LA Kings And NY Rangers: 2014 Stanley Cup Final Preview/Prediction

The Stanley Cup
(click above to view larger image
Photo: Gann Matsuda/

LOS ANGELES — After eight months, the National Hockey League has finally reached the peak of its crescendo, with the New York Rangers here on the left coast to face-off against the Los Angeles Kings in 2014’s quest for hockey’s version of the Holy Grail, the Stanley Cup.

Players, head coaches and general managers of both teams met the media on June 3 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, where the players spent a lot of time analyzing their opponent.

“[The Kings are] a big team,” said Rangers forward Brad Richards. “Straightforward, experienced, and they obviously don’t give up. We’ve seen that over the last few years, and especially this year. You know that their will is there. We’re going to have to get to that, and match that. After that, there’s not a lot of surprises. It’s straightforward hockey, and they’re going to come. Besides that, we’ll see where it goes.”

“They’re obviously a very, very good team,” said Rangers forward Chris Kreider. “That’s why they are where they are, at this point in the season. That’s why they’ve had so much success over the past few years.”

Read more of this post

Contrary To Popular Belief, LA Kings’ Jake Muzzin Is Becoming A Solid NHL Defenseman

COMMENTARY/ANALYSIS: Los Angeles Kings defenseman Jake Muzzin has been under the microscope this season, so much so that he has become the favorite target of many fans who are highly critical of him and his play. But his play during the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs, and the increased responsibilities placed on his shoulders, are strong evidence that much of that criticism is unwarranted.

LA Kings defenseman Jake Muzzin, shown here checking
Chicago Blackhawks superstar center Jonathan Toews.

EL SEGUNDO, CA — If there is anything you can bank on when the Los Angeles Kings are in action, at least this season, it has been that social media will be abuzz with criticism of defenseman Jake Muzzin, who has been the frequent, almost constant target of the wrath of Kings faithful when things are not going well for the team.

Some limit their complaints to individual plays, when an obvious mistake was made, while others seem to believe that he is a catastrophe on skates, the worst defensemen to have ever picked up a hockey stick.

In fact, the criticism has been so intense that a Twitter hash tag was created for whenever Muzzin does something perceived to be negative: #MuzzKill.

Read more of this post

LA Kings-Anaheim Ducks: It’s Still Early, But Anze Kopitar Is Winning The Matchup With Ryan Getzlaf

AUDIO INTERVIEWS: Listen to audio of May 6 interviews with Anze Kopitar, Mike Richards, Matt Greene, Jeff Schultz, and head coach Darryl Sutter.

LA Kings center Anze Kopitar
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/

ANAHEIM AND EL SEGUNDO, CA — Heading into the second round playoff series between the Los Angeles Kings and the Anaheim Ducks, a matchup that Southern California hockey fans have been waiting twenty years for, much of the hype focused on the battle between two of the National Hockey League’s best centers, Anze Kopitar of the Kings, and Ryan Getzlaf of the Ducks.

Getzlaf is a finalist for this season’s Hart Trophy, awarded to the NHL’s Most Valuable Player, while Kopitar is a finalist for the Selke Trophy, awarded to the league’s top defensive forward.

Looking at their offensive numbers, Getzlaf is fifth in playoff scoring with three goals and seven assists for ten points, with a +1 plus/minus rating and six penalty minutes in seven playoff games.

Read more of this post

Finally…A True LA Kings-Anaheim Ducks Rivalry Is About To Be Born

AUDIO INTERVIEWS: Includes audio of May 1 media conference call with Los Angeles Kings center Jarret Stoll, defenseman Matt Greene, and head coach Darryl Sutter..

LA Kings center Jarret Stoll.
(click above to view larger image)

LOS ANGELES — When the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim became a National Hockey League team in the 1993-94 season a rivalry was born between them and their neighbor, who played about 35 miles north, the Los Angeles Kings.

Since that time, whether it was at what was then the Great Western Forum in Inglewood, California, the Kings’ first permanent home, to the Arrowhead Pond of Anaheim, now known as Honda Center, and then to Staples Center in Downtown Los Angeles, there is a lot more trash talking between fans than usual when the two teams go head-to-head.

Read more of this post

LA Kings D Matt Greene Is Focused On His Own Situation, As Usual

AUDIO: Story includes audio of media interviews with Los Angeles Kings defenseman Matt Greene and head coach Darryl Sutter.

Los Angeles Kings defenseman Matt Greene, shown here during a recent practice, is
biding his time, waiting for an opportunity to return to the lineup.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: David Sheehan/

EL SEGUNDO, CA — Whenever the Los Angeles Kings hit a cold streak, and they’re trying to figure out what their problems are, one player you can count on to accept responsibility and look only at himself is veteran defenseman and alternate captain Matt Greene.

In those instances, Greene will usually say something like he did on January 3: “You can only speak for yourself…I can’t talk for anybody else in this room. I can only talk for myself, and I have to get back to [playing well] to help our team.”

Fast forward to the present: Greene has been a healthy scratch for the last three games—he has not dressed since January 2 at St. Louis, an embarrassing 5-0 blowout loss, the culmination of a disastrous road swing in which the Kings lost all four games.

Read more of this post


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 160 other followers