LA Kings Defenseman Willie Mitchell Warns Against Overconfidence

Los Angeles Kings veteran defenseman Willie Mitchell knows his
former team, the Vancouver Canucks, all too well.
Photo: David Sheehan

EL SEGUNDO, CA — Despite their underdog status going into their first round playoff series against the Vancouver Canucks, the Los Angeles Kings, lead the series, 1-0, after winning Game 1 on April 11, 4-2, in Vancouver.

The Kings went into the series saying all the right things about not being concerned about being the underdog, and expressing confidence that they could get the job done against the heavily favored Canucks.

Of course, the Kings were heavy underdogs two seasons ago, when they faced the Canucks in the first round, and it was the same thing against the San Jose Sharks in the first round last season. Read more of this post

Los Angeles Kings’ 2011 Late-Round Draft Picks Working To Beat Long Odds

EL SEGUNDO, CA — The National Hockey League Entry Draft is one huge crapshoot in terms of teams landing prospects who will make it to the NHL level to stay, let alone big stars, even for those who are lucky enough to be first round picks.

Left wing prospect Joel Lowry spoke to the media
during the Los Angeles Kings 2011 Development Camp
at the Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo, California,
July 11-12, 2011.
Photo: Gann Matsuda

For those who end up being selected in later rounds, the odds of making it to the NHL are much, much longer. Nevertheless, every so often, they not only make it to the NHL, but they thrive there.

The most notable cases in point among Kings draft picks (not including active NHL players) would be:

  • Butch Goring, Center (fifth round, 51st overall, 1969)
  • Billy Smith, Goaltender (fifth round, 59th overall, 1970)
  • Dave Taylor, Right Wing (15th round, 210th overall, 1975)
  • Mark Hardy, Defenseman (second round, 30th overall, 1979)
  • Bernie Nicholls, Center (fourth round, 73rd overall, 1980)
  • Kevin Stevens, Left Wing (sixth round, 108th overall, 1983)
  • Luc Robitaille, Left Wing (ninth round, 171st overall, 1984)
  • Rob Blake, Defenseman (fourth round, 70th overall, 1987)
  • Alexei Zhitnik, Defenseman (fourth round, 81st overall, 1991) Read more of this post

LA Kings Drew Doughty Honored At NHL Awards…Just Not With The Norris Trophy

LAS VEGAS AND EL SEGUNDO, CA — At the 2010 National Hockey League Awards, held at the Palms in Las Vegas, Los Angeles Kings defenseman Drew Doughty finished third in the voting for the James Norris Memorial Trophy, awarded annually to the league’s best defenseman during the regular season. Read more of this post

Frozen Royalty Audio: LA Kings Beat Themselves In Third Period In Game 4 Against Canucks

LOS ANGELES — Things were looking awfully good for the Los Angeles Kings, who took a 3-2 lead into the third period of Game 4 of their Western Conference Quarterfinal playoff game against the Vancouver Canucks on April 21 at Staples Center.

But the third period proved disastrous for the Kings, who wound up dropping a 6-4 decision and, instead of taking a commanding 3-1 lead in their best-of-seven series, they now head to Vancouver for Game 5 on April 23 with the series tied, 2-2.

Whether they were overconfident and let up to start the third period, or maybe they were playing not to lose instead of continuing to attack and take the game to the Canucks. But whatever the reason was, the Kings stopped playing their system in the third period and that opened the floodgates for the Canucks, who took full advantage. Read more of this post

LA Kings: Drew Doughty, Jack Johnson Prove To Be Vancouver Canucks’ Biggest Problems

LOS ANGELES AND EL SEGUNDO, CA — With Game 4 of their Western Conference Quarterfinal playoff series against the Vancouver Canucks coming up tonight (April 21, 7:00 PM PDT at Staples Center), much of the focus has been on the Canucks’ inept penalty-killing, which has allowed seven power play goals on just twelve chances after three games.

The result: the Canucks are looking up at a 2-1 series deficit with a huge challenge ahead of them…fixing their penalty-killing woes.

But the problem for the Canucks is not just their penalty-killing. More to the point, their problem is two-fold and they go by the names Drew Doughty and Jack Johnson, the young studs on the Kings’ blue line.

Indeed, the twenty-year-old Doughty and the 23-year-old Johnson are still very young, relatively inexperienced defensemen. But in the three games played in this series they have totally outclassed the Vancouver blue line corps, contributed huge minutes in situations where they were called upon to shut down the Canucks’ top forwards, and they have been unstoppable on the power play. Read more of this post


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