Hold on one second

I miss one game, to watch my high school play its rival, and this happens?

Manny Legace gets hurt by Sarah Palin’s carpet?

Jason LaBarbera records a shutout?

St. Louis and its 40-percent power play goes 0-for-4 against the Kings, who are STILL perfect on the penalty kill, their weakest skill for three years running?

I think I’m being Punk’d. Somebody tell me what really happened.

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  • http://hbshakes.blogspot.com Shakes

    I don’t want to say correlation is causation Rich, but you missed the game and we did quite well. When you watch the games we…well….ahem….let’s just say we haven’t been to the playoffs for 5yrs

  • Stillkingly

    Don’t look now, but the kings are playing well!! TM has come in and changed our team, our defense is measurably improved and the PK, WOW!

    Andy M said three times that they knew they were playing a good, hard working team. We played smart and took advantage of their turnovers.

    I am really excited, our team is cliking, our boys are having fun it shows they believe in TMs system

    GO KINGS GO

  • http://frozenroyalty.net GMatsuda

    Rich…you are no longer allowed to watch anymore Kings games. :-)

  • Rich Hammond

    I’m open to taking bribes to avoid Kings games, if that’s the will of the people… Just kidding.

  • Anonymous

    The season is still young but this was by far the best game. We had great offensive pressure all night and what I really liked is how the guys stuck up for eachother(even Brad Richardson fought). Were gonna lose some games but they will be exciting to watch.

  • SuperSonic420

    What happened was just the perfect road victory! Dustin Brown finally breaks out?! Kyle Quincy scores a seeing eye goal from the point! The PK is dominant once again! Sully is dominant once again!! Barbs doesnt get a lot of shots, but saves the ones he has to en route to the shutout! Great game!! Hey Rich, does your high school have any more rivals, and can you get one scheduled for monday?!

    Was it just me or did anyone else get flashbacks to 2003-2004 after watchin the Manny Legace injury? I think Andy Murray is cursed!

  • ryan oliver

    It was the best team effort I have seen since the LAPD era. Every single player did what they had to and thats how they won. Calder played great and I actually thought he tipped the first goal. Even Ivanans played great. Nobody would fight him though. Greta win, not even Anthony can say anything bad about this. Well, he probably will say “Lababrbera only had 16 shots, even Cloutier would have had a shutout”. Something like that

  • Nick

    “Manny Legace gets hurt by Sarah Palin’s carpet?”

    Unfortunate choice of words or intentional innuendo?

    It was probably the best game the Kings have played since 05-06 (I’m thinking the 6-0 game against Boston, the game before Buffalo dismantled us and sent our season spiraling towards the drain).

  • cristobal

    When is Terry Murray going to realize he needs to play Ivan on the right point for power plays?!?!?! haha…what a shot Ivan!
    The only problem I have with this game is that we still have no clue where Labarbara is at. One of the best defensive efforts I’ve ever seen by a Kings team. Harrold?!?!?! I didn’t see him make one mistake and he can think and skate with the puck. I know he’s not Bobby Orr but even if he’s a filler guy when there are injuries, I don’t think the NHL game is beyond him.

    The Bloody Best thing about this Kings team is how they look like sinking the fangs in and finishing off the opponent. Keep going for goals and demoralize the other team. I loved that. I don’t think we’ll ever see an Andy Murray team do that.

  • Marty

    Sarah is our new mascot.I can hear it now “Sarah show us your carpet” Yes!

  • jet

    shutout the best offensive team in the league.
    Shutdown the best PP in the league.
    4 fights, from a 37 year old to a 20 year old.
    Barbs stuffs a one on one while the Blues were short handed.
    We got our second goal in the first and only allowed about a dozen shots after that.
    Brown, Kopi, Richardson, Fro, Zeus all great defensive games. I can only remember 2 out numbered attacks in the 2nd and 3rd, the shorthanded one and a 3on2.
    Only two very minor negatives, brown and kopi still played quite a few minutes in the 3rd. Maybe TM wanted to get Barbs the shutout. Second, the Blues really went after Moeller. He took it fairly well, but he is going to be sore for tomorrow’s game.

    One question Rich, the blues announcers kept saying that the Kings are the 3rd youngest team in the league. Do you know the 2 teams younger than us?

  • Duckhunter

    Best overall game I’ve seen the Kings play in many years. Games like this can really get you excited.

    Handzus line continues to amaze me. I’m not real sure that line can play any better. I don’t see a single weak spot in that group. Somebody please tell me when Fro has played better?

    Is it possible O’Sull made the 1st line what it was last year? Is he not playing great? We might have to give him an extension already.

