The Kings and Ducks quickly reminded fans Sunday that their hatred for one another can escalate quickly. Corey Perry leveled Alec Martinez. Brayden McNabb put a big hit on Sami Vatanen. There were two fights, more big hits and a continuation of the general nastiness that ensues when the two teams get together.
There were also two new players that came to the forefront in the Kings’ 3-2 win at Honda Center.
Here’s what we learned:
Vincent Lecavalier is fitting in
Lecavalier was thought to be finished after the Philadelphia Flyers couldn’t get him going, and it said a lot that his trade to the Kings partly hinged on his retirement.
But Lecavalier, 35, has so far proved to be a shrewd acquisition. He’s a veteran player accepting and thriving in a lesser role. Lecavalier has two goals in his last two games and handles blue-collar aspects such as faceoffs and penalty killing.
“I’m feeling good,” Lecavalier said. “[Saturday, against Ottawa], it was just nice to get the first [goal] out of the way but ... it was a long time since I scored and it was nice to get it in. It builds confidence.
“I still have to get better, but every game is high tempo and it’s a great hockey, so it’s a lot fun, for sure, to be able to play.”
David Perron has potential
Perron arrived in Anaheim after a long flight and, with no practice, was thrown into a rivalry game. He was on the ice for two goals before Ducks Coach Bruce Boudreau moved him from Carl Hagelin’s second-line left wing spot to a line with Ryan Getzlaf and Chris Stewart. He scored on a long wrist shot.
“You could tell he’s got skill,” Boudreau said. “The shot he took was a skill shot. I look for bigger things from him.”
Perron hopes so too. His better seasons were with St. Louis, and he didn’t downplay the notion that his trade to Anaheim from Pittsburgh late Friday was an attempt to revive his career by being back in the Western Conference.
“I can’t say I was shocked, to be honest with you,” Perron said. “ As a player you want to fit in in a group. For some reason, it didn’t work out personally the way I would like and they would like over there. I like a lot of people in that organization and they said some nice things about me ... now it’s another chance here and I’m going to look to make the most of it.”