Will the nickname — Mr. Game 7 — find its way into deep storage for the summer months and get packed away, perhaps to be unveiled in future postseasons?
Williams and the Kings are three games away from winning their second Stanley Cup in three years. Granted, it's still a long road, but if Williams keeps scoring clutch goals maybe they won't require a bravura performance from Mr. Game 7 in Game 7.
"I'd like to call him Mr. Game 1, 2, 3 and 4," Kings defenseman
Said Kings left wing
Williams has eight goals and 20 points in this playoff run, and is 7-0 in career Game 7s, including three during this postseason.
"At first, it's maybe lucky, but then you see it over and over again," said Kings center
Of course, Williams is the man of many nicknames: Stick, JWill, Captain Clutch, Mr. Game 7 … and now Mr. Game 1. The accolades tend to embarrass him and he looked that way when Kings defenseman
Williams gave credit to Richards for setting up the goal and went on to talk about the ways the Kings need to improve for Game 2.
"We certainly don't want to make a habit out of this," Williams said of the sluggish start. "That is a world-class team up there with world-class offense. There could have been a lot of story lines tonight. They had a breakaway in the end of the third period [by
The running-on-fumes Kings survived a game full of dodgy moments, rallying from a 2-0 first-period deficit. They tied on it goals by Clifford at 17:33 of the first and a brilliant toe-drag goal by Doughty at 6:36 of the second, set up by Williams.
In fact, the Kings have played consecutive overtime games and required overtime in three of their last four games. They got better as they went along, outshooting the Rangers, 20-3, in the third period.
"I think [the Rangers] had a lot of energy and were fresh," Kings Coach
Sutter said that his goalie, Quick, was their best player, and Quick prevented the game from turning into a runaway in the opening period.
The Kings used an unusual combination for Game1 success. There were the usual suspects such as Quick and Doughty.
Then there was Clifford, who hadn't scored since Dec. 11 against Toronto, and had the goal and an assist.
Williams, though, has been their spiritual leader.
"I've said this many times: Justin is the most underrated player on our team by a mile," Doughty said. "He doesn't get enough credit for what he does. There are two guys on this team that I want to give the puck to, and that's him and Kopi [