LA Kings
Photo credit: Lakingsinsider.com

La Kings make gutsy lineup move in Game 4 against Oilers

Published April 28, 2024 at 5:08 PM

In a strategic move ahead of Game 4 against the Edmonton Oilers, LA Kings head coach Jim Hiller has decided to shift gears in the goaltending department, promoting backup goalie David Rittich to the starting position. This adjustment, revealed by Elliotte Friedman, a prominent voice on the 32 Thoughts podcast and a Sportsnet insider, reflects a significant change in the Kings' lineup as they seek to rebound in the series. The announcement was made via Friedman's Twitter:

The decision comes in the wake of starting goaltender Cam Talbot's struggles against the Oilers' offensive onslaught. Over the first three games, Talbot has surrendered 17 goals—a daunting statistic that contributed to his dismal goals against average of 5.30 and a save percentage of only .861. With just one win under his belt this series, these figures starkly contrast the level of performance needed to secure a playoff victory, as noted in an update from Oilers Access:

On the opposite bench, the Oilers are maintaining their lineup for the upcoming game. Head coach Kris Knoblauch continues to place his confidence in goaltender Stuart Skinner, who has been pivotal in the series. Edmonton also remains hopeful that winger Evander Kane, alongside stars Leon Draisaitl and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, will escalate his impact in the series, providing the offensive power the team needs to sustain their advantage.

Rittich, although relatively inexperienced in playoff contexts with only two appearances and less-than-stellar statistics, represents a gamble for the Kings. This change aims to inject new energy into the team and perhaps destabilize the Oilers' current momentum. However, starting a backup goalie can raise eyebrows among fans, particularly when stakes are as high as in the playoff series.

The crucial Game 4 is slated for today, April 28th, with a start time of 10:30 PM Eastern. It will be a pivotal moment for the Kings to demonstrate whether this bold move can alter the course of their playoff journey.
April 28   |   321 answers
La Kings make gutsy lineup move in Game 4 against Oilers

Do you think David Rittich will help the LA Kings?

Yes8325.9 %
No23874.1 %
Latest 10 stories