Preview, Game Day #11: Los Angeles Kings @ Chicago Blackhawks
Basically the only two teams that matter.
Los Angeles Kings @ Chicago Blackhawks
Time: 5:30 Pacific
TV: Fox Sports West, CSN Chicago, NHL Network US, Sportsnet East/Ontario/West
Enemy Reading: Second City Hockey
Los Angeles Kings
Scratched: McBain, Weal Injured: Greene, King
Injured: Duncan Keith, Marian Hossa (day-to-day, could play tonight but unlikely)
Stats & Such
(Small sample size warning. Fancy stats courtesy War on Ice)
|Streak||Won 7 ||Lost 2 |
|Goals For/Game||2.40||2.18 |
|ES Goal %||48.0||39.3 |
| ES Shot % ||51.8||51.0|
|ES PDO||99.1||97.5 |
|ES Corsi %||56.0||51.8|
|ES Fenwick %||54.5||50.6|
|ES Scoring Chance %||54.1||51.8 |
|ES High-Danger SC %||51.2 ||50.2 |
|Power Play % (Rank)||18.2 (18th) ||20.0 (14th) |
|Penalty Kill % (Rank)||82.9 (12th) ||83.3 (10th) |
|Starting Goalie (tonight)||Quick||Crawford|
|ES Save %||.934 ||.945|
- Oh, good, a Kings-Blackhawks game. Was that scream of abject horror mine or yours?
- On the upside, if you absolutely have to play the Blackhawks now would be the time you'd like to do it. With Keith & Hossa both out with injuries, the Hawks lineup looks a lot less scary than usual. It certainly helps that Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville has put his line jumbler into action and came back with, uh....whatever those forward lines are. Top Line Forward Ryan Garbutt might be the only thing less intimidating than Top Line Forward Trevor Lewis. Oh no, watch out Kings defense, Garbutt might....take some offensive zone penalties!!!
- (Yes, I'm fully aware this mockery means he's scoring a hat trick against us tonight. Sorry folks.)
- So anyway, the Hawks are kinda struggling right now. They've lost their last two, they're just a game above .500, and they play in the Central division so they're in 6th place (!). Of course, they would be tied with San Jose for 3rd if they played in the Pacific, which should tell you all you need to know about those two divisions. More concerning for the Hawks though is their very middling possession play; 51.8% Corsi and 50.6% Fenwick are lower than we're all used to seeing out of the perennial contenders. Yes, it's early and they're banged up, granted.
- Meanwhile, the Kings are riding high following their 7th straight victory over Nashville on Saturday. They'll enter Chicago putting a modest road unbeaten record of 3-0 on the line, and luckily it looks like they'll have Christian Ehrhoff in the lineup after he left the last game following a dirty hit from Mike Ribeiro. Derek Forbort was recalled from Ontario as a precaution, but every indication is Ehrhoff should be playing tonight unless there's a set-back.
- It sounds like it will be Quick in net tonight, with Enroth's 2nd start of the season waiting until tomorrow (unless that wacky Darryl plays Quick in both, of course, which he has been known to do). I'm not 100% sure on this because this morning's skate was optional and Quick skipped it entirely, but Enroth did stay on the ice until the very end (along with Jordan Weal Never Play Again), indicating he's likely not getting the start tonight.
- And now we bring to you a brand new feature: which Mega Man villain are you, opposing team?? I started this off with an easy one, because obviously the Blackhawks are: Tomahawk Man!!! Tomahawk Man was from Mega Man 6, the last Mega Man game released for the NES (this game hit Japan in 1993, amazingly enough, and since the SNES had been around for years at this point Capcom declined to even publish it in America; thankfully, the good folks at Nintendo stepped in to make sure we got the amazing Who Is Mr. X mystery on our shores). He threw tomahawks at you and slid around a lot. Even on the scale of original MM series Robot Masters he was pretty hard! He also showed us all that totally misappropriating the culture of indigenous people is neither an American- or even human-exclusive phenomenon. It is up to you to decide if a white robot looks more or less stupid in an Indian head dress than a white person.
- PREDICTION: Kings win 79-3, just like they're gonna finish the season! All 3 Hawks goals are scored by Ryan Garbutt, as we went over earlier.