After Game 2 on Sunday night, the Los Angles Kings seemed like a team lost in the Western Conference Finals. They had just lost back-to-back games to open the series against the Chicago Blackhawks. Their star goaltender had to be pulled half way through the game because he had given up four goals on 17 shots. Jonathan Quick was boasting a 1.50 goals against average in the playoffs and after Game 1 in which he looked like Superman, Game 2 was anything but stellar. For the first time in over two years, the Kings had given up more than three goals in a game; a streak that spanned 34 games.
The question coming into Game 3 was how the Kings and, more importantly Quick, would respond to the 0-2 deficit they found themselves in. Would they bounce back since they were at home or would the momentum Chicago seemed to have be enough to finish them off? This wasn’t the first time the Kings had been down 2-0 in series this year. The St. Louis Blues won the first two games of the opening round series with Los Angeles before the Kings rattled off six consecutive wins.
In Game 3, the Blackhawks made it easier for Quick. After facing 36 shots in game 1 and 17 shots half way through game 2, he only had to face 20 shots in Game 3. Only three of those shots came in the second period as well. The defense in front of Quick was impressive the entire night. Chicago was held at bay for the most part in the 3-1 win by Los Angeles. It was hard to imagine Quick would have another bad game after the last performance, especially being at home, but it helps when you don’t have to face as many shots in the game. Hopefully for Kings fans, Quick got the bad game out of his system and he is ready to go on another puck-stopping binge. We won’t know for sure but in Game 3–it sure did look like he was ready for another fix.