What we learned from the Kings’ 5-3 loss to the Ottawa Senators
Here are a few more things to take away from the Kings’ 5-3 loss to the Ottawa Senators before taking the ice against their Southern California rivals, the Ducks, Sunday night in Anaheim. It will be their first game against the Ducks this season.
Baby, you’re a rich man
OK, so Anze Kopitar’s contract extension won’t kick in until next season.
But look at it this way: He won’t have to purchase any Powerball tickets on his way to the rink. The official announcement of Kopitar’s eight-year, $80-million agreement with the Kings came down a few hours before Saturday’s loss and the moment didn’t come with bells and whistles.
It was decidedly modest, just like the player himself.
“For me, it’s not going to change my game,” he said. “It’s not going to change my mind set. It’s the same way - be the best you can be and help your team win.”
Rare third-period collapse
The Kings had lost twice (in 19 games) this season when leading after two periods. On Saturday, it happened for the third time.
For the Kings, the way they lost -- errors abounded-- was concerning. Defenseman Jake Muzzin’s confusion and miscue led to the Senators’ third goal, an unassisted effort by Jean-Gabriel Pageau. Elsewhere, there was confusion between the Kings defense pair of Christian Ehrhoff and Luke Schenn, who each had a minus-two rating for the game.
The Kings led 2-1 after two periods and took a 3-1 lead early in the third. In all, they gave up four unanswered goals to the Senators.
“Obviously, it’s something you can’t do against any team just because when you make mistakes like that, every team is going to make you pay,” Kopitar said. “Very uncharacteristic of us, a two-goal lead. We blew that in a matter of minutes.
“The power-play goal they scored put them over the [top]. We definitely can’t be as sloppy as we were tonight.”
Issues throughout the lineup
Tanner Pearson-Jeff Carter-Dwight King were a combined minus-six against the Senators. Carter did score – his 13th of the season and 100th goal as a King.
Pearson is pointless in his last three games and has one goal in his last nine games. King scored twice in his first three games back after a long injury layoff but has one goal since then.
Vinny Lecavalier scored his first goal with the Kings, on the power play, and his first since last season when he was with the Philadelphia Flyers.
“We didn’t get much from top to bottom today,” Kings Coach Darryl Sutter said.
He was asked if the team had too much time off. The Kings had last played on Monday against the Detroit Red Wings.
“No, I’d like to only play one game a week,” Sutter said, sarcastically. “But I’d prefer to win it. Like the NFL.”