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Playoffs Tonight: Kings look for ‘killer instinct’ against Sharks

May 21, 2013, 8:46 AM EDT

SAN JOSE, CA - MAY 18: Goalkeeper Antti Niemi #31, Joe Pavelski #8, Brad Stuart #7 and Justin Braun #61 of the San Jose Sharks defends the net against Jeff Carter #77 of the Los Angeles Kings in the second period in Game Three of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at HP Pavilion on May 18, 2013 in San Jose, California. The Sharks won the game in overtime 2-1. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) Getty Images

After losing defensemen Nicklas Lidstrom and Brian Rafalski to retirement in back-to-back summers, the big question for the Detroit Red Wings entering this season was if their over two decade long playoff streak would come to an end.

That wasn’t an unfair question to ask and in fact they were barely able to squeeze into the playoffs. At the same time, Detroit has demonstrated once again that what makes them a truly special organization can’t be summed up in the presence of individual superstars.

The Red Wings are more than holding their own in the second round and are doing so with a blend of veterans and youngsters that are doing an admirable job taking the torch.

You can read more about Detroit’s win yesterday here, but let’s turn our attention to tonight’s actions.

Please keep in mind that both games can be watched online in addition to what’s listed below.

New York Rangers host Boston Bruins (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN)
Boston leads series 2-0

The Rangers managed to overcome a 2-0 deficit against the Washington Capitals in the first round, but Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist will need to lead the charge in order for them to do that again.

That might be a problem as Lundqvist’s left shoulder is an area of concern after he was stung by a Daniel Paille shot. He later said that the situation was “under control” and he’s expected to play, but it’s not clear if he’s truly 100%.

After allowing five goals on 32 shots in the latest Rangers loss, Lundqvist said that he needed to be better, but he would also need the guys in front of him to step up.

The Rangers have averaged just 2.22 goals per game in the playoffs. They have skilled forwards capable of stepping up, but they haven’t been reliable. Brad Richards in particular has been a disappointment and has logged 12:57 minutes or less in each of the Rangers’ last four games.

On top of that, New York still has a horrid 5.6% power-play success rate. With all that in mind, it seems unlikely that the Rangers will be able to keep up with the Bruins if Game 3 becomes a high-scoring contest.

San Jose Sharks host Los Angeles Kings (10 p.m. ET, NBCSN)
Los Angeles leads 2-1

Sharks forward Logan Couture came back from an injury to score the overtime game-winner on Saturday and keep San Jose in this series, but as Sharks coach Todd McLellan said, “We haven’t accomplished anything.” Not yet at least.

“If our intensity or urgency drops because we’ve won a single game, I would be disappointed in our group,” McLellan told ESPN.

Meanwhile Kings captain Dustin Brown pointed out that over the last two years, the Kings have both been down in a series 2-0 only to come back and have taken a 2-0 lead in series before.

“We know what they’re thinking,” Brown said. He added, “It’s a matter of having the killer instinct.”

There’s a lot of very talented players on both of these squads and both have a nice blend of young stars and veteran leadership. Couture was the hero in Game 3, but there’s a long list of players capable of stepping up and making the difference tonight.

  1. 13datsyuk13 - May 21, 2013 at 10:17 AM

    An article that should have nothing to do with Detroit still points out Lidstrom’s retirement. You guys are lazy!

    • jdillydawg - May 21, 2013 at 12:58 PM

      I thought the same thing. I thought maybe they just put the wrong headline on the article. If you’re going to lead with a headline, you might consider putting the news relating to the headline first in the article.

      Just a thought.

  2. sjsharks66 - May 21, 2013 at 10:22 AM

    Burns needs to put his ass in quicks face more. They need to screen him. He is an elite playoff goalie and they wont score if he can see all the shots going his way.

    Draw him out of the net.

    • joelwrobinson - May 21, 2013 at 2:25 PM

      Do you just look up hockey cliches to say every time they post about the sharks?

  3. peehergriphon - May 21, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    Quick is one of the best at goaltending and whining. Which one will he be good at tonight determines the outcome.

  4. blomfeld - May 21, 2013 at 11:21 AM


    As ironic as it may be, we Kings now need to borrow this famous ‘Ovi’ phrase and make it our very own ‘battle cry’ for tonight. Carter, Richards, Kopitar, Brown, Doughty and friends … come on you guys, it’s time to really give ’em hell and finish the job! It’s imperative that we score a minimum of 15 x goals ‘combined’ against the Sharks over the next two games, in-order to secure victory … and God willing friends, we’ll do it ! :)

    GO KINGS GO !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. jpelle82 - May 21, 2013 at 11:49 AM

    why is the boston game at 730 instead of 7? you know you have a 10 o clock game so why start at 730 so us on the east coast have to miss the 1st period of the 10 o clock game? annoying. 730 means they drop the puck at 7:40 plus the prime time commercial breaks, no way its done by 10 o clock start.

    • hrudey - May 21, 2013 at 11:56 AM

      It’s been a (pun already regretted) royal pain in the ass all postseason. Luckily the NHL network is carrying the start of the games until the early games end, but that’s not exactly DVR friendly so if you’re out of the house for any reason you’re pretty much SOL.

  6. sjsharks66 - May 21, 2013 at 2:36 PM

    Hey joel!! Missed you buddy. It has only been about 3 articles since you have stalked whatever I have to say on PRO HOCKEY TALK.

    Yeah.. Thats right. This is a place to talk about HOCKEY. The sharks need to do what I said to win. That is the main problem they have.

    Now the bigger question is. When will you bring anything positive or worth talking about in the articles you stalk me in?

    • blomfeld - May 21, 2013 at 10:20 PM

      sjsharksfan66 – don’t worry friend, as that type of ‘hateful’ freak literally abounds here at PHT … God only knows I’ve had my own fair share of them myself … anyway, it’s a ‘huge’ game tonight, so good luck and may the best team win … :)

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