Natural born (penalty) killers?

The most surprising thing about the Kings’ first three games? Certainly the perfect penalty-killing unit, which is 14-for-14. Quite startling when you consider that the Kings finished with the worst penalty-kill percentage in the NHL last season. It was a point of emphasis for new coach Terry Murray from the start of training camp, and it seems to be paying off so far. Here’s what Murray said today about the PK unit…


Question: Three games don’t make a season, obviously, but you can’t be any better on the penalty kill than you’ve been. What have been the biggest improvements there?

MURRAY: “I’m very pleased with the competitiveness and the work. You always look at your penalty killing and you say, well, the best penalty killer on the ice is your goaltender. And (Jason LaBarbera) has been very good. But the structure is in place, and that’s where Mark (Hardy) was working hard with the penalty killers, right from the beginning. He has asked them to perform in certain ways in different areas of the ice, offensive zone and neutral zone, and I think everybody is starting to respond. I think there’s some good pressure on the puck, we’re jumping guys at the right time, reading the opportunity to be able to put pressure on the offensive players, and we’re creating turnovers because of it. When you have that kind of reaction from one guy, everybody else is jumping in and doing the same thing. They’re reading off each other, and that’s the key to having good penalty killing, in my mind. You have four guys there, five with the goalie, that really react to the opportunity. (It’s about) close support, five-foot and 10-foot support, to be able to make little hand-off plays and get the clears.”

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  • anthony

    I’m very impressed with Kings penalty killing.
    Murray seems to have the right strategy and chemistry.
    Now put Sully back on the top line or else.

  • wavesinair

    What’s the word on Calder Rich? What’s your take? I felt like the guy added something postivie to the team last year. Is he trying hard? Is he off his game? Does he just suck or what?

  • Anonymous

    next biggest surprise is goaltending actually it is the bigger surprise because pk was a non issue but it was well known that they could not win with the last years goaltenders meantime game one was a good effort and no cheapies game 2 could have been a shutout and game 3 had many hard saves are we through with needing new goaltenders i think not as yet but just maybe

  • Anonymous

    anthony said:

    “Now put Sully back on the top line or else.”

    Or else what…. You’ll stop taking up space with your normally negative opinion?

    If Moulson can produce on the 1st line think about the potential threat of a 2nd line with Sully, Fro and just about anyone

  • MS

    Yeah, I agree with that. This line would be good(at least on paper):