National Hockey League
Preview
Los Angeles at Pittsburgh
When: 7:00 PM ET, Thursday, October 30, 2014
Where: Consol Energy Center, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


The Los Angeles Kings are in search of their first victory away from home, but they'll face a difficult task when they visit the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday night in the second contest of a five-game road trip. The Kings have played only twice on the road and have dropped a pair of 3-2 decisions in overtime, including Tuesday's loss at Philadelphia that snapped a six-game winning streak. The teams split of pair of decisions last season, with the away club prevailing both times.

The reigning Stanley Cup champions have not allowed more than two regulation goals since the season opener but will have to contend with a Pittsburgh offense that erupted for eight in a shellacking of New Jersey on Tuesday night. Superstar captain Sidney Crosby has multiple points in five of eight games after scoring a pair of goals Tuesday night. The Penguins own the NHL's best power play with a staggering 40.6 percent success rate and will test Los Angeles' sixth-ranked penalty kill.

TV: 7 p.m. ET, FSN West (Los Angeles), ROOT (Pittsburgh)

ABOUT THE KINGS (6-1-2): The suspension of defenseman Slava Voynov and an injury to center Anze Kopitar forced Los Angeles to go with 19 players in Tuesday's loss, a situation the team is trying to rectify prior to Thursday's game. Kopitar practiced along with injured teammates Marian Gaborik and Trevor Lewis on Wednesday, and coach Darryl Sutter said Kopitar and Lewis are "both close" to rejoining the lineup. "I don’t like to miss games," said Kopitar, who has four goals and seven points in eight contests versus Pittsburgh. "I’ll be back as soon as I feel ready and as soon as everybody thinks it’s a good time to get going.”

ABOUT THE PENGUINS (5-2-1): Defenseman Olli Maatta collected an assist in Tuesday's lopsided victory after learning one day earlier that he will have to undergo surgery next week to remove a tumor from his neck - a procedure that is expected to sideline him for four weeks. The offseason trade that brought forward Patric Hornqvist from Nashville in exchange for James Neal continues to pay off for Pittsburgh, particularly with the man advantage. Hornqvist is tied with Evgeni Malkin for second on the team with 11 points in eight games and has produced a goal and five assists with the Penguins on the power play.

OVERTIME

1. Malkin has registered four goals and seven assists during his eight-game point streak to open the season.

2. Kings Fs Jeff Carter, Tyler Toffoli and Tanner Pearson - "That '70s line" - have combined for 17 of the team's first 23 goals while adding 17 assists.

3. The Penguins have killed off 18 straight power plays over the past five games.

PREDICTION: Penguins 3, Kings 2
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div
Los Angeles 6-1-2-0 L1 6-1-0-0 0-0-2-0 2-0-0-0 4-1-2-0 1-1-1-0
Pittsburgh 5-2-1-0 W2 3-2-0-0 2-0-1-0 0-0-0-0 5-2-1-0 ---
Last Meeting
Los Angeles Pittsburgh
Date Away Home Shots Saves PP Shots Saves PP
3/27/14 LA 3 PIT 2 32 35 1-3 37 29 0-7
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Total Points Player  
Los Angeles D. Brown 1
Pittsburgh S. Crosby 1
Goals Player  
Los Angeles J. Carter 1
Pittsburgh C. Kunitz 1
Assists Player  
Los Angeles D. Brown 1
Pittsburgh S. Crosby 1
Saves Player  
Los Angeles M. Jones 35
Pittsburgh J. Zatkoff 29
Season
Total Points Player  
Los Angeles T. Toffoli 22
Pittsburgh S. Crosby 14
Goals Player  
Los Angeles T. Toffoli 9
Pittsburgh S. Crosby 7
Assists Player  
Los Angeles T. Toffoli 13
Pittsburgh B. Comeau 7
Saves Player  
Los Angeles J. Quick 328
Pittsburgh M. Fleury 237
Quickchart Matchup
Los Angeles Off vs  Pittsburgh Def
2.56 GF
2.75 GA
28.6 Shots
28.1 Shots
5 PP
6 PK
Pittsburgh Off vs  Los Angeles Def
4.12 GF
1.67 GA
32.1 Shots
34.7 Shots
13 PP
4 PK