After the Kings’ victory over the Winnipeg Jets Friday night, Bernie Nicholls was saying how important it was for the team to win.
“It’s always important to beat a team in your own division. But for us, we just needed to win. We had lost 4 of our last 5 games after a really good start, and we needed to get back to winning,” said Nicholls, who had a hat trick in the 7-4 victory.
The Kings will play the Jets again today before continuing on to Quebec on the 6-game trip. The Kings are still in second place in the Smythe Division at 6-4, behind Calgary (5-2-3). Winnipeg is last in the division at 2-4-2.
Winnipeg Coach Dan Maloney explained his team’s problem in Friday’s loss: “We were just losing our men on our coverage, and then other guys had to replace them to make the coverage for them, and we just started to run around. If you start running around with a team with offensive forwards like the Kings have, it doesn’t take them long to put it in the net.
“You can’t really key on one player. You’ve got to go out there and really do a good job as a five-man unit. Certainly, if you key on (Wayne) Gretzky, Nicholls gets the puck and vice versa. They can really come at you in a lot of offensive patterns.”