NHL Preview from The Sports Network |
Wednesday, March 24th
(All times eastern)
Los Angeles Kings (28-24-16-7) at Vancouver Canucks (37-24-10-5), 10 p.m.
(Sports Network) - A pair of struggling teams face off this evening, as the
Los Angeles Kings battle the Vancouver Canucks at General Motors Place.
Los Angeles has lost four in a row -- all at home -- and five of its last six
overall. On Monday, Ryan Smyth scored late in the third period to snap a tie
and lift the Edmonton Oilers to a 2-1 victory over the Kings in a crucial
Western Conference matchup at Staples Center.
The Oilers moved into a tie with Nashville for the seventh and eighth playoff
spots in the West with 82 points. St. Louis is ninth, one point behind, while
the Kings are now three points off the pace.
The Kings start a four-game road trip against Northwest Division opponents,
and will continue it with games in Edmonton, Calgary and Colorado.
Despite the loss, Kings star Luc Robitaille had an assist to become the all-
time leader in points for a left wing with 1,370. He surpassed the mark of
1,369 set by John Bucyk.
Meanwhile, the Canucks were handed a loss by the Columbus Blue Jackets on
Sunday. Nikolai Zherdev scored a pair of goals and assisted on another during
a three-goal third period to lead the Blue Jackets to a 5-4 victory.
Artem Chubarov scored twice for Vancouver, which blew a 4-2 lead with 11 1/2
minutes remaining. Brendan Morrison and Henrik Sedin also scored for the
Canucks and Johan Hedberg made just 18 saves.
The Canucks fell to 1-3-2-1 since Todd Bertuzzi was suspended for the season
after his attack on Colorado's Steve Moore on March 8.
Vancouver is currently fifth in the Western Conference playoff chase, two
The Canucks, 0-3-2 in their last five home games, will play the third test of
a four-game stand Saturday against Dallas.
Vancouver is unbeaten in three games (2-0-1) against Los Angeles this season.
However, the Kings are 3-0-2 in their last five trips to Vancouver.
03/24 10:16:59 ET