So This Is What The Basement Feels Like

Pre-game:
I took in this game not up in the 300 section or on the radio, like usual, but in the 100 section. KQ and her family had an extra ticket on their hands and were extremely gracious in inviting me to sit with them. It was unbelievable to be sitting 13 rows back from the glass. So, much love and thanks to her and her family who were unbelievably kind.
- On to some news: Fro is back in the lineup, which makes me very excited because he is a big body on the lines and was the highest point holder before his injury.
- Scratches: Willsie, Dallman, Nagy (good thing his contract is only a year long), and Barbs (obviously)

1st period:
- Starting lineup is JJ and Blake on D with Sully, Cammy, and Fro out in front. Aubin's between the pipes and, once again, I AM UNSURE.
- The first couple of shifts bring a free-flowing type of game with no real puck possession for too long. Zeiler is moving around and being the gnat that he is.
- Army has two HITS in the first 3 minutes.
- Fro - HIT (I just hope these hits don't aggravate his injury since he hasn't been playing at this high of an intensity for awhile)
- Calder and Sully are getting in some forechecking trying to keep the energy levels up.
- Wild Goal - Gaborik nets it at 3:48 going top shelf on Aubin from the right circle. Apparently it's gonna be one of THOSE games.
- It is clear that neither side is taking ownership of the neutral zone. Where is the Wild's Trap that I've heard about?
- Giuliano - HIT (I think I'm just gonna start calling him my Manchester Boy)
- As I look up at the scoreboard and see that there is 13:08 left in the first, I also see that the Wild has only one shot on net. What the hell? Damnit Aubin!
- Ahh, there's that Wild Trap. BUT, Zeiler is able to break through two Minnys just outside the blueline and charges into the Wild zone. Obviously he doesn't score.
- Anze is called for hooking at 10:14. So this is the first of about 100 penalties that Mick McGeough calls tonight. Yes, it's McGeough at the helm and he is quite whistle happy. Handzus gets a break into the Wild zone but Harding solidly denies him. The puck gets moved out but it appears that the Wild are pretty good at this Trap business. Anze comes out of the box and immediately makes a break for the net and throws the puck at Harding on the backhand. Wild still up 1-0.
- Ratti - HIT
- Anze - HIT
- Sully, Anze, and Brownie are out on the Kings PP. They're getting chances and I thought something was going to happen when Blake moved his 6'4" self in front of Harding. Vish gets the puck and slaps it right at Harding's midsection.
- 2:23 left - Blake gets a break on his own into Wild territory, but instead of awkwardly going all the way to the net, he stops and takes a slapper from the top of the circle. Harding saves and the score remains the same.
- Calder receives two for holding at 19:06. C'mon guys, just get through this period! I'm still unsure about Aubin here because Minny is setting up well on their PP. The minute ends and it's 15 minutes of rest.

End of the first period:
- Kings have 12 shots on to Wild's 10.
- It looks like the Kings are losing steam and, once again, they have to play down on the scoreboard. It must be so mentally tiring to ALWAYS be down.
- Who's gonna come with energy into the second? The Kings? The Wild? Well, I know Ratti's always up for some trash talking.

2nd period:
- This is the start of a seemingly non-stop slew of penalties. After a while, I really had no idea who was called for what when it was a 5-on-3 for the Kings or 5-on-4 for the Wild. It was utter pandemonium so I stopped keeping track.
- The woman sitting to my right was super nice and I loved her commentary through the game. She made me laugh even when the Kings were making me sad. (KQ, don't be so sad! When the Kings hand you lemons, you gotta smash them back in their faces!) The reason I mention this woman was because she called Giuliano a "sparkplug," which I thought was a very appropriate descriptor. My Manchester Boy was looking productive out there, which is more than I can say for some of the guys...
- Anze gets rocked and Moore takes down Brownie.
- 15:06 left and the Kings can't get anything set up on this PP. Hmm, sounds familiar.
- The Kings get called for too many men at 4:54 (p.s. I'm now looking at the box score for these times).
- This just getting ridiculous; I don't know who's in the box, on the bench, on the ice.
- It's a 5-on-3 now (I don't even know what's going on), and Rolston gets the puck right in the slot at the top between the circles and slaps it toward Aubin into all of the traffic. What do you know, Minnesota scores and it's now 2-0. The Kings look like slugs out there.
- Modry is doing his work on the PK, as my right-hand woman said to me. Ok, I'll give props where props are due. I'm not one to shun effort.
- So I mentioned this previously, but it looks like Handzus is more concerned with trying to get a short-handed goal than actually trying to clear the puck on the PK. He really should be more focused on getting the damn puck outta the zone first!
- Dizzzam, Stuart just got rocked into the boards. Hope he got the license plate number on that fella.
- 11:10 left and Calder is called for holding. (Damn, I can't read my own notes for this PK...ha...ha....)
- 7:22 left and the Kings have another PP. I thought they did well setting up in the neutral zone and controlling the puck into the Wild zone. There was a good chance here with Kopi getting a solid opportunity. Once again, Harding comes through for Minny. Damnit, Kirsten!
- There was one play where Sully was on the right-wing half boards and cross passed it to Fro who one-timed it but was denied. Surprisingly, the same exact play happens when Sully gets the puck again. This time, Harding is ready for it. Blast!
- Kopi is just not having a good night; here's another play where he is denied. Cammy is on the goal line on the right side and passes it to Kopi on a backhanded fancy spin move. *sigh* Harding is just a wall tonight.
- Kings PP at 15:35. They're able to cycle it enough, but nothing is working. They get some shots on, but to no avail.
- Right after this PP ends, the Kings go on the PP again.
- Then Blake gets a penalty for interference. I was just amazed at how many times McGeough blew his whistle.
(What did you call me? That's 2 minutes for name calling. Get in the box.)

