Found April 23, 2012 on
Fox Sports Midwest:
ST. LOUIS - Arguably the two hottest goalies in the NHL will meet when the St. Louis Blues and Los Angeles Kings meet in the Western Conference semifinals beginning later this week.
The second-seeded Blues reached the second round by defeating the San Jose Sharks in five games while the eighth-seeded Kings pulled off a shocker by upsetting the Presidents Trophy winning Vancouver Canucks in five games.
And both teams had similar recipes for success: great goaltending and timely offense. The Kings Jonathan Quick and the Blues Brian Elliott could both wind up being Vezna Trophy finalists. Only one of them will advance to the conference finals.
One of the best young goaltenders in hockey, Quick was fifth in the NHL with 35 wins in the regular season and his 1.95 goals against average was second only to Elliott, who led the league with a 1.56 GAA.
Elliott also led the NHL with a .940 save percentage, while Quick was fifth with a .929 save percentage. With the way the pair of goalies have played this season, goals figure to be at a premium when the series gets underway later this week.
The teams played four times during the regular season, with the Kings winning three of the four matchups. Heres a quick look at each of those games:
Oct. 18, 2011, in Los Angeles - Kings 5, Blues 0
The Kings steamrolled the Blues in their home opener in Los Angeles, scoring four goals off Jaroslav Halak before he was pulled early in the third period. The Kings added a fifth goal off Brian Elliott and Kings goalie Jonathan Quick stopped all 27 shots for the shutout.
Nov. 22, 2011, in St. Louis - Kings 3, Blues 2
Kings defenseman Willie Mitchell scored with 5:49 left in the game to break a 2-2 tie and give Los Angeles their second win against the Blues in as many games. The Blues took an early lead on a goal from Alex Steen barely a minute into the game but the Kings responded with two goals to take a 2-1 lead. Vladimir Sobotka tied the game for the Blues with 7:32 left in the third but the Sharks retook the lead less than two minutes later. Jaroslav Halak stopped 25 of 28 shots for the Blues, who lost in regulation for just the second time in 10 home games to start the year.
Feb. 3, 2012, in St. Louis - Blues 1, Kings 0
The Blues returned from the All-Star break and shut out the Kings 1-0 thanks to 22 saves from goalie Jaroslav Halak, who got revenge for his poor game earlier in the year. Veteran Jamie Langenbrunner scored the only goal for the Blues in the second period. Jonathan Quick took the loss for Los Angeles despite stopping 32 of 33 shots.
March 22, 2012, in Los Angeles - Kings 1, Blues 0 in a shootout
In a preview of whats likely to come, goalies Brian Elliott and Jonathan Quick put on an unbelievable show, combining to stop all 72 shots in regulation and overtime. Making his first and only start against the Kings in the regular season, Elliott made 37 saves while Quick, who played all four regular season matchups, made 35 saves. Jeff Carter finally beat Elliott in the fourth round of the shootout to give Los Angeles their third win in four games against the Blues this season.
BEST OF MAXIM
ST. LOUIS - St. Louis Blues goaltender Jaroslav Halak will not play in the first two games of the upcoming second-round playoff series against the Los Angeles Kings.
Blues coach Ken Hitchcock disclosed his decision Monday.
Halak was injured in the second game of the Blues' first-round series against San Jose, leaving with an undisclosed lower-body injury that is believed to...
St. Louis Blues goaltender Jaroslav Halak will not play in the first two games of the upcoming second-round playoff series against the Los Angeles Kings.
Blues coach Ken Hitchcock disclosed his decision Monday.
Halak was injured in the second game of the Blues' first-round series against San Jose, leaving with an undisclosed lower-body injury that is believed to be a sprained...
ST. LOUIS Before Brian Elliott closed his Western Conference quarterfinals series against the San Jose Sharks with a combined 50 saves in the last two games before he established himself once again as a trusted option for the St. Louis Blues alongside Jaroslav Halak one of the NHL's most surprising goalies was frustrated.
On April 16, Elliott spoke with Blues winger Jamie...
ST. LOUIS It was a celebration ten years in the making, but took just 45 seconds to begin.
Trailing 1-0 in the third period and looking more and more like they might be headed back to San Jose for a Game 6 Monday night, the St. Louis Blues showed why times are changing under the shadows of the Arch.
The Blues erased the deficit with two goals in a span of just 45 seconds, adding...
Ken Hitchcock walked to the podium calm and confident.
True, this was the St. Louis Blues' first playoff series win in a decade. For the man who presided over their rise to prominence, it's only natural that he's still coaching.
The Blues are in the playoffs for just the second time in seven seasons. They lived up to the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference by finishing...
ST. LOUIS Their resilience returned. The trait has defined the St. Louis Blues' surprising season more than any other. It's why they earned their first Central Division title since the 1999-2000 season, it's why they whipped the San Jose Sharks in two games at HP Pavilion earlier in the week, and it's why they clinched the franchise's first playoffs-series victory...
from Mark Spector of Sportsnet, “Nobody envisioned this.”
Despite which club you thought might win this series, or whether you reckoned these Vancouver Canucks were made of stern enough stuff in Year 2 of their Presidents’ Trophy reign, head coach Alain Vigneault’s words summed up well what happened to the Western Conference champions in Round 1 this spring.
Lose to the...
In any sport, it is very rare for an eight seed to take down the team with the best record in the league. Usually the regular season shows that there are three to five teams with a realistic chance to win the championship, with the other teams just there so the elite teams can beat up on them and advance to the conference finals in due time. Usually the eighth seed makes the playoffs...
Jarret Stoll scored at 4:27 of overtime as the visiting Los Angeles Kings eliminated the top-seeded Vancouver Canucks from their Western Conference quarterfinal series with a 2-1 victory in Game 5. Brad Richardson tied the contest early in the third period and Jonathan Quick made 26 saves for the Kings, who won three road games in a playoff series for the first time in franchise...
Jarret Stoll with the OT winner, Kings win 2-1 and win the series 4-1.
Western Conference Semi-Finals picture…
St. Lous Blues/Los Angeles Kings
Phoenix Coyotes or Chicago Blackhawks/Nashville Predators (Nashville will have home ice if they face Chicago)
added 11:06pm, Added Stoll OT goal…
A team that so often wore their opponents down with smothering defensive play continued the franchise's tradition for dramatic endings.
With the amount of poise they've showed during their five consecutive playoff road wins, their current advancement is practically being sold by The Most Interesting Man In The World, pardon any advertisements.
"We don't always...
I'm pretty sure most Eastern Conference teams would love to have a Jonathan Quick of their very own... or a Mike Smith, or a Pekka Rinne, or a Brian Elliott. Heck, a nice Cory Schneider would help any of the Eastern Conference teams out in a pinch. Quite frankly, the goaltending coming out of the Eastern Conference quarter-finals so far has been underwhelming at best. The most...
Excellent news for all three nominees for the Vezina Trophy. This is Rinne’s second straight nomination for the Vezina after finishing behind Tim Thomas last year.
The following is the press release obtained via the Predators public relations via the National Hockey League:
“LUNDQVIST, QUICK AND RINNE NAMED VEZINA TROPHY FINALISTS
NEW YORK (April 25, 2012) — Henrik Lundqvist...