VANCOUVER – It was a strange sight for the Los Angeles Kings: star goaltender Jonathan Quick had an off night.
Quick allowed four goals on 23 shots as the Vancouver Canucks snapped the Kings’ five-game winning streak with a 5-2 decision on Saturday night.
It marked the first time since the opening night loss to the Chicago Blackhawks that last season’s Conn Smythe Trophy-winner gave up at least four goals in a game.
“I didn’t play well enough,” said Quick. “It doesn’t matter where you’re going to play (next), you’ve just got to turn it around, put it in the past and get ready for the next one.”
Los Angeles head coach Darryl Sutter admitted Quick had an off night. When asked if his star goalie was fighting the puck, Sutter interjected: “I agree”.
So what did the 27-year-old need to do in order to fix that?
“Not fight the puck,” Sutter replied.
Vancouver captain Henrik Sedin, who finished with two assists, seemed grateful for Quick’s bad outing.
“He seemed to be struggling a little bit,” said Sedin. “He looked maybe a little bit off, but he’s a world-class goaltender and we had him on a night maybe where he wasn’t seeing the puck as well.”
With the defeat, the Kings dropped to 10-7-2. But they can return to winning ways as early as Monday against the Nashville Predators at Los Angeles’ Staples Center, which is the start of a five-game homestand for the defending Stanley Cup champions.
The Kings played 11 of their first 15 games of the season on the road and centre Anze Kopitar is hopeful his team can improve on their 5-1-1 record on home ice.
“We knew there was going to be stretch at home and we want to make sure we are on top of our game and collecting points,” he said.
Kopitar extended his points streak to five games after recording an assist on Justin Williams’ equalizing goal early in the second period, but he didn’t believe the momentum generated by the recent winning streak had been snuffed out by this loss.
“(Vancouver) certainly came out strong and we didn’t quite match it,” the 25-year-old said. “There are going to be ups and downs. We just want to make sure we have more ups than downs, so there’s a game in two days which we’ve got to start focusing on and get ready for.”
True to form, Sutter had a different take on momentum.
“There’s no momentum in a 48-game schedule,” he said. “You win, you move on, you lose, you move on.”