August 20, 2014

Quick start puts Blues in 2-0 series hole

Los Angeles Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick deflects the puck with his glove as St. Louis Blues Jason Arnott takes a stick to the head. UPI/Bill Greenblatt

The Los Angeles Kings scored just 31 seconds into the game, and jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the opening 20 minutes of play. The #8 seed in the Western Conference heads home up 2-0 in this series with a 5-2 win over the St. Louis Blues Monday night at Scottrade Center.

The Blues were caught on their heels as they failed to get a shot on goal for nearly 10 minutes into the game. Meanwhile, the Kings jumped all over the Blues. Mike Richards scored L.A.’s first goal after Dustin Penner drove in from the side of the net. The puck slid out front where Richards buried it over a sprawled out Brian Elliott for the first goal.

After killing off two power plays, the Blues went on one of their own, but a turnover in their end resulted in a shorthanded goal by Anze Kopitar, putting the Kings up 2-0 at 14:16 of the period. L.A. scored twice again in the final 1:23 to make it a 4-0 lead.

Andy McDonald scored just 18 seconds into the start of the second period, but any momentum that the sellout crowd was hoping to generate for the home team quickly died when Justin Williams scored 1:08 later for a 5-1 lead. The Blues tacked on another goal by Matt D’Agostini early in the third.

This was one of the rare games where goaltender Elliott didn’t look as sharp, but the defense in front of him certainly let him down. However, Elliott will be the guy. Coach Ken Hitchcock ruled out Jaroslav Halak who will miss this series with a lower body injury.