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LA Kings-Anaheim Ducks: Second Round Playoff Series Preview

AUDIO INTERVIEWS: Includes audio of May 2 post-practice interviews with Los Angeles Kings center Anze Kopitar, forward Dustin Brown, defenseman Jake Muzzin, and head coach Darryl Sutter.


Los Angeles Kings defenseman Jake Muzzin (right) shined during the first round playoff series
against the San Jose Sharks, much to the surprise of many fans.

 

EL SEGUNDO, CA — With all the talk over the past couple of days about a true rivalry that will be established between the Los Angeles Kings and Anaheim Ducks, now that the two teams are finally meeting in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the anticipation going into the series is palpable.

But beyond the hype, the game is played on the ice, and one team must win four games to advance to the conference finals.

For the Kings to accomplish that goal, they must clamp down defensively on the team that led the National Hockey League offensively during the regular season, averaging 3.21 goals per game, compared to the Kings’ 2.42 goals per game (ranked 26th in the league).

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Are The LA Kings On The Right Track For 20-Game Sprint To The Finish?

AUDIO: Includes audio interviews with Drew Doughty, Alec Martinez, Willie Mitchell, Jake Muzzin, Jarret Stoll and Justin Williams.


LA Kings right wing Justin Williams: “This time of year is when we play our best hockey. These last twenty games is playoff time.
It’s time to show up.”
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES AND EL SEGUNDO, CA — Even though the Los Angeles Kings have won all three of their games since the National Hockey League returned to the ice following the Olympic break—they have won four straight games overall—they know their game is not yet where it needs to be. Nevertheless, there is little doubt that they have picked up their game since the break ended.

“We wanted to have a good start coming out of the break,” said defenseman Alec Martinez. “It’s no secret that we weren’t happy with our game before the break started.”

“We’re scoring goals, and we’ve been playing our game, the last three games,” added Martinez. “That’s certainly a good sign, but we’ve got twenty more to go. We’ve got to keep it going.”

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Martin Jones Isn’t The Only One Raising Eyebrows For LA Kings

LA Kings defenseman Jake Muzzin, shown here during a recent practice.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

EL SEGUNDO, CA — Although Los Angeles Kings rookie goaltender Martin Jones’ dazzling feats in goal have dominated the headlines in recent days, another player is garnering significant attention as well.

In fact, following the Kings’ practice on December 20, a few members of the local media talked about this particular player, extolling his virtues.

Prior to the Kings’ 3-2 shootout victory over the Colorado Avalanche on December 21, scouts for other National Hockey League teams—all regulars at Staples Center—could be heard in the press elevator, raving about that same player.

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LA Kings Linden Vey On His NHL Debut: “I’ve Never Had So Many Text Messages”

Los Angeles Kings forward prospect Linden Vey, shown here
during the Kings’ 2013 Training Camp.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/FrozenRoyalty.net

LOS ANGELES AND EL SEGUNDO, CA — Over the years, most hockey fans have probably read or heard their share of stories about a young player making his National Hockey League debut, probably enough to think that it’s not a big deal.

Indeed, in the grand scheme of things, a player making his NHL debut pales in comparison to many of the stories we see, read and hear in the news. But make no mistake…it still is a big deal, no question about it.

To be sure, when you consider the fact that a minuscule number of young players from all over the world ever get close to making it to the NHL, it is a blessed event when one does, a cause for celebration, something that young Los Angeles Kings forward Linden Vey was doing, albeit in rather subdued fashion, after making his NHL debut in a 2-0 win over the Buffalo Sabres on November 7 at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

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