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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 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

LA Kings On Short Road To Recovery After Game 3 Flop Against San Jose

The Los Angeles Kings gather around head coach Terry Murray on April 20, 2010, at the Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo, California, as
they prepared for Game 4 of their first round playoff series against
the San Jose Sharks on April 21, 2011.
Photo: David Sheehan

EL SEGUNDO, CA — The morning after the worst come-from-ahead loss in their playoff history, the Los Angeles Kings hit the ice at their practice facility, not to mention the road to recovery, after Game 3 of their first round playoff series on April 19, a game that may be remembered as the Flop On Figueroa.

In case you missed it, the Kings had a 4-0 lead early in the second period, and then got complacent. They allowed five goals in the period, along with another in overtime, gift-wrapping a 6-5 win for the San Jose Sharks, who now hold a 2-1 series lead going into Game 4 tonight at Staples Center in Los Angeles. Read more of this post

They Must Use A Dart Board To Make Decisions At NHL Headquarters

LOS ANGELES — The first two days of the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs are now in the books, but, disappointingly, one of the most memorable aspects of the playoffs so far is the fact that how the National Hockey League handles supplementary discipline is still little more than a joke.

Logo courtesy National Hockey League

Before you start rolling your eyes, this is not really about the merits of Los Angeles Kings center Jarret Stoll’s hit from behind on San Jose Sharks defenseman Ian White in Game 1 of their Western Conference Quarterfinal series on April 14. It is also not about if Sharks defenseman Jason Demers should have been suspended for his hit on Kings left wing Ryan Smyth in the same game. Even the punishment Anaheim Ducks right wing Bobby Ryan should receive for stomping on Nashville Predators defenseman Jonathon Blum’s’s foot in Game 2 of their first round series on April 15 is not what this story is about.

These incidents shine an ultra-bright spotlight on the haphazard way the NHL hands out fines and suspensions. Indeed, it often seems that whether or not the incident results in an injury, along with the severity of the injury, dictates whether or not a suspension is handed down, not to mention the number of games. Read more of this post

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