Manor Projected Lineups: LA Kings at St. Louis Blues; Triple Chrome Week

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Following a successful stint on home ice, the Kings aim to carry that momentum on the road this week as they prepare to take on the Blues tonight in St. Louis. For the first of three road games in four days, this will be an opportunity for head coach Jim Hiller and his group to create some more distance from a team that is chasing them in the Western Conference standings. Currently, the Kings are eight points ahead of the Blues with just 17 contests remaining in the regular season.

The two clubs have split a pair of games thus far this season, with each team winning on home ice. However, the Blues 4-3 win in January was an overtime affair; thus, the Kings still earned a point.

Some keys heading into this matchup will be the discipline shown by LA. Although they have the number one penalty kill in the league, they have been taking far too many penalties for Hiller’s liking. The Kings committed five minor penalties in Monday’s win over the New York Islanders. Sure, all five penalties were killed off successfully, yet that was ten minutes of game time in which line combinations and ice time became somewhat jumbled. Lately, it has been a challenge for the Kings to settle into any sort of consistent rhythm during a game because they have often been short-handed.

On display once again during Monday’s 3-0 victory was the lethal shot of Adrian Kempe. It was his first tally since returning from injury and can perhaps be something that Kempe builds off of going forward.

There are two obvious questions for Hiller at the moment (a) how long will Arthur Kaliyev sit, putting the Kings in an 11+7 configuration and (b) how will he play his goaltenders on this trip? Despite Cam Talbot playing some of his best hockey of the season since the All-Star break, David Rittich has more than earned his share of ice time as well, posting his second shutout since Hiller took over in the Kings last game, and now holding a .919 save percentage since being recalled from AHL Ontario when Pheonix Copley went down with a knee injury.

For now, Talbot looks to get the nod; indicating that Hiller is looking to play whoever he feels gives his team the best chance to win, regardless of previous play.

A quick note on the injury front, Viktor Arvidsson did not travel with the team when they left LA, even though he is eligible to return from LTIR this coming Saturday when the team is in Dallas. Instead, management opted to have him stay in SoCal so he could continue to skate on his own and work with the development staff in El Segundo. He hasn’t been ruled out for Saturday just yet, though.

Statistically Speaking


— Drew Doughty is riding a five-game point streak (1G, 5A) against the Blues, dating back to Oct. 31, 2022. His longest point streak vs. St. Louis is seven games from Jan. 12, 2017 – Jan. 21, 2019 (2G, 5A).

— The Kings have scored the Blues 24-14 over their last five meetings, with LA putting up at least three goals in each of those contests.

— Quinton Byfield (19G, 28A) is one goal away from recording his first career 20-goal season. The last Kings player to record at least 20 goals in a season at age 21 or younger was Anze Kopitar (27G in 2008-09).

— Entering tonight, Kopitar’s 62 career points vs. St. Louis (20G, 42A) are the second-most points among all active NHL skaters. Kopitar is the only Pacific Division skater with 20 or more goals vs. the Blues; Patrick Kane (28) and Jamie Benn (22) are the only other active skaters with 20 or more goals against the Blues, largely coming with two Central Division teams.

— In 17 career games vs. St. Louis, PL Dubois has 11 points, including seven goals.

— Tonight will mark the first of three straight games with the Kings wearing their 90s era alternate jerseys and chrome helmets.

— LA’s penalty kill has gone 39 straight games without allowing multiple power-play goals, dating back to Dec. 13 vs. Winnipeg. It is the longest such streak in franchise history.

Kings Projected Lineup vs. Blues


Byfield – Kopitar – Kempe
Moore – Danault – Fiala
Turcotte – Dubois – Laferriere
Lewis – Lizotte

Anderson – Doughty
Gavrikov – Roy
Englund – Spence
Moverare

Talbot (starter)
Rittich

Likely scratches: Kaliyev

LTIR: Arvidsson, Copley, Grundstrom

Key Game Info


Puck drop is set for 4:30 pm Pacific Time and will be televised by Bally Sports.

Across the Ice


St. Louis is coming off a 5-1 victory over Boston on Monday.

Here’s how they lined up for that one:

Schenn – Thomas – Kyrou
Bolduc – Buchnevich – Neighbours
Saad – Hayes – Kapanen
Toropchenko – Sundqvist – Walker

Leddy – Parayko
Krug – Kessel
Perunovich – Faulk

Hofer

In their last 10 games overall, the Blues are 4-5-1. As the home team, they’re 18-11-1 this season.

On This Day in Kings History

On March 13, 2000, the @LAKings acquired Kelly Buchberger and Nelson Emerson from the Atlanta Thrashers for Donald Audette and Frantisek Kaberle. Buchberger recorded 36 points and 193 PIMs in 169 games, and Emerson scored 31 points in 124 games with the #LAKings.#GoKingsGo pic.twitter.com/oKmKYzkKPE

— The Kingstorian (@Kingstorian) March 13, 2024


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