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While many fans were likely scared to start the series with the absences of Willie Mitchell, Matt Greene and Alec Martinez, the Kings again proved that defense is their bread and butter.
With a young group of defenders, the Kings averaged a staggering 1.67 goals against and 29.5 shots against per game through the series.
Key forwards for the Blues like Andy McDonald, David Perron and Chris Stewart were completely shut down. Stewart, who was the Blues' leading scorer during the regular season, was held to just one assist in the series.
Drew Doughty continues to evolve as one of the best all-around defensemen in the league, as he ate up nearly 30 minutes per night (28:49 TOI)—second only to Norris finalist Ryan Suter of the Minnesota Wild (31:37 TOI).
While a lot of fans were, and still are, skeptical of the play of young Jake Muzzin and Keaton Ellerby, the two did admirably considering their limited playoff experience.
St. Louis was keying on Muzzin almost every time he was on the ice, and while he finished the series with a minus-two rating, he had some heads-up plays, big hits and averaged around 15 minutes a night. It's a tough ask for a rookie defenseman to be ready for playoff-style hockey against one of the most physically punishing teams in the league, but Muzzin held his own for the most part.
Ellerby averaged 10 minutes a game and was subsequently replaced by Alec Martinez, who was incredibly solid in his appearances.
When the Kings offense wasn't clicking, the club fell back on its team defense to get the job done. It worked, particularly in a tightly contested 1-0 Game 3. Every game of the series was decided by one goal, and when a lockdown was in order, the defense came through.