A dose of perspective. How other teams blog the Kings:
Honestly, this was your typical preseason game: Several fights (Brett Westgarth and Raitis Ivanans tangled twice in the first — the P.A. epically botched Ivanans’ name both times), and several signs that certain players are true NHLers who have adjusted to the speed at this level and exert a sense of calm, while others are clearly nervous rookies. In that former group I’d include Josh Bailey, Jon Sim, the Islanders’ veteran blueliners, plus the Kings’ Drew Doughty and Wayne Simmonds. My god, is Doughty good. The teams traded goals in the first, with an excellent Tambellini-to-Hunter combo setting Andy Sutton up at the doorstep. Yes, Andy Sutton scoring from the doorstep.
The first and third periods were exciting and physical; the second was an absolute dud and special teams disaster for the Islanders. After The Other Westgarth picked up 4 minutes trying to goad an unwilling Micheal Haley into a fight, the Islanders promptly: 1) Gave up a shorthanded goal; 2) took a penalty to even it up; 3) took another penalty to give the Kings a 5-on-3, which Doughty converted on a pretty backdoor goal.
I honestly don’t know if the Islanders penalty kill was that truly awful, or if the Kings power play is that amazing. But the Kings controlled the puck the entire time when they were on the power play. It was constant tape-to-tape…to tape…to tape passing. It was as if they were Harlem Globetrotters just screwing around in the preseason, curious about what looks they could get.
The Islanders had penalty killers like Nate Thompson, Tim Jackman and Jon Sim out there, so it was a little alarming.