    Brown played well, Calder did his job as I suspected, Kopi??.. Look out when the top line starts producing in full force.

    Defense and PK, outstanding!!!!!

    LaBarb got a shutout….what else is there to say?

    Team unity…..Priceless

  • deadcatbounce

    This is what happens when you play 60 minutes! Hope they can feed off of this impressive victory!

  • Meg

    Yes Rich, there really is a Santa Claus!

    I was listening on the radio stuck in traffic waving my arms out of the convertible top and screaming at the top of my lungs with every goal. I think I caused a traffic jam on the 101! I LOVE this team!!!

    Personally, I think it’s the ping pong tourney that’s bringing out all this competitive spirit. If no one else in the NHL figures out our secret, we just might make the playoffs!!!!

    But someone PLEASE bring Kevin Westgarth back to give Simmonds some fighting lessons, or make him stop. The boy has no game!

  • Will Hutchison

    Agree with most of the posts I read.

    Does anyone else see Simmonds picking up bits and pieces of Frolov’s moves down low? It seems to me that he is learning how to spin off of defenders and when to move his feet on the cycle.

    Moller is looking like the real deal. It remains to be seen what becomes of the slick little Swede in a really physical game, but he usually acquits himself very well.

    Doughty, Stoll, and Brown were all +3 as well.

  • Mark Hartsook

    Well if the kings shut teams out when rich doesn’t watch. What does that mean for rich?

  • Anonymous

    Meg:

    I think Simmonds did well in his fight he held his own against an oppenent who has had his share of nhl fights. And I love how no one on the blues would drop the gloves with Ivanans but they wanna go after OD lol.

  • Anonymous

    What you missed Rich was as perfect of a game as T. Murray could have drawn up. You clearly could see what he wants the team to do (and also how it differs from the Crawford era). 60 minutes of aggressive, relentless, forechecking. Long stetches where the Blues never even got across the blue-line. Turnovers leading to goals. A bit of toughness. But the most impressive thing was the 60 minute effort; the pressure was constant. The Blues had maybe three good shifts the entire game. We had more chances on their PP than they did. Truly, a complete game. Who are these guys?

    Criticism: Barbs can be scary when he over-commits, taking himself too far away from the goal. The Kings’ “top” line looks like a third-line in terms of effectiveness. The Handzeus and Stoll lines are simply out-performing Kopi’s. Kopitar is lacking aggressiveness and his point total reflects this. Yes, he got an A for winning a face-off, and that’s important, but otherwise he looks a little out of place. Brown had a nice goal off of a Blues’ giveaway, but zero hits. And Calder was Calder, hustle and pressure, but very little productivity. People call for Sully to be moved “up”, but why mess up his line which is producing? It’s time for Kopi to step it up and lead his line.

    Last thing: Drew Doughty led the Kings in ice-time (helped by OD taking a 5-4-fighting) and he was solid. Few, very few, mistakes, rookie or otherwise. Impressive.

  • parineum

    Great team/defensive victory by the Kings… Where is Kopitar and when will he be back?

  • The Little Lebowski

    By far the Kings best game so far. I liked the offensive pressure all night.

    This team is so different, so exciting this year, I’m sort of giddey. The style of hockey our guys are playing is off the chart compared to under Crawford, which is a tribute to Terry Murray. Andy Murray must have been shocked.

    OUR PK stopped the top PP in the league. That F-ing rules!!

    TM looks good coming back with Barbs, he played a great game, certainly the D in front of him was super solid. I have been more critical of Barbs than most of you and although I’m far from sold on him, tonight he bounced back huge.

    Let’s all of us hope that the boys will keep this going.

    Go KIngs!!

    Go Obama!!

    Peace!

  • The Little Lebowski

    Thank you Sarah Palin!!!

  • Paincorp

    Solid 60 minutes. What was the turnover ratio, like 14 to 3 / SL to LAK? We were lucky on 2 occasions: 1- when we gave up a turnover and they missed the shot from point blank in the 2nd (I believe). 2- On the last SL PP when McDonald had a wide open net and Lablahblah’s psychokinesis forced the shot wide. I STILL can’t believe that stayed out! Glad it did.

    Now I’m bent that Fox isn’t showing the Nashville game tomorrow. It really makes no sense to me. Send Jim and Bob 90% of the way there just to have them come back? Why not let ‘em call the game? Some other broadcasting company own the right to tomorrow or what? A service I would appreciate is knowing if there is any way to see a ‘dark’ game for us, like tomorrow anywhere, else besides Center Ice (For those of us who don’t have it) on a regular basis. Anyone know? I really don’t want to pay $6 to see it online as the quality sucks.

