Trevor Lewis picked the right night to step up for the Los Angeles Kings, his shorthanded goal being the turning point of tonight’s game against the St. Louis Blues. Shorthanded goals are rare in the NHL, and when they do happen, they create incredible momentum for the team that scores them.
Lewis, who had no goals, and one assist on the year coming into the game, also recorded an assist on Dwight King‘s goal. He basically tripled his offensive production for the year in one night. Grinders like Lewis do not often make the score sheet, but when they do, it can create special nights for them.
Tonight was that night for Lewis, who definitely took the wind out of St. Louis’s sail with that goal. The Blues had been on the doorstep with solid play and a few good PP opportunities. Giving up a shorthanded goal in that situation was definitely inexcusable.
Shorthanded goals are, by nature, exciting and highly unpredictable. There are often shorthanded opportunities, but it can be difficult to finish when you are down a skater. Sometimes, teams are not willing to take a chance and perhaps give up a quick chance in the other direction if a save is made or a shot is blocked.
For the Kings, however, it is normal to be challenging shorthanded. Though they are not yet at the top of the NHL leader board in terms of shorthanded goals, I would not be surprised to see Los Angeles making its way back towards the top in this category. Maybe this goal could spur them towards a streak of shorthanded goals.
This win for the Kings definitely helps them establish themselves as a prominent Cup contender this season. These match-ups are a way for the teams involved to be able to size each other up for the playoffs.
In the postseason, it is often unheralded players that produce beyond the expectations placed upon them. Perhaps this year, Lewis will be that kind of a player for the Los Angeles Kings.