Kings-Stars Game Preview: No, really, goodbye

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

seriously, Dallas - get out

Los Angeles Kings v Dallas Stars (Staples Center)

Time: 6.00 PM

TV: NHL Network, Fox Sports West

Enemy reading: Defending Big D

Season series: Game 1 | Game 2 | Game 3

Stars (projected) lineup:

Whitney-Benn-Eriksson
Nystrom-Fidder-Cole
Smith-Eakin-Garbutt
Roussel-Wandell-Fraser

Dillon-Goligoski
Rome-Robidas
lesser Benn-Larsen

Kari Lehtonen

Injured: MacDermid (chest), Daley (upper body), Chiasson (shoulder); Scratched: n/a

Kings (projected) lineup:

Brown-Kopitar-Williams
Penner-Richards-Carter
King-Stoll-Lewis
Clifford-Richardson-Nolan

Regehr-Doughty
Scuderi-Voynov
Greene-Muzzin

Quick

Injured: Mitchell (knee); Scratched: Ellerby, Fraser, Martinez

Game notes:

  • Hey, the Kings clinched. Thanks for losing that game, Detroit. Good, good work.
  • The Stars, even more so than last game, are coming in desperate. Sure, every team wants to win every game, but the Stars really, really want to win this game. After thumping the Canucks 5-1 on Thursday, they lost 2-1 to the Blues on Friday, and their playoff picture gets very grim without two points tonight.
  • Matt Greene is back! He did some very Matt Greene things during the game against Columbus, but he played a healthy chunk of the game, and I thought looked about as good as could be expected for having missed all but one game of the season.
  • I am still Team Free Alec Martinez, but I'm not going to fight about it right now. At least with Greene back, all three pairings are vaguely balanced and functional.
  • Jonathan Quick: still gettin' 'er done. He's now had a string of very solid outings, and, as I said before, I am now less cautiously optimistic looking forward. I'm guessing Jonathan Bernier draws the Wild on Tuesday, and then Quick closes out the season.
  • Fun! With! Numbers!:
    Team
    GP
    Points
    ROW
    Goal
    Differential
    Home/Away
    Record
    PP%
    PK%
    Kings (4th, West)
    44 55
    23
    +16
    17-4-1 20.6 (8th)
    82.9 (11th)
    Stars (10th, West)
    44 47 20 -5
    11-10-1 17.1 (18th)
    81.6 (14th)
  • It's still almost definitely probably going to be Kings/Sharks or Kings/Blues in the first round and I just kind of wish we could skip straight there. But first: seventh seed is clinched tonight if the Kings get at least a point. Sixth is clinched with a regular win and a Minnesota regulation loss. We are Flames fans tonight.
  • Prediction: the story of the game is Kari Lehtonen, yet again, but the Kings win 3-2, because blah blah 3-2 league etc. This is the last Kings-Stars divisional rivalry game, and it would be nice to go out on top. Go Kings Go.
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