Sports

Kings on the lookout for swarming Sharks

SportsLos Angeles KingsKyle CliffordDrew DoughtyDustin Brown (ice hockey)Anze KopitarSlava Voynov

One of the lasting impressions of Game 1 between the Kings and San Jose was the sight of fourth-line Sharks agitator Mike Brown leaning hard with his shoulder into Kings defenseman Slava Voynov, knocking Voynov into Kings goalie Jonathan Quick.

Quick went clattering to the side of the net and chaos ensued, not even five minutes into the series.

That welcome-to-the-playoffs moment on Thursday night may have stood out, but it was hardly the only defining physical example in the Sharks' 6-3 win.

"I think they're trying to run a lot of our top players," Kings defenseman Drew Doughty said. "I know, me personally, they were running me every chance they had. They were finishing me way after I moved the puck.

"They were doing the same to Kopi [Anze Kopitar] and actually they did the same to Quickie, running him right off the bat. That's obviously in their game plan. I think our top guys need to be ready for that and, at the same time, we need to be giving it to their top guys."

Game 2 will be Sunday at 7 p.m. at SAP Center in San Jose after the Kings had two days in Los Angeles to hit the refresh button, practice in El Segundo, and, in the case of left wing Kyle Clifford, greet the newest member of the family, Brody Hudson, who was born on Friday night.

"Everybody is healthy, everybody good," Clifford said of his son, who weighed in at 71/2 pounds. "Mom's happy, so everything is good."

The Sharks' Brown, in fact, was at the hospital himself before Game 1 for the birth of his second child, Zane Michael, on Wednesday.

Maybe he can compare notes with Clifford after their next confrontation in the corners.

The Sharks have been blunt the last couple of days in saying they plan on deploying the same tactics to get Quick off his game.

"With a goalie like Quickie, maybe that's one of the only ways to beat him is to get in front of him," said Kings captain Dustin Brown. "It's much the same with their goalie. That's one thing, we need to get around their net a lot harder. Part of that is getting the puck first, and once we have it getting the puck to the net with guys there.

"I can't go through all their goals, but there was a few he didn't see because there was so much traffic. You're not going to beat Quickie straight up very often."

After Game 1, Kings Coach Darryl Sutter said he didn't do a good enough job of preparing the players, talking about the early onslaught by the Sharks. Then again, it could have been an attempt to take away some of the focus on how poorly the team played.

"We had a decent start, then that first goal threw us off and we made a couple more turnovers that are not really us," Kopitar said. "The line change and a turnover, on top of that. That all happening in the last minute of the first period.

"That's definitely not us. There's no secret to it. We've got to sharpen up in that department and manage the puck through the neutral zone a little bit better and that's what we're looking to do tomorrow."

Doughty was hurt at San Jose near the end of the regular season, missing the final four games because of an injured shoulder. Thursday was his first game back, and he said he would be better in Game 2.

"I thought I played pretty well," Doughty said. "I made two bad turnovers for grade-A scoring chances. They luckily didn't score on either one. Besides that, I thought I played really well. I just had those two turnovers that were pretty costly that I would like to get back. But that's just kind of getting the first game out of the way. I'll be better next game and I've got to be."

lisa.dillman@latimes.com

Twitter: @reallisa

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SportsLos Angeles KingsKyle CliffordDrew DoughtyDustin Brown (ice hockey)Anze KopitarSlava Voynov
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