-aimed shots and rebounds that left Kings coach Murray scratching his head.

Roberto Luongo meanwhile appears to be gaining more consistency as the series goes on and looked solid in net in front of the home fans in Game 5.

The Kings and their coaching staff will have to stem the tide which appears to be propelling the Canucks towards the second round. With 13 goals in their past 2 games, the Canucks have appeared fairly dominant of late - especially the last four periods of play - out-scoring LA 11-3 in that span.

The Kings will come out hard with the season on the line but will need a few things to be victorious and force a game 7.

1. Goaltending
The Los Angeles goaltending must be better. Jonathan Quick has allowed too many goals, several of the questionable variety in the past two outings. Jonathan Bernier has been summoned as a back up on an emergency basis. The Kings hope it doesn't come to that.

2. Powerplay

The Kings powerplay successes have been well documented. However, it is one of the only facets of this series where there has been a distinct advantage in the Kings favour. If they are to win this game 6 and series, they need to continue to assert their dominance in this area and force the Canucks to doubt their defensive ability on the special teams.

3. Scoring
While the Canucks penalty killing woes have been well documented, the Kings 5-5 have simply been dominated by Vancouver. Not only that, but the Kings top forwards will need a big game. Kopitar, Brown, Frolov, Smyth - have been relatively quiet of late. Drew Doughty will likely play one of his biggest games of his life tonight, but he cannot do it on his own.

The Canucks should be going with the same lineup as Game 5. Despite confusion, Alberts is in and Baumgartner is out for this evening.

The Canucks meanwhile would be well-served to not only weather the opening minutes, but if the Kings passion spills over into an untimely penalty, the Canucks would be well-suited to capitalize and cast doubt into the hearts of the Kings and their fans. Taking the fans out of the game and generating momentum via a powerplay goal or a penalty kill would do wonders for the Canucks chances.

Nevertheless, the Canucks edge in experience over the Kings should bode well, but we all know the Canucks have had troubles closing out series and really putting their foot down and asserting themselves. Stay tuned to PuckWatch for post-game highlights and comments.

1 comment:

  1. The LA crowd gets quieter than a mouse when they are losing, even by 1 early in the game. The Canucks scoring is on fire, which is a huge problem for the Kings.