Game 12: Tampa Bay Lightning at Los Angeles Kings
In a game that was supposed to be a great matchup of two hot teams, the stalemate battle on the ice was overshadowed in the end by poor officiating and a game that deteriorated into penalties and cheap shots. In the third game of the roadtrip out West, the Lightning fell 1-0 against the Los Angeles Kings.
Both teams spent much of the first and second period in what could be called underwhelming on the action front. It was due to the Kings trying to adapt to the 1-3-1 play of the Lightning with tight checking and some penalties that stopped the flow of play. In the first period, Mattias Ohlund took a five-minute boarding major when he drove Dustin Brown into the boards. The Kings don't respond in the five minute powerplay and end up with their sold out arena voicing their displeasure at their lack of effectiveness on the PP.
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The second period continued at much the same pace as the first, with not many chances to be had. Anze Kopitar did have a breakaway opportunity midway though but Kubina's well placed stick and Mike Smith was able to stop the puck. As a positive from the game, Mike Smith looked like he was solid in net for the Lightning.
The third period is where it starts to get interesting. At 5:20 of the third period Mathieu Roy's pass attempt gets caught in the skates of Dana Tyrell which Ryan Smythe takes away to feed an open Justin Williams. In a bit of a spin move, he gets the Kings up 1-0.
Shortly after, Drew Doughty takes a charging penalty for a check from behind on Steve Downie. In true Downie fashion, he would not be able to just focus on the hockey game, and instead after a failed hit on Doughty, got himself a fighting major from a fight with Willie Mitchell and a game misconduct. We can debate if you think the attempted hit on Doughty was clean or not in the comments.
After Downie was tossed from the game, the poor officiating really began to snowball. But I'm not going to dwell on it. In the end the Lightning were not able to score an equalizer and ended up losing the game 1-0. Jonathan Quick made 24 saves in his shutout, and Mike Smith stopped 25 out of 26 shots