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It’s Time For LA Kings GM Dean Lombardi To Address His Team’s Futility

What kind of offensive threat would LA Kings center Anze Kopitar
be if he ever learns to take the puck to the net and
shoot from prime scoring areas?
Photo: David Sheehan

LOS ANGELES AND EL SEGUNDO, CA — Through 58 games of the 2011-12 season, one thing is now irrefutable.

When it comes to scoring goals, the Los Angeles Kings are an embarrassing lesson in futility.

There are many opinions and theories out there, attempting to explain the Kings’ woeful inability to score goals. Many point fingers at the coaching staff, and the system the Kings play, among other things. But when you talk to people who really know the game, such as National Hockey League scouts, along with former NHL players and coaches who are involved in the game in various capacities, among the most frequent comments you hear are that the Kings often fail to execute their game plan, and that they do not pay attention to detail on breakout plays, allowing gaps between forwards and defensemen to get too wide, preventing them from generating speed through the neutral zone. Read more of this post

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LA Kings Defenseman Willie Mitchell On Concussions: “I Get Into A Car Wreck Six Times A Night”

When it comes to concussions, Los Angeles Kings
defenseman Willie Mitchell speaks from experience.
Photo: David Sheehan

EL SEGUNDO, CA — We’re not even at the halfway point of the 2011-12 National Hockey League season, but far too many players have already gone down due to concussions.

In no particular order, the NHL has lost stars like Claude Giroux of the Philadelphia Flyers, Milan Michalek of the Ottawa Senators, Jeff Skinner of the Carolina Hurricanes, and Shea Weber of the Nashville Predators, all to concussions.

Most notably, the league has also lost Flyers defenseman Chris Pronger, who is expected to miss the rest of the season, and Pittsburgh Penguins superstar forward Sidney Crosby is out indefinitely after a recurrence of post-concussion syndrome. Read more of this post

2011 Holiday Season Has Los Angeles Kings Looking To Darryl Sutter As Their Savior

Los Angeles Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi (left)
and newly-hired head coach Darryl Sutter (right), shown here
during a December 21, 2011 press conference.
Photo: Gann Matsuda

EL SEGUNDO AND LOS ANGELES, CA — On this Christmas Day 2011, families around the world are celebrating the holiday season, while young children, who have been dreaming for weeks about what Santa Claus might bring them, are, hopefully, waking to find that their dreams have come true.

For the Los Angeles Kings, they are hoping that Santa will bring them the extra goal or two per game that they have sorely missed all season long. They are also hoping that they have found their savior in new head coach Darryl Sutter, the 53-year-old native of Viking, Alberta, who was hired on December 20, replacing Terry Murray, who was fired on December 12, after the Kings slipped and slid their way through the last few weeks. Read more of this post

LA Kings Find Bright Spots During Failed First Test Without Mitchell, Richards in 2-1 Loss To Montreal Canadiens

LOS ANGELES — One game into a stretch in which they will have to do without the services of center Mike Richards and defenseman Willie Mitchell, already, the Los Angeles Kings have shown that there are big reasons for concern after struggling mightily in a 2-1 loss to the Montreal Canadiens during a matinee affair at Staples Center on December 3.

Tomas Plekanec gave the Canadiens a 1-0 lead with a power play goal at 18:39 of the first period.

Andrei Kostitsyn finished off an odd-man rush at 10:48 of the second period, giving the Habs a 2-1 lead, taking advantage of Kings defenseman Matt Greene losing an edge and falling at the Montreal blue line, just inside right point.

The Kings cut the Canadiens’ lead in half at the 13:46 mark of the third period. But before you read on, be advised that California has not fallen into the Pacific Ocean, and you do not need to make sure that your affairs are in order.

Left wing Dustin Penner was the responsible party, scoring his first goal of the season, prompting concerns that some cataclysmic event was upon us.

But that was as close as the struggling Kings could get.

“I thought we had a good first twenty minutes,” said left wing Simon Gagne. “We had a lot of pucks on the net, a lot of shots. The second period, I thought, was not very good. We took a lot of bad penalties, and gave them chances to go on the power play. From that point, we found ourselves, down, 2-0.” Read more of this post

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