It took a matchup against a bitter rival to shake the Los Angeles Kings out of a tailspin following a scorching start to the season. Fresh off a 2-1 shootout victory over Anaheim in the latest installment of the Freeway Faceoff, the Kings will open a four-game road trip against another struggling foe in the Detroit Red Wings on Tuesday night.
Los Angeles, which burst out of the gate with a 9-1-1 start this season, had dropped three in a row and seven of eight (1-6-1) before pulling out the dramatic win over the Ducks, getting a tying goal from Dustin Brown with 92 seconds left in regulation. “We got off to a good start, and I think we’ve had a big serving of humble pie, really,” Brown said. “Now we go on the road where we can hopefully get that workman mentality.” Detroit has lost four in a row — three in overtime — so it came as little surprise that the team focused 3-on-3 situations during Monday’s practice. The Red Wings have yet to make themselves at home at brand-new Little Caesars Arena, winning only four of 11 games (4-3-4).
TV: 7:30 p.m. ET, Sportsnet Ontario, Sportsnet East, FSN West (Los Angeles), FSN Detroit
ABOUT THE KINGS (13-8-3): Jonathan Quick was mired in a six-game losing streak, matching the longest slide of his career, before turning aside 25 shots and stopping the final three shootouts against Anaheim. “That was a typical Quickie game, which is probably above average for most goalies,” Brown said of Quick, who has now allowed more than three goals in his last six starts. “Quickie’s like that every night, it seems like.” Quick has struggled against the Red Wings with an 8-13-1 record and 2.92 goals-against average.
ABOUT THE RED WINGS (10-9-5): Forward David Booth, a former 30-goal scorer who was placed on waivers at the beginning of the month, scored his first two goals of the season Saturday to earn a promotion to the top line alongside captain Henrik Zetterberg and Gustav Nyquist. Rookie Martin Frk (groin), who has six goals and nine points in 18 games, will miss his seventh consecutive contest but is expected to return Saturday. Defenseman Trevor Daley practice Monday but is likely out Tuesday, coach Jeff Blashill said.
1. Los Angeles has scored two goals or fewer in eight of its last nine games.
2. Red Wings F Anthony Mantha scored his 11th goal Saturday — six shy of his rookie season from a year ago.
3. The Kings are 1-for-11 on the power play in the last five games.
PREDICTION: Kings 3, Red Wings 2