I Watched the Game: What Happened in the 3rd Period Last Night?

Why is Ehrhoff in the doghouse? Maybe Lucic should be too. A running diary of the disastrous first 10 minutes of the 3rd period

What a strange game last night. By and large, the Kings dominated the first 40 minutes, even though they ended up down a goal. But in the third, the Blue Jackets turned the tables completely.

Of course, examining just 10 minutes of any game is dangerous. In the big picture, it doesn't mean anything. And I give Columbus a lot of credit. In this stretch, in general, they clogged up the neutral zone, tightened up their coverage, and were aggressive on the puck. But as you'll see in my notes, I think they simply played their game to a "T," while the Kings made a series of uncharacteristic mistakes which the Blue Jackets ultimately capitalized on:

19:49 McNabb goes for hit along the boards, misses, allowing Jenner to cut alone toward Quick. Luckily, Kopitar is there to back McNabb up to prevent a more dangerous shot.

19:11 Barely in the NZ, Lucic makes a casual backhand pass that is easily intercepted. LA loses possession.

​18:11 This is the moment where Andreoff and McBain need to figure out who gets Johansen and who gets Foligno. Instead, both go after Johansen, and Johansen finds Foligno alone for a quality chance.

​16:20 Doughty hits post

15:47 Kopitar tries to break Brown and is intercepted. Another NZ turnover.

​14:07 McBain brings it up end to end, feeds Lucic in slot, Lucic shanks it

13:52 Ehrhoff falls asleep in the NZ, lets Hartnell at full speed get behind him. Quick stops Hartnell, who was in all alone, but the Kings are scrambling at this point, and Lucic is forced to take a hooking penalty. This play might explain why Ehrhoff was skating with Greene this morning.

​11:17 After PK, Lucic is careless with the puck in OZ, allows Calvert to swipe it forward, breaking CLB on a partial 2-on-1, which is cut off by McBain. Lucic does hustle back to prevent a full-blown outnumbered attack. However, this leads to a DZ faceoff which CLB wins and promptly dominates on the cycle.

​10:24 Under light pressure, Muzzin flubs on a pass, which CLB scoops up for another shot. CLB is up to 21 shots now after starting the period with eight. During this time, LAK forwards are Clifford-Andreoff-Nolan, who manage to advance the puck into the OZ twice, but shockingly, create zero offense.

​9:11 Four Kings (Brown, Gaborik, Martinez, and Muzzin) allow Johnson to dance end to end. Watching the replay, Gaborik could've taken a better route when he started chasing Johnson in the DZ, Brown could've stepped up in the NZ, and either Muzzin or Martinez should've tried to do so in the DZ. Instead, Brown, Martinez, and Muzzin all backed off. Granted, all this bluster just set up what should've been a harmless point shot from Campbell. Except...