Previewing the Los Angeles Kings' 2013-14 season:
Game 45 vs. Boston
January 9, 2014
7:30pm PST (10:30pm EST)
It's been a while but on Thursday, the Los Angeles Kings will meet the Boston Bruins for the first time since the 2011-12 season with the B's winning both games of the season series. This season, the two clubs will meet twice more beginning on January 9 and ending on the 20th in Beantown.
At 28-13-2, the Bruins are first in the Atlantic Division but coming off a loss in Anaheim on Tuesday night. Nevertheless, the Bruins and Kings enter Staples Center on Thursday as the only two teams in the NHL to have allowed less than 100 goals this season.
While they are a very impressing 18-4-2 on home ice, the Bruins are just 10-9-0 away from home. Of course, they may have some good luck on their side as the Kings come in to Thursday having lost six of their last seven while scoring just 10 goals during that stretch. Said offensive slump was most notable on Tuesday night when they hosted the Minnesota Wild. En route to their shootout loss, the Kings peppered the Wild with 40 shots but only managed to score once while getting stymied by netminder Darcy Kuemper on all three attempts in the shootout.
Having registered an assist last game, Jeff Carter looks to continue his streaking ways for Los Angeles as he enters Thursday with the team lead in goals with 15 as four of those came in his last six outings. For Boston, Daniel Paille has scored four goals in his last four games while veteran Jarome Iginla, who meets the Kings for the first time not wearing a Flames uniform, has five goals in his last seven games.
The Bruins are missing some key players, as well. Chris Kelly, Loui Eriksson and Dennis Seidenberg are all out while Milan Lucic did miss his last game but it's unclear whether he'll be able to go on Thursday. This should pose an advantage to the Kings who have a clean bill of health but in all fairness, the same thing was said entering their matchup with the Wild a couple nights earlier - and we all know how that ended up.
It's a battle of two of the last three Stanley Cup champions as the more recent winner looks to rediscover their scoring touch en route to a key win.
Enjoy the game!