This week’s underdog comes to us from the LA Kings, in the form of goaltender Ben Scrivens. Scrivens was acquired by the Kings this past offseason, when Toronto traded him, along with Matt Frattin, in exchange for Jonathan Bernier. Scrivens was immediately slotted as LA’s backup goalie, playing in the shadow of the former Conn Smythe trophy winner Jonathan Quick. Quick, however, has been out of the lineup since November 12th, and his return is scheduled for around Christmas time. Since then, Scrivens has appeared in every game, going 4-0-2, posting a 1.37 GAA (1st in the league) and a .946 SV%(second in the league), as well as posting back-to-back shutouts against the Devils and the Rangers. When Quick was injured, Darryl Sutter and the Kings were worried, but Scrivens has set their minds at ease and earned the respect of his fellow teammates at the same time.
When the Kings trade Jonathan Bernier to the Leafs, they gave up their backup goalie who was too good to be playing as a backup. When they got Scrivens back in the trade, they thought they had gotten a player who was barely a backup, if not an AHL starter. Scrivens has proven his team, as well as the rest of the league wrong, as well as making his teammates confident in his ability, as well as being the first star of the night around the entire league twice. Scrivens is 27, and is in the last year of his contract. As long as Scrivens keeps playing like this, LA will have no choice but to sign him and keep him as Hollywood’s backup for some time to come.