Takes and trash talk from both ALL sides of the NHL's most obscure PATHETIC* rivalry

* Thanks, Kevin Lowe!

Monday, November 03, 2008

10 Games In

Record: 3-6-1 (27 Goals Scored, 29 Goals Against)

Special Teams: 15.4 PP% (24th), 86.7 PK% (6th)

Top Scorer: Dustin Brown, Alex Frolov, Anze Kopitar tied with 7

Best Forward: Alex Frolov

Best Defenseman: Kyle Quincey

Best Goaltender: Jason Labarbera

Biggest Surprise: Oscar Moller

Biggest Disappointment: Jason Labarbera

Review: Basically, everyone the Kings were counting on have failed while others have come out of nowhere. The Kings needed big seasons out of Jack Johnson, Jason Labarbera, Ted Purcell, Brian Boyle, and Matt Moulson; instead, Johnson's hurt, Labarbera has been lackluster with ample playing time, and the Kings' three-headed Manchester Monster have all failed to secure a spot in the NHL. Meanwhile, teenagers like Drew Doughty and Oscar Moller are playing some of the best hockey on the team and have not been sheltered at all. Wayne Simmonds has been giving energy and an honest effort every night and Patrick O'Sullivan has been excellent despite missing all of training camp.

The Kings still haven't found a rotation that works on offense. Dustin Brown and Anze Kopitar have been decent but need to contribute at even strength. Alex Frolov played well with Michal Handzus but has now been combined with Jarret Stoll and Oscar Moller. So far the results have been good. Handzus is now playing with Wayne Simmonds and Patrick O'Sullivan but the line hasn't had time to gel. The 4th line has been pretty terrible: Derek Armstrong has been giving an honest effort, but Raitis Ivanans looks superfluous and Brian Boyle just looks confused.

The team's weakness was supposed to be defense but so far the defense has been great at limiting shots and 2nd chances. The Kings are 10th in goals against, a ranking that shows that the team's record is perhaps deceiving.

Looking Forward: The Kings continue playing most of their games at home, with 7 at home and 3 on the road in the next 1o games. I imagine the Kings will get better as Anze Kopitar gets out of his early-season malaise and the lines firm up, but the Kings need to hurry up and pick up some points pretty soon. Most of their games in the 2nd half of their season are on the road and they have a lot of back-to-back games; even if they're better in the 2nd half of the season, their record isn't likely to show it. They need to pick up points while they're at home and their games are spread out. If the Kings are going to make any noise this season they need to start now.

14 comments:

Earl Sleek said...

I believe this breaks the old BoC record for "most consecutive posts using the word 'three-headed'".

Good review, though. Is it time to take Kopitar to the dentist?

If the Kings are going to make any noise this season they need to start now.

Tomorrow should be a good test, but you never know with this zany Ducks squad. Yes, they're on a 7-0-1 streak, but it's been awfully peculiar. The Ducks have had several stretches of miserable hockey within the last two weeks, but they've been scoring furiously enough that it hasn't mattered.

RudyKelly said...

Kopitar looked great last game so he may already be coming out of it.

Ksy92003 said...

"Best Goaltender: Jason Labarbera"

Seriously? Who else would it be? It's not like Ersberg has played at all.

Actually, Rich Hammond at Inside The Kings says that Ersberg will get the start tomorrow. Can't wait until Erik gives up four goals in the first period and people actually chant "We want Jason!"

Earl Sleek said...

Yes, they're on a 7-0-1 streak

Oops, that should say 6-0-1 streak. Premature positivity, I suppose.

Still, it's been a crazy stretch. The Ducks have allowed consecutive goals by all seven of those opponents, but then again, they've led 2-0 or better in five of the seven.

Chris Kontos said...

Yes, LaBarbera is the Kings best goaltender. But what is best for the Kings isn't necessarily best for the rest of the league.

Ksy92003 said...

Oops, that should say 6-0-1 streak. Premature positivity, I suppose.

Don't count your chickens before they hatch. The Kings did beat the Ducks 6-3 last time they played.

Earl Sleek said...

The Kings did beat the Ducks 6-3 last time they played.

Yeah, even my memory's not that bad.

Still, the Kings have taken points in 3 of 7 games since then, and the Ducks have taken points in 8 of 10 since then, so we'll have to see how the Kings do against a Ducks squad with its scorers finally awake.

And "awake" probably isn't doing the Ducks any justice, as I can't really recall the last time any Duck was in the top-10 in league scoring. I'm pretty sure it was in the Kariya-Selanne days.

Jargon said...

Is Terry Murray eligible for 'Biggest Surprise'? I don't think anyone expected him to play the Shell Game with positions more than Crow.

I blame the Price is Right appearance. (and Gauthier...for everything)

Earl Sleek said...

I blame the Price is Right appearance. (and Gauthier...for everything)

Oh, that's right, isn't that airing this week? Wednesday, I think?

Somebody confirm. I wanna see it through TV-eyes.

Ksy92003 said...

The Price is Right is gonna be on this Wednesday, I'm fairly certain.

Somebody record it and post it here, since I'm gonna be at school at that time.

Earl Sleek said...

Somebody record it and post it here

You're talking to one of the most inept set of technology users on the planet, don't forget.

I'll record it for my own viewing, but I have no idea how to turn that into something postable (draw a cartoon?). We'll keep our eyes open for postings from slightly-lesser techno-idiots, though.

Ksy92003 said...

Well, you could at least tell me if it's worth watching. I somehow suspect it wouldn't be.

Brad said...

Can't wait until Erik gives up four goals in the first period and people actually chant "We want Jason!"

At that point, I'll turn in my Ersberg jersey and begin the Zatkoff chants.

Ksy92003 said...

At that point, I'll turn in my Ersberg jersey and begin the Zatkoff chants.

You have an Ersberg jersey? So sorry.. It's like when I bought a Stephane Fiset jersey back in 2001 before I knew that he was traded to Montreal. I always wondered why it was on sale.