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Rough, Physical Play Showing That LA Kings Are A Team, Perhaps Now More Than Ever Before

LA Kings defenseman Willie Mitchell drops the gloves with Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steve Downie on
November 4, 2010 at Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Photo: Newscom

LOS ANGELES AND EL SEGUNDO, CA — To this point in the 2010-11 season, if anything is clear about the Los Angeles Kings, it is that other teams view them as one of the best teams in the NHL, and that is showing up in terms of physical play, as many opponents are going into games against the Kings trying to get them off their game through physical intimidation.

To be sure, despite the fact that right wing Kevin Westgarth, the Kings’ heavyweight enforcer, has not been in a fight yet this season, perhaps due to the fact that he broke Colorado Avalanche heavyweight David Koci’s jaw in a pre-season scuffle back in September, teams seem to be going into games against the Kings with the intent of knocking them around, both with big hits and their fists.

“There were a few hits, a few confrontations,” head coach Terry Murray said after his team’s very physical 1-0 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning on November 4. “A little old time hockey with the scrums that were going on. It was a very competitive game out there—two first place teams. The battle heats up.” Read more of this post

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LA Kings Looking For Kevin Westgarth To Be An Upgrade As Enforcer

EL SEGUNDO, CA — The Los Angeles Kings rid themselves of the sloth-like skating and one-bad-penalty-after-another performances by left wing enforcer Raitis Ivanans when they passed on signing him to a new contract this past summer.

That left the enforcer spot open, and it is all but a foregone conclusion that 6-4, 228-pound right wing Kevin Westgarth will be promoted from the Manchester Monarchs of the American Hockey League, the Kings’ primary minor league affiliate. Read more of this post

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