    For a young D corps we sure aren’t playing young…

  • typicaljs

    wow christobal, please tell me you missed some point in the game to go drinking or something. the ONLY mistake made in this game was Harrold trieng to make a breakout pass across the middle of the ice was there was a blues player there. Otherwise, the epitome of a solid, 60 minute, team effort. I love watching this team care about the defensive end first and then the offensive end second. To make things even better, everyone stood up for everyone and I’m sure they saw the benefits of that tonight. That was a great game to watch, especially seeing Odonnel and Greene dropping the gloves for their team mates when need be. Good thing Jansen wasn’t such a complete waste of a hockey player, or else he would probally be in a hospital courtsey of Ivanans. I guess that’s a smart move on his part career-wise, but other than that I give him a fat F for playing like a complete sissy when trying to fill the role as his team’s enforcer. Yeah, throw a check with your hands in Osullivans face but when Ivanans comes after you hold back until the refs are in the middle of everything. There’s a reason that guy is no longer welcome in new jersey.

  • Deano Lombardo

    Sarah Palin should be at EVERY Kings game……soak that one in!

  • Sticks

    I agree with y’all. What a game! I kept waiting for breakdown and what…it never came. Imagine that. The team looked great. TEAM what a concept!

  • Paul From Oxnard

    I agree with Duckhunter. This was one of the Kings best games since 2003. While they did have a little trouble clearing their own zone at times, when they did, they pretty much dominated St. Louis.

    And did anyone catch the shot Bob Miller took at the L.A. Times? Rich, you’ll like this. Late 3rd period Bob and Jim Fox were mentioning that all 30 NHL teams were playing Saturday (today), and Bob said something along the lines of “but that’s no problem for the L.A. Times. They don’t print box scores or even recaps anymore.” I wonder if Bob reads this blog? :D

  • Brian

    It’s great to see this team coming together and standing up for each other. As much as I wish someone would have dropped Jansen, taking a stupid penalty would not have been worth it. A shutout victory is much sweeter. That’s smart hockey.

  • Kevin

    This was the best game of the young season. It was the first time all season that the Kings have played a complete, 60-minute game. That’s the only way you can hold your opposition to 15 shots.

    Not only that, but the guys who we expect to get the offense finally got it going. O’Sullivan (team-high +7), Stoll (+5) and Brown (E) were all a +3. Doughty went +3 also, giving him an impressive +6. A rookie defenseman with such high expectations for this team having a +6 in the team’s first six games, you can’t be more impressed with the way he has played. I hope he stays past the tenth game of the season on Thursday.

    And being paired with a veteran like O’Donnell, a +5 himself, is really doing wonders for his development. I can truly say, for the first time in five years, that I am so excited about the direction this team is heading and it’s not out of the question to see them fight for a playoff spot this season, especially if their penalty kill remains pitch perfect.

    It was even a good sign to see O’Donnell, Greene, Richardson, and Simmonds all getting in fights. These guys are sticking up for their teammates, and that’s a camaraderie that is very important to a successful club. I don’t know if it’s because of the ping-pong table, or the fact that guys didn’t like playing for Marc Crawford, but they certainly look like they’re having much more fun on the ice this year than the Crawford years.

    The only disappointment after this game was the fact that Handzus was held off the scoresheet, and who would’ve thought last year that this would be a ‘disappointment’.

  • nykingfan

    Oh momma this team is exciting to watch!
    I can’t believe how TM has got this team playing as such a cohesive unit so early in the season.
    He’s my 6 game coach of the year pick.

    That was a complete team effort. The forwards were backchecking…I can’t remember any odd man rushes by the Blues all night. Barbs wasn’t busy, but he made the saves when necessary.
    I love watching this team play…I’m just pissed the game isn’t on tonight.

  • Gary

    Meg,

    Simmonds opponent, being smaller, was hanging on for dear life. Simmonds wouldn’t let him take him down, wanted to keep him on his feet. When the smaller Blues player just hugged him to keep him close, what else could he do? You don’t have to win the fights, just show the other team you aren’t going to take the BS. Especially when winning.

    Love the fire! Love Greene! Love the Defense!

  • anthony

    I guess.
    Ryan Oliver took the words right out of my mouth.
    Hope we see the same result in Nashville.

  • Brian S

    I think it was Moller who got back and poked the puck away from behind on the only legitimate two on one the Blues had all night. What puck possession in the attacking zone! Just fantastic. The team played with so much composure.

    I know it’s a long season and we are supposed to be competing for Tavarres, but I really get the feeling that all the pundits have underestimated the talent level and the chemistry of this team. We’ll see tonight how we do in back to back road games, but wow it is really exciting to be a Kings fan again.

