Saturday, December 26, 2009

Addition and Subtraction in Phoenix

Ryan Smyth in, Justin Williams out. Is it really that surprising? After all, it is the LA Kings...a team notorious for doing things the hard way. For the better part of a month it's been that way and why should it change now.

While many Kings players and fans were downright giddy about the reuniting of the top line prior to the game, those visions of sugarplums dancing in their heads have gone sour yet again. Williams broke his right leg before the game was even five minutes old.

It was just one of those things. He was tangled up in the corner with Ed Jovanovski and Anze Kopitar. Unfortunately for him, he got the worst of things. No timetable has been established for his return and more details should be available late Sunday afternoon.

As for the rest of the game...well, they say Captains need to be leaders. Dustin Brown certainly did his job then. He put the Kings on the board first, not long after the team had to watch Williams carted off on a stretcher agonizing in pain.

Much of the pregame buzz centered on Smyth's return and Frolov being left off the Russian Olympic roster yesterday. Perhaps Brownie was making his final push before the Team USA group is announced on Friday. Interestingly, another hopeful for the Vancouver games, Michal Handzus (Slovakia), scored the other Kings goal.

It was a tie game up until about the half way mark of the third period. Then, the Coyotes went up 3-2 and that was pretty much it. A power play in the final minutes of the game for LA provided some excitement, but nothing made it past Phoenix netminder Ilya Bryzgalov.

The loss was only the second for the Kings this season against a Pacific division foe. Both came against the Coyotes.

Two points lost. A top-6 player lost. Not a good night.


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