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2010-11 Los Angeles Kings Year-In-Review: Evaluating The Forwards

2010-11 YEAR IN REVIEW: Part 1 of a series.


Anze Kopitar (right) and Justin Williams (left) led the way among Los Angeles Kings’ forwards this season.
Photo: David Sheehan

LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Kings suffered an earlier than desired exit from the 2010-11 season, when they were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs by the San Jose Sharks, who won the series 4-2.

To be sure, another first round exit from the post-season party was not what the Kings had in mind this year, as expectations, both their own and just about everyone else’s, was for them to at least advance to the second round.

Although they faced extenuating circumstances that affected their ability to enjoy post-season success, namely, the loss of leading scorer and top defensive forward Anze Kopitar to a devastating ankle injury in late March, the Kings showed that if they had the discipline to adhere to their system and structure, they could have won that series, advancing to the Western Conference Semi Finals. Given that, it doesn’t matter how you slice it. The fact remains that the Kings did not meet expectations for the 2010-11 season. Read more of this post

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Los Angeles Kings Let It All Skate Away Against San Jose

LOS ANGELES — Four days after the Los Angeles Kings were eliminated in six games from the first round of 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs by the San Jose Sharks, the Kings dressing room at Staples Center has probably been cleaned out, not to be used (at least, not by the Kings), until next season.

Despite losing in six games, the Kings came close to, not just extending the series to a seventh game, but to advancing to the second round. Indeed, when they were on top of their game, their forecheck, defensive zone coverage and goaltending gave the Sharks fits.

“We had opportunities to win this series,” Kings right wing and team captain Dustin Brown lamented. “We had a 4-0 lead at home in Game 3, and two other overtime games. We were right there.” Read more of this post

Los Angeles Kings Getting Offense From Surprising Source

EL SEGUNDO, CA — Going into the Los Angeles Kings’ first round playoff series against the San Jose Sharks, if someone predicted that their third line of Kyle Clifford, Brad Richardson and Wayne Simmonds would account for six goals and seven assists for 13 points after five games, they would be quickly dismissed as being insane.

Kyle Clifford (left), Brad Richardson (right), and Wayne Simmonds
(center, facing away) are the unexpected leaders of the Los Angeles Kings’
offensive attack in their first round playoff series against the San Jose Sharks.
Photo: David Sheehan

Further, if anyone predicted that Clifford, a wet-behind-the-ears, twenty-year-old rookie who is known for more for throwing his weight around, would lead the team in playoff scoring with three goals and two assists for five points, they would probably be laughed at.

But those nutty predictions have proven to be prescient, as Clifford, Richardson and Simmonds have been the Kings’ top line, not their third line that is only expected to be an energy line, a checking line. Indeed, they have led the way offensively for the heavily defensive-oriented Kings, who trail the Sharks in the series, 3-2, with Game 6 scheduled for tonight at Staples Center in Los Angeles. Read more of this post

Los Angeles Kings Will Need A Miracle To Win First Round Series Against San Jose

Los Angeles Kings right wing Justin Williams (right) will return to the lineup for Game 1 of his team’s first round playoff series against the San Jose Sharks on April 14, 2011 at HP Pavilion in San Jose, California.
Photo: David Sheehan

EL SEGUNDO, CA — With less than 16 hours left, at the time of this writing, before the Los Angeles Kings open their first round playoff series against the San Jose Sharks at HP Pavilion in San Jose (7:00 PM PDT, televised in Southern California on Fox Sports West, nationally on Versus, and in Canada on TSN and RDS), one thing is clear…

…without star center Anze Kopitar, it will take a miracle for the Kings to win this series and advance to the second round. Read more of this post

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