  • Rod Serling

    A dedicated sports journalist takes a night off to relax and watch his high school team. He comes back only to find :

    - the 3rd youngest team in the NHL continue perfect penalty killing against a team whose power play runs at 40%

    - a “back-up at best” goaltender record his first shutout of the season

    - karma has bitten Dave Checketts in the butt by injuring his goalie on the carpet Sarah Palin used

    Rich Hammond has entered…the Twilight Zone !

  • teach

    All I want to know is this. Is Tennessee a swing state? Because I would like Sarah Palin to drop the puck tonight as well.

    Wow! What a complete game by the Kings!

  • Anonymous

    …and YES Rich. There really IS a Santa Claus!!

  • Stand Up Chuck!

    So far so good. 27 pks in a row (#1 w/ Minn in league – thats with over 100 pim to date>) Top 5 team in face offs

    Need to focus on scoring -1 as a team. Bottom 10 teams in scoring (off set by only allowing 14 goals this year (4th best in the league)). I think that as the confidence builds the goals will come.

    What’s going on with Armstrong. One shot on goal in 6 games. No points. -5. I’m not sure about ice time but he seems to be getting his usual minutes. I may be wrong.

    Regardless of the numbers there is definitely a chemistry building.

    I believe they will maintain this play through the end of December.

    The real test comes in that dreaded month of January.

    Go Kings!!!

  • mark4kings

    What a great all around effort.
    Come Monday, we’re gonna see how good these kids can really be. Will everyone please drop what they’re doing and come out to Staples for that one. I HATE IT when there’s more Wings fans then Kings fans.
    Anyone but me notice that when things go well, Anthony can’t think of anything to say?

  • nykingfan

    Cmon Anthony
    Speak up and join the chorus singing the praises of DL and TM.

    I’m excited to see how we do against a team like Detroit on Monday. A small little measuring stick early in the season.

  • SuperSonic420

    Anthony cant think of anything to say because Moulson was scratched and Harold played. Ersberg didnt play once again, but Barbs had the shutout. Dustin Brown scored….without Sully on his line! Kyle Quincy proved he belongs in the lineup, and even Kyle Calder had a decent game playing on the first line! He’s got no material left! Or maybe hes just finally done embaressing himself! Yea, I doubt that too!

  • smokiemcpot

    Well I do think the kings played solid in the 2nd and 3rd but did anyone else see the scoring chances for the Blues in the first. I have to admit I thought that first period looked a little shaky by the Kings until the second goal went in. After that they were really solid. Hats off to Barbs for the shut out but some of those saves were almost goals. Don’t get too excited yet people, there is still work to be done. Although in the last two games the other team has had less than 35 shots. Some good. Some bad. But overall we got the two points and thats what matters. GO KINGS GO.

  • Anonymous

    It’s early in the season, but it is quite apparent that the coaching staff and DL has made an immediate impact on the work effort, cohesiveness and mindset of this team.

    After six games, the Kings rank: 1st in Fewest Shots to opponents. T-1st on Penalty Kill. 4th in total Goals Against.

    And, ya’ll must have admired the grit the team showed last night. Midway through the 3rd Kings leading 3-0, the Blues came out trying to hit everyone in a Kings jersey. Running Moller, Calder and Simmonds. Then, Captain Brown comes out on the very next shift. Blues defensive turnover at the blue line, 23 with a break. Slap Shot. Score. In your face, Blues. Game over!

    KEEP WORKING BOYS.. GO KINGS!

  • EJ

    There’s quite a euphoria here, that’s for sure.

    The Kings played well in all three zones. They made things happen. But . . . .

    People, the Blues were AWFUL. The Blues were FLAT. The Blues took the night OFF. It’s been a while since I’ve seen an NHL team look that bad.

    Perspective.

  • Beavis

    all i have to say is Sully is on his way to Super Stardom!

  • JDM

    Not one player had a poor performance last night. does anyone remember the last time that happened??!!

    Damn our team is fun. Just goes to show that a good coach and system rules all in hockey.

    I think I have nickname Moller ‘Moller the Maniac’. That kid is everywhere on the ice, makes a smart play EVERY shift and just hounds the puck. He got smashed a few times, didn’t faze him at all. Even the 4th line was strong and getting chances.

    Not ONE bad thing to say about that game. Except maybe that Kopi needs to pull the other bolt out of his neck. He had a better game but there were a few loose pucks he just kind of drifted towards and missed because of it.

    So happy to see Brown step up as captain and make Tkachuk look stupid, stripping him and scoring a beaut.

