Devils Defend Home Ice, Send Series Back to Los Angeles
Zach Parise opened the scoring 12:45 into the first period on an unassisted power play goal. Justin Williams answered back for the Kings 3:30 into the second, with an assist from Matt Greene. 6 minutes later, Bryce Salvador scored on assists from Alexei Ponikarovsky and Travis Zajac. At about the 9 minute mark in the third period, a scrum broke out near the Devils' net. Marek Zidlicky hit Mike Richards from behind after the whistle, and both teams piled on attempting to protect each other. Neither team was given a penalty for the incident, and play continued shortly thereafter. Another scrum broke out a few mintues later, this time in front of the Kings' net, when Adam Henrique dove into Jonathan Quick and several players dropped the gloves in self defense. Penalties were handed to Dustin Penner and Ponikarovsky, and they played 4 on 4 for the rest of the game. 30 seconds later, Quick was pulled for an extra man, giving the Kings a 1 man advantage. This was to no avail though, as the Devils held the Kings off for a victory in game 5 on home ice.
The Devils, once again, looked spectacular. Marty Brodeur, once again, stood on his head, posting a .962 save percentage, saving 25 of 26 shots. The team in front of him played very well, developing strong chances and performing well defensively. Marek Zidlicky stopped a breakaway in the third period with some strong defense, and that potentially changed the course of the game. The Devils have really come back in this series, and if they play this way in game 6, there's no reason they can't compete in that game either.
Jonathan Quick has fallen off a bit, posting a .895 save percentage. That being said, he hasn't been bad either. The team in front of him has to improve. It seems to me that they're playing a bit laid back, and they can't do this if they want to win the series. Unfortunately for them, the Devils have gained a ton of momentum and it appears as if they can't be stopped at this point. But, on the flip side, I was sitting here not even a week ago claiming that the Kings were a freight train that couldn't be stopped.
Either way, game 6 will take place on Monday at 8 PM Eastern Time in Los Angeles. Do you think the Kings have lost control of the series or will they come back and finish it off on Monday? Let me know in the comments below.