Saturday, February 21, 2009

Kings Game Preview 2/21/09

Time: 1 p.m.
On the air: TV: FS West. Radio: 1150.
Where: Staples Center.
Records: Kings 25-23-9 (13-12-8); Coyotes 26-28-5 (9-16-3).
Record vs. Coyotes: 1-2.
Kings stat of the game: Johnathan Quick 5-1-1 in the month of February

The Kings need to start winning at home. They are on a current 3-game skid, and beating teams that are also in the running for that 8th and final playoff spot is crucial. The Coyotes coming to town usually is a bad thing for the Kings, as the Coyotes have won 4 of the last 5 meetings at the Staples Center and 8 out of the last 11 meetings overall. The Coyotes have been on a slide since the All-Star break only winning 2 of their last 11.

Jonathan Quick will be back in goal tonight after Ersberg started and looked shaky in San Jose. That should be a welcome return as Quick has arguably been the best goalie in the NHL in February. I'm guessing Ilya Bryzgalov, who is 6-1-0 against the Kings, will be in goal for the Coyotes.

Game is about to start, lets go Kings!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Ducks and Sharks are only awesome as animals, not hockey teams

Yeah okay Sharks are just large fish and Ducks are pretty lazy but if I was reincarnated as an animal I wouldn't mind the life of either.

That being said I have an extreme dislike of both hockey teams. Last night I was on sports overload watching the Lakers and Kings at the same time while doing a 4 page paper that I was completing at the last second so my blog got the short end of the stick. It was an exciting game, and I was glad to see the re-emergence of the CBS line as well as another great game by Kopitar.

I thought before these 2 games that these two games would dictate the actual probability of whether the Kings could make a legitimate playoff run or would become sellers at the trade deadline and obtain another top-10 pick. I don't know if I stand by that now, as the Sharks will be pretty tough to beat after the physicality of last night's game. The Kings will still be on the outside looking in regardless of the result tonight, but a strong performance from the Kings tonight would do a lot for their confidence, especially if the Kings were to meet up with the Sharks if they did, in fact, make the playoffs.

Game Preview to follow, I'll try to put my love of Sharks aside and be as harsh, hateful and homerish as possible.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Kings Game Preview 2-16-09

Time: 7:30 PST.
On the air: TV: Fox Sports West; Radio: 1150.
Where: Staples Center.
Records: Kings 24-22-8, Thrashers 20-32-5.
Record vs. Thrashers: Last played in 2006-07
Kings stat of the game: The Kings are 22nd in the NHL in Goals Allowed at Home (80) while the Thrashers are 4th in Road Goals (91)

What is a Thrasher? I've actually never known and have never bothered to find out. Does that make me a bad NHL fan? I googled Thrasher and got this picture:

What is that?!

I mentioned shedding the "Forgotten Franchise" part of the blog's motto in the last post, and if I were to abandon it, I'd hope some Atlanta Thrasher blog out there would pick it up (before the team gets moved to Winnipeg or Kansas City or some other irrelevant city). Nevertheless, the Thrashers can score a lot of goals and the Kings can't, so before I start running my mouth I should finish the preview.

The Kings are having trouble at home. They were scoring at will on the road and have been unable to convert in the last two games against the Flames and Oilers. The Thrashers are one of the worst defensive teams in the league, so this would be a good time to turn around this 3-game homestand.

Kings Update 2-16-09; The Roller Coaster Continues

The Kings inability to get a solid offensive output at home is baffling. The team just went on a road trip where they only lost 1 game (which was questionable) at Montreal, and then can't put the puck in the net vs. Calgary and only get 2 vs. Edmonton. The most peculiar thing is the number of 2 man advantages the Kings have had without taking advantage. They had 2 against the Calgary, both which didn't create a goal, and 2 against Edmonton (counting the pulled goalie at the end which sent the game to overtime). For a team fighting for their playoff lives against one of the toughest remaining schedules in the NHL, 2-man advantages have to yield goals. The positive from these two games is that the shots and time in the offensive zone was dominated by the Kings.

The Goalie situation is somewhat confusing too. I love the idea of Quick being the everyday goalie, he is a good player and I think it is one of the main reasons for the Kings play recently. If Quick is going to be the goalie though, something should be done with Bernier and/or Ersberg. I'm near positive Bernier will stick with the team, but I have a hard time believing that the Kings are just holding his spot with Quick, as Quick has been as good as any goalie in the NHL, winning the NHL 1st star of the week last week. I see Ersberg maybe getting dealt to a contender in need of a backup goalie for a low-round pick, similar to LaBarbera, but the goalie situation will be an interesting story to follow.

Kings get the Thrashers tonight, and you can actually pick the Kings tonight on ESPN's beat the streak game, taking the over/under at a combined 5.5 goals for the game. ESPN is finally noticing there is an NHL team that plays in the Staples Center, maybe I need to update the motto of the Blog.

