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Win Over San Jose Brought Out Best From LA Kings

Los Angeles Kings right wing Jeff Carter will be out of action for awhile due to what is believed
to be a foot or ankle injury.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES AND EL SEGUNDO, CA — As reported in this space on October 24, the Los Angeles Kings’ game is built around establishing a strong, relentless, smothering forecheck.

The only problem is that through 14 games this season, their forecheck has not always been there.

“The biggest part of our game is the forecheck, and it hasn’t been there every night,” winger and captain Dustin Brown told Frozen Royalty on October 23. “It’s been really inconsistent. When we’re really good, and hard to play against, it’s because our forecheck is really good.”

One week after Brown made that remark, his team put in their best effort of the season, despite glaring blunders on two goals against, to beat the National Hockey League’s best team to date, the San Jose Sharks, 4-3, in overtime, at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

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LA Kings Dwight King Becoming A 15-Goal Scorer May Not Be Far-Fetched At All

Los Angeles Kings left wing Dwight King, shown here at a recent practice.
(click to view a larger image).
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

EL SEGUNDO AND LOS ANGELES, CA — It doesn’t take more than a quick spin through the various forums and web sites where the Los Angeles Kings faithful congregate to talk about their favorite team to learn that left wing Dwight King has become this season’s Dustin Penner.

Indeed, Penner, who now plays for the Anaheim Ducks after more than two seasons with the Kings, helping them win the Stanley Cup in 2012, was the target of the fans’ ire for just about his entire time with the Kings. But even though the anger level is not what it often was with Penner, King frequently elicits similar reactions, drawing heavy criticism for his play.

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LA Kings: Bad Habits and Bright Spots Highlighted In Win Over Phoenix

ALSO: Post-game audio interviews with Drew Doughty, Dwight King, Anze Kopitar and head coach Darryl Sutter following the Los Angeles Kings’ 7-4 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes on October 24.


Los Angeles Kings left wing Dwight King, shown here during the team’s
October 24 morning skate, recorded the first hat trick of his NHL career
later that night, in a 7-4 win over the Phoenix Coyotes.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES — Anyone who has followed the Los Angeles Kings for at least a couple of seasons knows that they have a penchant for letting teams back into games after establishing a big lead.

The most notorious example in recent years was their loss in Game 3 of the 2011 Western Conference Quarterfinals, when they had a 4-0 lead, and then led 5-1, before losing in overtime, 6-5, an absolutely embarrassing defeat.

Earlier this season, the Kings had a 3-0 lead after the first period against the Ottawa Senators on October 9, at Staples Center, but then allowed three straight goals, one in the second period, and two in the third. Fortunately for the Kings, Jeff Carter saved the day with a goal in overtime to secure a 4-3 victory.

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LA Kings: Inconsistent Play Stopping Forecheck Before It Can Get Started

ALSO: Update on Dustin Brown adjusting to having to wear a knee brace; Defenseman Alec Martinez could become left wing Alec Martinez; Anze Kopitar makes a young man’s wish come true, and; in an audio interview, Willie Mitchell discusses hitting and fighting in the National Hockey League.


Los Angeles Kings center Anze Kopitar (left), with 18-year-old Tyler Fithian, a leukemia patient whose wish to skate with Kopitar was granted by the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Greater Los Angeles, on October 23.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Gann Matsuda/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES AND EL SEGUNDO, CA — Entering tonight’s game against the Phoenix Coyotes at Staples Center in Los Angeles (7:30 PM PDT; televised locally on Fox Sports West), the Los Angeles Kings are a disappointing 6-4-0 to start the season, good for twelve points. That ranks them a lowly fifth in the seven-team Pacific Division, and seventh in the Western Conference.

Although it is way too early in the season to be overly concerned, to this point in the season, inconsistent play has been a rather glaring issue for the Kings, and it has shown up mostly in their inability to generate a forecheck with any semblance of regularity, as was evident in a 3-2 loss to the Calgary Flames at Staples Center on October 21.

Indeed, even though the Kings took too many penalties and gave up three power play goals, their problems extended beyond their poor penalty-killing that night.

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