Los Angeles Kings @ Boston Bruins Game 55 Running Diary: Zebras giftwrap a power play in OT as Boston rules Los Angeles again, 5-4

“We didn’t come out to play in third.” Nate Thompson

It’s the Los Angeles Kings versus the Boston Bruins from the TD Garden.

The Kings have taken up the Los Angeles fight in our quest to beat Boston on a regular basis. We all know about the World Series and the Super Bowl defeats, but the Lakers stepped up in this very building earlier in the week. It won’t be easy for the Kings as they face this guy:

And there’s this:

Never worry though. Dion Phaneuf is back in the lineup after the first healthy scratch of his 1,000+ game career. Willie D. must have listened to his proclamation that “I’m not that old. I will say that, and I’ve got lots left.”

Tyler Toffoli, who has remembered how to finish (four goals in five games), returns to the scene of this crime:

First Period

07:15—Kings being outshot 5-0. Typical uninspired afternoon game start for Los Angeles.

08:13—Jake DeBrusk with the hook, Kings to the power play.

10:05—Interference on Alex Iafallo as Brad Marchand dances around him looking for a shorty. Not the best stretch of games for number 19 coming out of the break. Side note...we’ve mentioned this numerous times, but the four forwards, one defenseman setup doesn’t work on the power play. This is why the Kings are second in shorthanded goals allowed and their power play is a disaster. C’mon WIllie, get it together!

12:08—Power play killed, but the Bruins made Jonathan Quick show off his acrobatic skills at the very end of the power play. Bruins outshooting the Kings 8-4. Thirteen straight penalty kills for the Kings.

17:15—Say what you want about Dion Phaneuf, but he looks pretty good today. Like top pairing good.

18:43—Jonathan Quick being Jonathan Quick:

End of Period.

Lethargic. Disorganized. Sleepy. Un-opportunistic. Four words that have personified the team all season have returned in the first. Kings made Quick work hard, but he was up for the task. Scoreless heading into the second.

Shots: Bruins 15. Kings 6.

Second Period

00:59—Drew Doughty overplays things a bit and knocks the net off during a Bruins cycle and Boston goes to the power play, where they are 33 per cent at home on the year. Actually, Drew took the blame, but Quick did the deed.

02:59—Fourteen straight kills for the Kings as they outshot the Bruins 2-1 during their man advantage.

Bruins 1. Kings 0.

04:38—Patrice Bergeron slides the puck perfectly to Charlie McAvoy for his second goal of the year. Mike Amadio needs to work on his defensive awareness; he was caught watching the ice melt as McAvoy sneaked away from him. Easy tip-in. Kings being outshot 17-6 through 24 minutes of play. Could be a long day if the Kings don’t snap out of this slumber.

05:17—Iafallo made Zdeno Chara look like the 41-year-old he, is drawing the interference penalty. Kings to the power play.

07:17—Kings used that power play to catch up on the shot count—trailing now 17-13—but nothing doing.

07:36—Kings back to the power play after David Krejci slashes Anze Kopitar.

Bruins 1. Kings 1.

08:13—Slumber broken. The second power play unit worked that to perfection. Iafallo to Martinez to Adrian Kempe back to Martinez who tees up Iafallo for the one-timer blast. Iafallo is finally back from the break!

11:30—No one at TD Garden can remember the last shot on goal the Bruins have had.

12:15—Meanwhile in Philadelphia, the Ducks are losing to the Flyers 4-1 in the second. Pardon my schadenfreude, but it’s always nice to see Anaheim on the way to their 19th loss in 21 games.

Kings 2. Bruins 1.

14:02—Dustin Brown gathers the puck behind the net and finds Kopitar down low for the one-timer. Dion Phaenuf still looking 26 again. Kings smelling the playoffs now!

16:38—Bruins to the box as Leipsic draws a trip. Kings looking for more.

18:38—Penalty killed but the Kings are 25 per cent (1 out of 4) on the power play today.

End of Period.

Kings come alive in the second, outshooting Boston 16-7 and outscoring them 2-1. Los Angeles has only lost once this year when leading after two periods. Note to WIllie D.: Now’s the time to go full Scotty Bowman and keep the boys focused.

Shots: Kings 22. Bruins 22.

Third Period

Kings 2. Bruins 2.

03:27—Danton Heinen scoops up the rebound after the Bruins held the puck for virtually the entire period so far.

04:00—Here come the “Beat LA” chants. Ugh, the misery. The Kings still on their heels.

Bruins 3. Kings 2.

04:57—Two goals in ninety seconds for Boston. This time Krejci picks up another rebound. Stop the bleeding already.

Dear Willie D.:
Remember my offer to be your timeout coordinator? This is the time to pull the trigger. Yeah, it’s early, but the boys look awful. Time to coach my friend.

05:15—Boston’s Wagner trips up Leipsic and maybe there’s the momentum break the Kings needs. Now, if only Willie D. would put out a standard two D, three forward configuration on the power play.

05:16—Nope, there’s the status quo.

Bruins 4. Kings 2.

06:49—You’ve got to be kidding me. Marchand completes the two-on-one break with Bergeron for the shorthanded goal. The Bruins have taken over completely in the third.

Dear Willie D.:
Why are you so stubborn?

08:50—The Kings with their first shot of the period. What? It only took them nine minutes to muster a shot?

Dear Hockey Gods:
This is where we are really, really so confused. You dangle both Jack Hughes and a playoff berth 55 games into this season and we don’t know whether to cheer for wins or root for defeat. Send us a sign. We are dying inside.
Love, me

Bruins 4. Kings 3.

09:19—Wait! What? Is that THE sign? Nate Thompson was feeling it, tapping the ice backhanded to Leipsic who hears him and feeds Big Nate who finds the empty spot behind Rask.

Bruins 4. Kings 4.

15:13—Oscar Fantenberg ties it up! Credit Toffoli with an amazing save to keep the puck in the zone. Rask never saw it. Five goals in the third. We have a new game!

End of Period.

Onto overtime where we will skate 3-on-3 for a while.

Shots: Bruins 29. Kings 28.


00:28—Ahhhhhh! Kopitar almost deflects it in past Quick.

00:52—Kempe on the breakaway....denied!

1:27—Iyla Kovalchuk gets called for the phantom trip on Pasternak. That’s bogus, zebras! The zebras hate the Kings this year. We’ll skate 4-on-3 for a while.

Bruins 5. Kings 4.

2:33—Bergeron scores the goal on Patrice Bergeron Night in Boston. A point is a point but the zebras handed that to the Bruins.

End of Game.

Shots: Bruins 33. Kings 29.


Kings are 3-1-1 since the Jake Muzzin Trade and playing with heart for the first time all year. That’s seven points out of a possible 10 so far on the Grammy Trip. Kings within six points of a playoff spot.

Next: Monday—Kings travel to Landover, Maryland to take on the defending Stanley Cup Champions at Capital One Arena.


Mr. Selke Night in Boston: