Programming note: Watch tonight’s Kings-Sharks Game 4 streaming LIVE online at NBCSports.com -- after the game, switch over to Sharks Postgame Live on Comcast SportsNet California
SAN JOSE – Kings defenseman Drew Doughty doesn’t feel his team has played a complete game yet in its series against the Sharks, as the two rival clubs prepare for the pivotal Game 4 at HP Pavilion on Tuesday night.
“We know how hard it is to beat this San Jose team, especially at home in their rink,” Doughty said. “It’s going to be a tough one tonight. In here, we’re really prepared to play our first full 60-minute game and get a win. We know our best 60 against their best 60, we should have the win.”
The Sharks know the importance of getting the series back to L.A. tied at 2-2. San Jose, which has struggled for much of the season away from home, probably has to win Game 4 if it wants a legitimate shot at dethroning the reigning champions.
In franchise history, San Jose has lost all five series it’s trailed 3-1, but is a slightly better 4-8 when a series is tied at two games apiece.
“We know we don’t want to go down 3-1 going back to L.A. We know this is a huge game,” Logan Couture said. “We have to bring our best effort. They’re going to be better than they were in Game 3. We know that. We have to be better than we were, as well.”
Patrick Marleau said: “We’re still behind in the series, so we still need to come out with a strong effort tonight and be ready.”
Home teams are 10-1 in the second round, including 3-0 in this series. Overall, home teams are 40-18 in the Stanley Cup playoffs.
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Jonathan Quick will return to the net for the first time since his outburst at the end of Game 3. The goaltender was presumably upset about the two late penalties to the Kings that resulted in Couture’s game-winning goal.
Quick avoided any supplemental discipline for his game misconduct due to “verbal abuse of officials,” according to the L.A. Times.
“All of us on the team were really upset by some of the calls that were made, but that’s what happens,” Doughty said. “Quickie doesn’t like to lose a game and doesn’t like to give up a goal, and that’s why he’s such a great goalie in this league, is because he cares so much.”
Darryl Sutter said: “It wasn’t even something that we had to address, to be quite honest. The frustration of the goaltender was the same as everybody else, and you move on in a hurry. It has no bearing on his performance going forward for sure, and it doesn’t have any bearing on ours. The emotional level is not an issue.”
Tommy Wingels wasn’t even aware of what happened with Quick until Tuesday morning.
“When you lose a game, you’re frustrated. We play this game to win, and you put so much effort in and when you don’t get the success you want, for whatever reasons, you become frustrated. I’m sure that was the case for him,” Wingels said.
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The Sharks weren’t pleased with the ice conditions at the start of overtime in Game 3. Joe Thornton referred to the ice as “sticky,” citing Joe Pavelski’s tumble early on in the extra session that nearly resulted in an odd-man rush going the other way.
McLellan was asked about it on Tuesday morning.
"That's probably a good question for Doug. I know he's addressed it,” McLellan said. “We want the best ice conditions available. When I say we, the National Hockey League, in all the buildings. It is California, and it was 90 some degrees yesterday. It is warm in Los Angeles as well. The people that run the building and the ice crews do whatever they can to give us the best available conditions."
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The Sharks are encouraging fans for cash donations to the American Red Cross, to assist in the Oklahoma tornado disaster relief.
Fans can make a donation at the North and South Entrances of HP Pavilion at San Jose as they enter the building, or at the Sharks Foundation Booth located between Sections 118 and 120 on the concourse. Fans attending the Street Rally prior to the game can also make a donation at the Sharks Foundation tent on Autumn Street.