Tag: Jeff Carter

2014 NHL Stanley Cup Final - Game Three

Carter not thinking about possible Stanley Cup and Olympic gold year


Jeff Carter stands on the verge of a very impressive championship season. Actually, so, too, does his teammate Drew Doughty.

Carter and Doughty have already won Olympic gold with Team Canada in Sochi. They’re both one victory away from a Stanley Cup with the L.A. Kings. They can achieve this feat Wednesday in Game 4 of the final series against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden.

But Carter, well, he says he’s not even thinking about that. The message from the Kings on Tuesday was that fourth win is the hardest to get.

“It’s not something I thought about, to be honest. We still got a long ways to go here,” Carter told reporters.

“We’re not looking ahead, we’re looking to tomorrow night. We know we’re going to have to be on top of our game, have to be ready.”

Carter has been a force in these playoffs, right now sitting second in NHL post-season overall scoring with 10 goals and 24 points. Doughty, the smooth-skating defenseman, has also been impressive, contributing offensively with 17 points. Wouldn’t you know it, they’re both in the conversation for the Conn Smythe Trophy.

Carter might not be looking too far ahead, focusing on the game and the work left to be done. Doughty can’t wait for the moment to arrive.

“I can’t wait to get out there,” said Doughty. “It kind of sucks that the game is at 8:00, waiting around during the day. You just want to get out there. You don’t want to get overanxious at the same time.

“But it’s fun to play in these types of games. When the pressure’s at a high, you just want to go out there, play your best as a team, win games. Yeah, I just can’t wait to get out there, get warmups over there, drop the first puck.”

Team chemistry showing as Kings close in on championship

2014 NHL Stanley Cup Final - Game Three

The L.A. Kings have shown in these Stanley Cup playoffs to be a remarkable team.

They beat the San Jose Sharks in historic fashion, came back to eliminate the Anaheim Ducks, knocked off the Chicago Blackhawks in overtime of the seventh game in the Western Conference Final and are now one win away from their second Stanley Cup championship in three years.

They have four players – Anze Kopitar, Jeff Carter, Justin Williams and Marian Gaborik – at the top of NHL post-season scoring and a goaltender in Jonathan Quick who isn’t necessarily lighting it up when it comes to statistics like save percentage and goals-against average, but has made the necessary saves at key times.

Mike Richards, with a contract of 12 years at $69 million and with the speculation of a buyout looming over his head, has still been able to chip in here and there offensively, gaining the praise of head coach Darryl Sutter just for his ability to contribute to a winning team.

Tanner Pearson has emerged, as have Jake Muzzin and Tyler Toffoli during this post-season.

The Kings are the epitome of a team. Jarret Stoll lauded the club’s chemistry, which could very much be celebrated when the Kings and New York Rangers meet in Game 4 on Wednesday, with L.A. needing only a win to clinch the silver chalice.

“We’ve got good guys in the room,” Stoll told LA Kings Insider.

“We’ve got good people. We’ve got guys that want to play the right way, aren’t selfish. There’s not one selfish guy in that room. We understand if there is a selfish guy in that room, we’ll either kick him out or he won’t play.

“That’s honestly the way it will work. Yeah, we all care about each other. There’s no cliques on our team. There’s no some guys going off here, some guys going off there.”

PHT Extra: Who should win the Conn Smythe Trophy?

Drew Doughty, Anze Kopitar

As you’ll see, we shot today’s PHT Extra perched high atop one of New York City’s many skyscrapers. It was surprisingly warm up there, and we weren’t scared at all.

Two questions for discussion:

1. Do the Rangers have any shot of coming back in this thing?

2. When/if the Kings win, who should receive the Conn Smythe Trophy — Drew Doughty, Anze Kopitar, Justin Williams, Jeff Carter, or Marian Gaborik?

PHT Morning Skate: Reflecting on Bylsma’s fall

Dan Bylsma

Today’s an off day after the Los Angeles Kings took a 3-0 series lead last night, so instead we’re highlighting some of the headlines from around the hockey world:

A look back at Dan Bylsma, what he did for the Pittsburgh Penguins, and his fall since the start with the 2014 Winter Olympics. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

Jonathan Quick’s shutout last night was the first one at Madison Square Garden in the Stanley Cup Final since 1972. The Kings also became the first team since 2004 to win a Stanley Cup Final game despite recording 15 or fewer shots. (NHL.com)

Mark Messier talks about his involvement in a nine-rink facility being built in the Bronx. (Puck Daddy)

Jeff Carter became the fourth player in Los Angeles Kings history to score at least 10 goals in a single postseason run. Of course, Marian Gaborik is also on that list. (LA Kings Insider)

St. John’s goalie Michael Hutchinson kicked out 49 shots to even the AHL Calder Cup Final against the Texas Stars at 1-1. (AHL.com)

One level below that, the Alaska Aces have swept the Cincinnati Cyclones to win the 2014 ECHL Kelly Cup championship. (ECHL.com)

Coronation close: Kings blank Rangers, one win away from Stanley Cup


LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Kings as close as they can get to hoisting Lord Stanley’s Mug.

The Rangers, meanwhile, couldn’t feel further away from it.

That was the story from Madison Square Garden on Monday night, as the Kings dispatched of the Rangers 3-0 in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final, taking a commanding 3-0 series lead to move within one victory of their second Cup in three years.

On a night of storylines, it’s hard to say which was more compelling — L.A. continuing its uncanny ability to grind out results, or New York getting absolutely deflated in what, heading in, was hyped as the biggest hockey game in the city in the last 20 years.

The acts of deflation were plenty, and consistent. Jonathan Quick took the air out of MSG in the early stages of the opening period, saving  what looked to be a Mats Zuccarello goal with his paddle. Then, at the tail end of the frame, Jeff Carter sucked further life out of the arena by scoring with 0.8 seconds left — to give L.A. its first lead of the series.

Even though the deficit was one goal, you got the feeling the Rangers were cooked.

Some of it had to do with that deflating feeling, but most of it had to do with Quick. The Kings goalie put forth his best effort of the Stanley Cup Final — and, really, his best effort in a couple of weeks, given his struggles in the Chicago series — finishing with a 32-save shutout for his first clean sheet since Game 5 of the opening series against San Jose.

While Quick was doing his thing, his L.A. teammates continued to add to their lead.

Jake Muzzin scored his sixth of the playoffs on the power play early in the second period, and Mike Richards scored his third at 17:17 to cap off the scoring for good. While this was happening, New York kept finding new ways to let the air out of the building — the Rangers went 0-for-6 on the power play in Game 3, putting them at 1-for-14 overall in the series.

For the Rangers, tonight’s game was the latest in a series filled with frustration and disappointment. The Rangers blew four two-goal leads in the opening two games in L.A. and couldn’t muster a win despite twice taking the Kings to overtime; on Monday, the Blueshirts failed to take advantage of a loud, partisan home crowd that seemed desperate for something to cheer for.

Looking ahead, the Rangers also now face the prospect of having to deal with a dialed-in Quick, who hasn’t allowed a goal in over 110 minutes of action.

For the Kings, tonight’s game got them to the brink of another Cup, and provided some symmetry. The script is eerily similar to how they won the Cup in 2012. — two years ago, they beat the Devils in OT in the opening two games before capturing Game 4 by a 4-0 scoreline; this year, they again won two overtime games to start the series before capturing the third, 3-0.

The 2012 Stanley Cup Final did end up going to Game 6, though, which begs the question: Will the Rangers find a way to extend this series on Wednesday, or will we see our first finals sweep since Detroit broomed Washington in 1998?