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Kings Blunder Through Wild Overtime Loss

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Kings goalie Jonathan Quick two giveaways aided by some very questionable calls from the referees could have spelled doom. Somehow the Kings managed to salvage a point by getting the game to overtime where they lost 3-2 against the Minnesota Wild on Brent Burns’ power-play goal.

“You spot a team two goals, it’s tough to get two points out of it,” Quick said. But he wasn’t happy with the outcome.

“It’s extremely unfortunate. We outplayed them for the majority of that game.”

Quick’s first mistake came at 2:49 in the first period during the Kings power-play. Quick left the crease to play the puck pushing it to the waiting stick of a rushing Mikko Koivu who slapped it into the vacated net a second later.

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The second came a mere nine seconds after Dustin Brown had tied things up at 9:25 in the second period. After the center ice faceoff, Quick went to play the puck behind the net when Cal Clutterbuck skated through took the puck and dinked it into the net.

“I feel a big responsibility for the loss,” Quick said. “I’ve just got to be better, can’t make those mistakes.”

Having said that it’s not like the Wild were Fort Knox. They couldn’t keep their sticks on the ice giving the Kings nine power-play opportunities including a four-minute high sticking double-minor by Antti Miettinen late in the third period. But aside from Ryan Smyth’s power-play goal early in the third period that tied the game, the Kings couldn’t do anything on the power-play.

“It’s been a struggle for us all year,” Brown said about the power-play. “We’ve got to work on it and figure it out.

“It’s something that’s a work in progress.”

Of course that’s the rhetoric being used since the first game of the season, so what exactly do they need to do?

“It’s really about the right decision making,” Brown elaborated. “Sometimes we’re making a difficult play when there’s an easier play available.”

Head coach Terry Murray is worried.

“It is a concern because when you take a look at our power play, it’s dropping percentage wise, and that has to be good when you want to be a good hockey club in this league.”

Beyond the ugly hits, beyond the bad giveaways, beyond the awful power-plays there was the officiating. The first officiating call came just 16 seconds into the game when a goal on Drew Doughty’s shot from the point was disallowed because Anze Kopitar made incidental contact with Wild goalie Jose Theodore.

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While that seemed valid it went downhill from there. A phantom goalie interference call on Ryan Smyth. A high sticking not being called as Smyth was flailing on the ice with the referee only a couple of feet away. A phantom interference call on Doughty in overtime that led to the Wild’s winning goal.

But c’est la vie, que sera sera. The Kings will have to flush this out of their minds as they head on off to the oasis that is known as Detroit to start a five-game, eight-day road trip on Monday.

TONIGHT’S ACTION

LA Lakers at New Jersey Nets. 10:00 a.m. KCAL9, AM 710 KSPN.

Orlando Magic at LA Clippers. 6:30 p.m. FS Prime Ticket, AM 980 KFWB.

Minnesota Wild at Anaheim Ducks. 5:00 p.m. FSWest, AM 830 KLAA.

NFL Schedule

10:00 a.m.
Oakland Raiders at Jacksonville Jaguars. CBS, AM 830 KLAA.

1:00 p.m.
Kansas City Chiefs at San Diego Chargers. CBS, AM 570 KLAC.

5:15 p.m.
Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys. NBC, AM 570 KLAC.