Game Preview to come later! Go Kings!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Kings Game Preview 2/10/09

Time: 4 PST.
On the air: TV: FS West. Radio: 1150
Where: Nassau Coliseum.
Records: Kings 23-21-7, Islanders 16-31-5.
Record vs. Islanders (2007-08): 1-0-0.

Kings stat of the game: Kings giving up on 2.69 Goals per game, good for 7th best in the League. The Islanders, without their 20 year contracted goalie Rick DiPietro this season are at 3.31, putting them at 3rd worst in the league.

Kings have been on a roll lately, and as I had predicted in my midseason review, choosing Johnathan Quick as the everyday goalie has brought stability and led to wins. With the goalie situation settled and the defense playing better, players that had contributed next to nothing in the first half of the season such as Calder and O'Sullivan have been playing extremely well. The now renamed "CBS" line of Calder Brown and Stoll has been one of the hottest lines in the league. Every facet of the game for the Kings has been playing significantly better than it was a month ago, which can attest to Terry Murray's coaching abilities. Stability in Goal, stability on the bench, finally things are looking up for this team.

Not all is peachy keen in the world of the Kings though. They will now be going through the roughest part of the 08-09 schedule. The Kings led the league in home games in the first half of the season, and subsequently will be on the road often throughout the next couple of months. One particularly difficult part of the schedule will come at the end of February, as they will play the Wild, Flyers and Red Wings and then go to Chicago on March 1st. This makes the game tonight even more important because the Islanders pose the least amount of threat to beat the Kings as anyone in the next month.

Prediction: Kings 4 Islanders 2
2 by Brown, 1 by Frolov, 1 by O'Sullivan

Kings pushing for a playoff spot

Important game tonight against the Islanders, as the Kings are slowly creeping back into playoff contention after an awful losing streak in early January. Kings are playing their best hockey of the year and could do a lot for their playoff chances by beating the lowly Islanders. Game Preview and previous game reviews (which I've missed because of a lack of computer) to follow! Happy Kings gameday.

Believe it or not, ESPN mentioned the Kings on their website. I don't remember the last time I've seen a mention of the Kings in an article on the website. In speaking of bubble teams for the playoffs, Scott Burnside writes...

For our money, seeing the youthful Los Angeles Kings sneak in would probably be the biggest boon for the league. Having Los Angeles back in the playoff picture after a five-season absence would do wonders for the West Coast market (especially if Anaheim continues to flounder its way out of the playoffs). And it just might happen given the inability of any of the teams in the bottom half of the bracket to separate themselves from the pack.

The Kings have won three straight and six of seven, including wins over playoff-bound New Jersey, Washington and Chicago, and begin the week just three points out of eighth place.

I guess I can't disagree with that.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Some extra game notes

Brian Elliott, my favorite Wisconsin Badger to ever wear the uniform is starting in goal tonight for the sens. Another former Badger standout, Dany Heatley, skates for the Sens. Lots of story lines in this game, I'll be pulling for the Kings of course, but I wouldn't mind seeing Elliott play well, goals should be at a premium this game.

Jonathan Quick starting again in goal. He's been solid lately and is finally providing some stability in goal for the Kings. He should have a very good night against the low-scoring Sens.

Thank you gamecenter, I can do something that most in LA can't, watch the Kings when they are in Canada.

I'm surprised Drewiske wasn't a scratch for tonight, hes logged almost a minute in the opening 5 minutes of the first period. I'd be stoked if he got on the scoring sheet tonight.

Go Kings Go!

Kings Game Preview 2/3/09

Still don't have my computer, my new mac should be in tommorow! Bye bye PC and windows vista, I bearly knew ya...

onto the game,

Time: 4:30 PST.
On the air: Radio: 1150
Where: Scotiabank Place.
Records: Kings 20-21-7 (7-10-1 road), Senators 17-24-7 (11-8-4 home).
Record vs. Senators (2007-08): 1-0-0.
Kings stat of the game: Kings have actually scored more goals (123) than the Seantors (115) this season.

After virtually every electronic product I own crapped out on me, the Kings decided to go ahead and blow a game in the late 3rd period against the Canadiens on Saturday. The Brown Calder Stoll line continued playing well (despite the referees best wishes) which is one postive to take out of that game. The "CBS" line has combined for 23 points in the last 5 games. If the Kings want any chance of making the playoffs, they can't afford to blow games in the 3rd period.

In Kings news, Denis Gauthier was suspended for 5 games, which is both good because he won't be playing, and because former and fellow Badger Davis Drewiske has been called up to the big club. The captain of the college hockey juggernaut that is so close to my heart played center and winger in his college days but has been transfered to the blue line in the pros. He's definitely a scrapper, and a very solid special teams player. I'm not sure how much time (if any) he'll get while Gauthier is out, but I'd really like to see him play. He was an extremely popular player in Madison and I think his effort what be a breath of fresh air for a team who just blew a game in the late 3rd period.

Prediction: Kings 4 Senators 1
2 goals by Brown, 1 by Frolov, 1 by Harrold