Mar 1, 2013, 3:40 PM EDT
One of the biggest developments in LA’s recent surge — the Kings have won five straight and seven of eight — is who’s been between the pipes.
After a sluggish start to the campaign, Jonathan Quick has been platooning with Jonathan Beriner and, according to head coach Darryl Sutter, is now in a full-on battle for playing time.
“They’re competing against east other to see who plays the next game,” Sutter told the media Friday, prior to departing for Vancouver. “It’s not necessarily that they’re hot. They’re playing well enough to win the next game.”
Quick, the reigning Conn Smythe winner, received the lion’s share of work to start the season and was the goalie of record in nine of the first 10 games.
But after a 3-2 loss in Detroit on Feb. 10 that dropped LA to 3-5-2 on the year, Sutter shook things up.
Bernier got the call for the next two games and played well, recording a 4-1 win over St. Louis and a 2-1 win over Columbus.
That kickstarted a goaltending rotation — since the Blue Jackets win, the Kings have gone: Quick, Quick, Bernier, Quick, Quick, Bernier.
Bernier is a perfect 4-0-0 while Quick is 3-1-0 over the last eight games, and it’s the former that could be holding the advantage moving forward.
On Wednesday, Bernier stopped 32 of 33 shots in a 2-1 win over Detroit and was named the game’s first star. Afterward, Sutter was full of praise for his 24-year-old ‘tender.
“I don’t think we had much in the tank, to be honest,” he explained. “The goaltender was the difference in the game.”
This development is pretty interesting given Quick signed a monster 10-year, $58 million extension with LA in the summer.
Which begs the question — is it time for the Kings to trade Bernier?
Mar 16, 2014, 11:35 PM EDT
Also an update on the East.
Mar 16, 2014, 10:11 PM EDT
Mar 16, 2014, 9:28 PM EDT
Winnipeg takes early advantage over Dallas Stars.
Mar 16, 2014, 9:11 PM EDT
At least Buffalo isn’t in a playoff chase.
Mar 16, 2014, 7:51 PM EDT
Did Carl Hagelin score? Judge for yourself.
Mar 16, 2014, 7:26 PM EDT
Also included: video of Kevin Bieksa’s impressive “save.”
Mar 16, 2014, 6:59 PM EDT
The rivalry relocated.
Mar 16, 2014, 6:33 PM EDT
Tough loss for a player on a hot streak.
Mar 16, 2014, 6:18 PM EDT
It will begin 1-0, but with a full 60-minute game.
Mar 16, 2014, 6:06 PM EDT
Washington gets two key points in regulation.
Mar 16, 2014, 5:45 PM EDT
Good timing considering Chicago’s recent stumbles.
Mar 16, 2014, 5:13 PM EDT
Yep, he’s ridiculous.
Mar 16, 2014, 4:41 PM EDT
He sustained the lower-body injury earlier this week.
Mar 16, 2014, 3:44 PM EDT
Pittsburgh just lost back-to-back contests to Philadelphia.
Mar 16, 2014, 3:09 PM EDT
Wayne Simmonds had two goals and an assist to reach the 50-point milestone.
Mar 16, 2014, 2:55 PM EDT
Robin Lehner will play between the pipes instead.
Mar 16, 2014, 1:47 PM EDT
Jhonas Enroth started for Buffalo on Saturday.
Mar 16, 2014, 1:08 PM EDT
He wasn’t having a bad game, but his teammates were.
Mar 16, 2014, 12:20 PM EDT
Crosby and Malkin might get more playing time together as a result.
Mar 16, 2014, 11:58 AM EDT
The game starts at 12:30 p.m. ET.
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