*On a side note, this is pretty good proof that the guy in charge of NHL conspiracies doesn’t pay much attention to stats, since anyone who spent 20 seconds looking at them would realize the Kings actually score MORE on the PK.
That, or the weirdly lazy way the Kings kept getting caught out of position, allowing multiple odd man rushes and being forced to commit penalties to make up for it. It’s only through the grace of, you guessed it, Jonny Quick that the Kings weren’t losing worst after the first.
The second looked a lot better — the Kings only managed 6 shots in the first, and had that many by 5 minutes into the second — but it didn’t matter as the Yotes got a marker from (checks box score) Marc-Antoine Pouliot? (I genuinely thought the announcers had it wrong when they said Pouliot, as I was positive he was on Boston — no, sorry, that’s Benoit.) And how much did the Senior VP of Conspiracies have to pay Slava Voynov to try and shoot on Quick?
The third was criminally boring because of the attitude of playing for OT, which still seems to be prevalent even though there is no benefit in going to overtime except the opportunity to play on better ice. Indeed, what with the massive east coast bias, you’d think the Conspiracy Wizards would be reluctant to keep us right-coasters up past midnight. At least they managed to call the most loathed penalty in the rulebook with 36 seconds left. Guess they didn’t care for the LA home game 6 as much as I thought they would.
Dustin Penner put the final nail in the Coyotes’ coffin at 17:42 into the fourth, at which point Shane Doan and Mike Smith started some rough stuff for reasons unfathomable, and for which they both received an utterly pointless game misconduct. The unkindness continued through the handshake line, as the Coyotes took it in turn to, er, tell Dustin Brown what they really thought of him. Dustin Penner actually had to pull Brown away from Hanzal.
If you’re wondering, Dustin Brown declined to touch the Campbell Bowl.
(Typing Dustin six times in these paragraphs just made me think about it too much. What a weird name. Dustin. Dustin. Dustin.)
Regardless of the outcome, it was an impressive run for a team most people write off as pathetic and unloved. It raised the profile of a team generally used as a punchline for ignored and desperately poor franchises. They had a moment in the national spotlight and didn’t embarrass themselves against a nigh-invincible Kings team. I’m proud of the furballs, and I hope they remain in Phoenix for years to come.