Kings-Canucks: Game 2 Playoff Preview

Since we last tangled with the Vancouver Canucks (and saw them fall down)...

IN: Andrew Ebbett, Keith Ballard (Canucks); Andrei Loktionov (Kings)

OUT: Daniel Sedin (concussion), Byron Bitz (suspension); Kyle Clifford (concussion)

Enemy Reading: Nucks Misconduct

Lineups:

Raymond-Sedin-Burrows
Lapierre-Kesler-Booth
Higgins-Pahlsson-Hansen
Malhotra-Ebbett-Kassian

Edler-Bieksa
Hamhuis-Tanev
Ballard-Salo

Luongo

Kings lineup:


Brown-Kopitar-Williams
King-Richards-Carter
Penner-Stoll-Lewis
Loktionov-Fraser-Nolan

Scuderi-Doughty
Mitchell-Voynov
Martinez-Greene

Quick

The biggest news today is Sutter's choice to go with speedy, shifty young Andrei Loktionov over Kevin Westgarth to fill Kyle Clifford's fourth line spot. I would have been fine with either choice, but I'm still wondering in awed amazement what will happen the next time we post a guy's picture.

Loktionov is getting the chance of his career. Sutter trusts him. Let's just see how this plays out.

The Canucks' usual antics were on full display in Game 1, but as Mike Richards noted, the Kings were pretty good at not getting drawn into "after the whistle" stuff. The refs seemed to want everyone to knock it off. The media in Vancouver is calling for greater discipline from their club, but I fully expect Kesler and co. to try to interfere with Jonathan Quick again. It's their M.O. at this point. I only hope they'll be caught if they do.

As nice as the win was, every King mentioned areas for improvement: staying out of the box, capitalizing on chances, limiting mistakes. Spending less time on special teams could help the Kings establish their rhythm.

Splitting the games in Vancouver shouldn't satisfy them. They must get back to dominating at even strength as they successfully did against the Canucks all year.

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