End of the second period:
- Fred Roggin was sitting by the glass with his wife and kid. His tiny blond woman had some major bling on her finger. Whoa.
- So I guess I'll give someone else some credit here. Aubin has actually been making some saves here and there. I'm not as pissed at him as I have been in other games. I mean, at least it isn't 6-0, right?
- This view 13 rows back is crazy close!
- Fro is definitely making his presence known on the ice but his frustrations are highly visible.
- I wonder what Handzus' face off percentage is so far?.....

3rd period:
- The rest of Blake's penalty was killed without a hitch.
- Brownie actually had a break on his own, but it was him versus 3 Minnys and a Harding. Obviously he was shut down, but I liked the effort! If I had a "Vote for Lubo" cookie, I'd totally give it to Brownie.
- There was a point where (I think) the Wild should have been called for too many men (Crow was standing on top of the bench all kinds of pissed off), but I guess McGeough didn't feel like calling that one.
- Brownie - HIT
- We're just getting shut down left and right. Rolly McGeough helps this by calling a play dead when Harding didn't even have control of the puck. Argh.
- The face off at 15:05 brought in some good chances. Carney flat out denies Cammy's shot. Talk about frustrating; my energy level is dying...
- Schultz absolutely smashes Ratti. Something else I've noticed lately is that Zeiler isn't falling all over the ice anymore. He actually possess the ability to keep himself upright.
- 11:05 left and the puck is moving from end to end to end to end, aka, no one has clear possession for too long. Calder gets boarded but McGeough decides he doesn't want to call this either.
- Kings are on the PP again at 10:25. They're able to keep it in the Wild zone but this doesn't look like a PP at all. Fro is getting annoyed.
- 7:19 - On the scoreboard I see that Minny has 10 less shots on (22) than the Kings (32). Why are they up 2-0? Aubin...
- Kings on the PP again - Passing and passing and passing and passing. Minny is just getting their PK done. They're being aggressive and forcing the Kings into lameness.
- Cammy falls on Harding during a scrum and gets a goalie interference penalty at 16:05.
- Kings Goal - Blake at 18:48 with assists to Cammy and Sully. They had a 6-on-5 by pulling Aubin and got a result. There's hope. And if not, at least they didn't get shut out. Always gotta look on the bright side.
- The end of game rush begins after this goal. There is a mad dash by the Kings and the play is whistled with 4.3 seconds left. All they have to do is win the face off and get a shot on. It's happened before. Just please don't let Handzus take the face off....
- Cammy steps up to the plate and draws. We get the puck but it's scramble, scramble, scramble, scramble in front of the net and the game is over.
(Hey Staples Center, maybe you should clean your glass)
End of the game:
- Kings 1, Wild 2
- Shots on - Kings 36, Wild 24
- A total of 18 penalties were called, with the majority coming in the second period. In looking at the score sheet, can you really blame me for not knowing who was off for what, when, why, how?
- Surprisingly Anze gets the third star of the night with 0 goals and 0 assists. Can someone tell me why? Why didn't Blake get it? He scored the only freaking goal!
- Kings Talk on the dreary drive home. Some guy called in saying he read online that DL came out saying that he wanted high draft picks and so signed the free agents to make it so. Ok, this was just about the most asinine thing to call in about. What website was he reading? Or, more likely, what message board was he on? The internet is filled with gossip and it's people like this guy that perpetuate this crap. I was so irritated at this guy for saying this on the air. Do you really think a GM of multi-million dollar professional sports team would really say this? "Hey guys, I want high draft picks so I'm just gonna sign guys to make this team suck. Sound good? Ok, it's set. Go Operation Kings Suckage." I can't believe this caller thought DL actually said this. It's obvious he doesn't read any websites of substance and reliability.
- Ummm...the basement sure is cold.

Follow up:
1) Watching the after game interview Crow is pretty fired up. It's 4 minutes and 40 seconds of heated comments. But they don't even show the full interview, so who knows how long it actually went for.
2) Jason LaBarbera is now on IR (retroactive to December 1st).


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