The Los Angeles King are on their annual Grammy’s road trip, which takes over Staples Center this time of year.
Kings showing their potential, finally
At the half way point of the six game slog across east coast cities, the Kings have given their fans a glimmers of the potential expected of them at the beginning of this season.
The Kings played three games in New York City and came out of it with two wins. They’ve done it in the most unlikely of ways: scoring goals.
After losing the first game by a score of 4-2 to the New York Islanders, the Kings stole a game from the New York Rangers. Then, they thumped the New Jersey Devils by 5-1, winning their last two games by a margin of 9-4.
How the Kings have won
Against the Rangers the Kings showed a resiliency they have lacked most of the year. Down 3-2 with a minute left in the game, Adrian Kempe tied the game. What made the goal so unusual was that it was the first goal scored by the Kings when pulling the goalie for an extra skater all year.
It was Kempe’s second goal of the game and just his second multi-goal game of his career. Tyler Toffoli scored seconds into overtime giving the Kings a 4-3 win.
“We were in it the whole game and we found a way to come back,” Toffoli said on the comeback victory.
“I think it was overdue for us. We are really happy with this win.”
Against the Devils, it was a homecoming for Kings’ forward Ilya Kovalchuk. The Devils were Kovalchuk’s last NHL team before he left abruptly five seasons ago to play in the KHL the Russian professional league.
Kempe started the game where he left off, scoring the first goal. Then, in a 1-1 game starting in the third period, Toffoli opened the floodgates.
Toffoli scored twice in a 35 second span to give the Kings a 3-1 lead they would never relinquish.
As for Kovalchuk, he reminded the Devils fans just what they missed. He closed out the game getting on the score sheet with 2 minutes left providing the Kings 5-1 winning margin.
Kovalchuk was not surprised that he was booed by the same people who cheered him in his last NHL stint.
“You know that’s their emotions, and that’s how they react, so that’s what I think,” Kovalchuk said. “I was happy when I scored. That’s always the best answer.”
With three games left and nothing to lose perhaps the Kings can keep the winning going as they try to make a positive out of a miserable season.