Jan 25, 2014; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Anaheim Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller (1) looks to make a save as Anaheim Ducks defenseman Francois Beauchemin (23) and Los Angeles Kings defenseman Willie Mitchell (33) look on during the Stadium Series hockey game at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Kings – Anaheim Ducks Freeway Faceoff 4.0: A Preview


Jan 25, 2014; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Anaheim Ducks right wing Tim Jackman (18) works to screen Los Angeles Kings goalie Jonathan Quick (32) as Los Angeles Kings defenseman Drew Doughty (8) defends during the Stadium Series hockey game at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

 

LOS ANGELES KINGS vs ANAHEIM DUCKS – FREEWAY FACEOFF

Fourth of five games between the two teams

DATE/TIME:  Saturday, March 15, 2014, 7:30 p.m.

TV:  Fox Sports West and Prime Ticket

PLACE:  Staples Center

SEASON SERIES TO DATE:  Ducks lead, 2 games to 1

 

KINGS CURRENT RECORD:

38-22-6, 82 points

Third place in the Pacific Division, 6th place in the Western Conference

*Won last eight in a row (going into the March 13th game vs the Toronto Maple Leafs)

DUCKS CURRENT RECORD:

43-16-7, 93 points

First place in the Pacific Division, 2nd place in the Western Conference

*Lost last four in a row

 

 

KINGS LEADERS:

Anze Kopitar – 20 goals, 35 assists, 55 points

Jeff Carter – 24 goals, 19 assists, 43 points

Jonathan Quick – 2.02 GAA

DUCKS LEADERS:

Ryan Getzlaf – 29 goals, 42 assists, 71 points

Corey Perry – 35 goals, 31 assists, 66 points

Jonas Hiller – 2.34 GAA

 

The last time these two NHL teams met, it was under very interesting circumstances.

They played on a baseball diamond a few miles north of downtown L.A., complete with a sand volleyball pit, a bandstand where the rock group KISS played between periods, and a pre-game fanfare featuring the USC marching band.

The Ducks pretty much dominated that game, beating a offensive-deficient Kings team 3-0 in front of what was the largest crowd to ever see a hockey game on the west coast.

Judging by the fact that the Kings have won their last eight contests – going into their match with the Toronto Maple Leafs tonight – and the Ducks have lost their last four games, it’s safe to say that much has changed since that historical Winter Classic game at Dodger Stadium this past January.

The recent Olympic break was just what the Kings needed as they have taken seven games in a row since the flame was extinguished in Sochi, Russia.

Meanwhile their Orange County counterparts, after being so dominant that a berth in the Stanley Cup finals seemed like a mere formality, have fallen on hard times.

A 7-2 shellacking by a mediocre Calgary Flames team last night is a very good illustration of that.

Despite that, the Ducks remain in first place in the division, and only the St. Louis Blues have more points among the NHL’s 30 teams to this point.

And like other crosstown rivalries (read: UCLA – USC) the cliche of “You throw the records out” will most likely apply here as there’s no better way for Anaheim to get back on track than against their I-5 rivals.

As for the Kings, I’m sure they won’t look past the Maple Leafs tonight, as that has been a factor for their recent success.

Even though 50,000 people won’t be watching, the hockey fans in SoCal will be looking forward to this latest edition of the Kings-Ducks rivalry as much as they did at Chavez Ravine.

Particularly since there is but a few weeks left in the regular season and both L.A. area teams are trying to get as good a seed as they can for the playoffs.

So expect an entertaining, hard-fought match that may not have as much history and significance as the Bruins and the Trojans, but is quite intense in its own right.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tags: Anaheim Ducks Featured Freeway Faceoff Los Angeles Kings NHL Popular Stanley Cup

Comments are closed.