TRH RECAP 41: The Doghouse

KINGS 3, RANGERS 4

*sigh*

So, the LA Kings played hockey Thursday night and, for about a half a period, it looked as if they were going to do the same thing they did to the New York Rangers that they did last June.

Not even five minutes into the game, Jeff Carter took a deflection/pass from Tyler Toffoli and jetted into the Ranger zone, drawing anyone and everyone in the vicinity towards him. BAD MOVE. Tanner Pearson charged the net, took the pass from Carter and scored. NICE START.

Less than a minute later, Justin Williams cruised into the Ranger zone – as he is wont to do – and fired a shot from the right face-off dot towards Cam Talbot, a la all the goals that you see scored when the networks show video from the 1940s to the 1990s. Only problem for Williams was that the goalie wasn’t standing straight-up, and his pads were a lot bigger, as was the goalie. No worry, Talbot handled it like he was the second coming Mario Gosselin, and we all cringed at the thought that a professional goaltender in 2015 could allow a goal like that.

Then the wheels came off. The Rangers reeled off four unanswered goals to take a 4-2 lead. I think I can speak for all Kings and summarize the reactions to each of the goals, as they happened.

“I thought Dan Boyle retired.”

“Remember all those years that the Rangers pumped up Michael Del Zotto, and how he was the East Coast’s answer to Drew Doughty? Then they casually traded him straight-up to Nashville for Kevin Klein, a defensive defenseman who rarely shoots the puck?

Yeah, he just scored on a shot from the point. Cool.”

“LEE STEMPNIAK!?”

“Sure. Marty St. Louis. Why not?”

Justin Williams scored a late goal to bring the Kings within one, and thanks to an even late penalty on Rick Nash with Jon Quick chilling on the bench, the Kings had a 6-4 for 23 seconds. Of course no good came from it, and the Kings lost, prompting headlines around the Tri-state area akin to this:

Revenge

Yeah. You’re right, Ranger fans. Winning a game in the middle of the regular season is just as good as the Stanley Cup Final.

DOGHOUSE WATCH

You’re probably wondering, “why is this recap called ‘The Doghouse?’ Is J.V. in the doghouse?” Well, yes, I am generally in everyone’s “dog house” for one reason or another, but in this case – as this is a Los Angeles Kings blog and not one dedicated to social faux pas – I am referring to one Mike Richards.

My esteemed colleague, King Tufficult, who I like because his TRH handle lies somewhere in-between Tyler Toffoli and King Tuff…

…noted in an extremely well-written article that I will eventually get around to reading, Mike Richards is still a pretty good player.

Darryl Sutter begs to differ.

Good news is, Darryl Sutter was happy with his team’s overall performance, and decided that the team should be rewarded.

Or not. At least Sutter decided that the minutes spent sitting on the bench watching the game were enough for Messrs. Muzzin and Richards.

On the surface, it appears that Richards is trying his hardest to prove Dean Lombardi’s move to not buy-out the one-time all-world center out of the summer wrong. The dude is averaging somewhere around 13 minutes per game, which isn’t awful considering he’s a fourth line center, but it is pretty terrible if you take into account the fact that his contract is 12-years, $69M.

Last night, Richards played a whopping 9:07, which even Kyle Clifford and Andy Andreoff found a bit harsh.

RANDOM THOUGHTS OF THE GAME

  • I guess the Kings have completely edited Jim Fox out of all playoff calls that consist of the Kings doing something exciting. It’s a subtle way of them acknowledging that it’s not particularly professional for a color analyst to be hooting and hollering like a fan. I still think that Fox is one of the best color analysts in the game, but leave the fan stuff for the fans.
  • There must be 45 defensemen in the league with the surname “Schultz.”
  • Is Tyler Bozak a good player, or is just an overpaid dude on an underperforming team? Maybe both.
  • Do you really believe the Rangers think they got payback for losing in the Stanley Cup Final…
John Siegel is a lunatic who writes about hockey, east coast bias, and content marketing. He rarely takes anything seriously, there's a good chance he's drinking right now. You can follow him on Twitter @JVNSiegel but you probably shouldn’t.