April 10, 2012
Canucks-Kings could be long, drawn-out affair
By RANDY SPORTAK, QMI AGENCY
The Los Angeles Kings were No. 2 in the NHL in goals-against thanks to a brilliant season by goalie Jonathan Quick.
The Vancouver Canucks were the fourth-best defensive squad, with Roberto Luongo carrying the bulk of the load.
The best-of-seven playoff series between these teams has the makings of a great goalie battle.
Certainly it has the makings of a low-scoring, seven-game series.
"You never know," Luongo sad. "They're a team that doesn't give up much. We know it may be hard for us to get goals and they're probably going to be one-goal games.
"We want to play within our system and try and grind them down. Whatever the result, if we get the 'W' at the end of the night, that's all we're worried about."
The difference between the clubs, though, is Vancouver was fifth in scoring, while the Kings were 29th. They did improve over the final six weeks, essentially after reuniting Jeff Carter with Mike Richards.
Therefore, Luongo will likely have to match Quick save for save.
"You want to be worried about their players, not their goalie. That's not my job," Luongo said. "But, it becomes a bit of a competition."
Kings coach Darryl Sutter stopped short of saying forward Jeff Carter will return to action after missing the last five games due to a deep bone bruise, but Carter told the media in Los Angeles he should be good to go ... The Kings will be without Brad Richardson, who had an appendectomy Tuesday. They summoned Andrei Loktionov from the minors ... The EA Sports computer predictions for the first round of the playoffs has the Canucks beating the Kings in six games ... It also says Henrik Sedin finishes with one goal and six assists, while Luongo posts a 1.73 goals-against average and one shutout.
On Twitter: @SUNRandySportak