    Its good to be a King.

  • madA

    I came into this season with low expectations and high enthusiasm. I think my expectations may catch up with my enthusiasm pretty damn soon if they keep playing like this.

  • Sev the Kings fan from Montreal

    Wow what a game, I don’t remember the last time I saw the kings dominate a game like this. I don’t believe it was a tough game for Labs but in the first period, he did make some key saves and during the game, he did make the necessary saves so well done!

    BTW, is it true the game tonight is not broadcast for TV? I cant find it on nhl center ice…

  • Sev the Kings fan from Montreal

    Oh and Rich, if this is how the kings play when you don’t watch, maybe all we need is for you to stop watching to get the cup this year, forget about the rebuild effort, just keep Rich away from the game!!! :)

  • jet

    So my neighbor, the Sharks fan, throws cold water on me this morning with “good thing you didn’t lose, the Kings would have been the worst team in hockey. Please win tonight or i’ll be mowing the lawn tomorrow in a wetsuit.

  • Quisp

    Tonight’s Kings game is the ONLY one (of the fifteen games being played today, involving every NHL team) not being televised, not nationally, not locally. Maybe we’ll get some cell phone video footage.

  • Moondoggie

    Rich, you’re so pathetic…Which high school did you attend and would choose to miss a KINGS game??? Did you go to Grant?? C’mon, fess up!

    Seriously tho, this was a really fun game to watch and one of the best Kings games I’ve seen them play in a long, very long time, a couple of years at least. Nick, Meg, Duckhunter, Nykingsfan, right on! This team is fun to watch and they’re only going to get better as they build their confidence. Tonight will be an interesting test, back to back on the road. Nashville is rested, not having played since Thursday. However, the Kings are young and will have their young legs with them. Again, with youth, their seamingly endless amount of energy will show, one of the benefits of having a young team. It should be fun to watch but….no TV??? I don’t have Center Ice, how depressing…..Back to last nights game:

    Kinda felt bad for Andy Murray out there tonight, especially when Jim Fox said his job may be in jeopardy. Still tho, the Kings flat-out outplayed the Blues. LA’s forcheck was amazing, the two turnovers by St. Louis that lead to easy LA goals were pathetic and Brownie was right on top of both of them. Overall, a great team effort by the Kings. Speaking of which, team defense (I can’t even believe I’m saying that on a Kings blog)….The Kings looked solid, pure, plain and simple. LA shut down a very good skating St. Louis team tonight. I don’t think it was so much what the Blues didn’t do as to what the Kings wouldn’t allow them to do. It was a great effort by all.

    Matt Green is certainly playing well and Kyle Quincey, what was Detroit thinking when they tried to send him down??? Drew Doughty, our man-child, playing the game like he’s been playing it for years. And do you guys actually get excited when Moller or Simmonds step out on the ice? You can just feel something good is going to happen every time they’re out there.

    This was a great win by a team that isn’t supposed to be very good defensively. Terry (the other) Murray has this team playing well. He just doesn’t get excited or rattled if something goes wrong which didn’t happen too often tonight. On to Nashville, again we’re at .500. Who would have even thought??? Do you believe??? Way to go DL!

    Go Kings!

  • pete

    It all depends if your High School won. If they lost, you can stop watching the Kings.

  • Duckhunter

    Quisp, what do you think about last nights game? What did you see that you liked and disliked? Pretty good outing don’t you think? I’m really hoping the kids can hold up all year. That’s a lot to ask, but they’re hammering it right now and a let down would be very noticeable in the team play. They are a big part of this group already. That has been pleasant surprise to me.

  • Moondoggie

    Nykingsfan…My apologies…I mentioned forecheck, you mentioned backcheck, both were excellent in this game. The Kings were all over the ice all night long. Every time the Blues would look up, they had a King right in their face and remember, St. Louis is a very good skating team! LA kept them bottled up, completely. The hit by Jansen on Sully was BS, in my opinion it looked like intent to injure, the only reason he got away with it was that he didn’t use his stick. Of course when Ratis showed up Jansen didn’t. I’m glad Sully wasn’t hurt….

    We’ll see how the Kings do tonight….

    Detroit…Wow. That will be a test. I hope our kids don’t look at the Wings the same way we used to look at the Russian National team, in total awe. That will be a real test for our young team. But…can you imagine what it will do for their confidence if they win??? I just may have to fly in for this one….

  • Anonymous

    SuperSonic420 said: “Dustin Brown scored….without Sully on his line!”

    O’Sullivan was on the ice when Brown scored his goal.

  • Baumgartner22

    for as well as the kings played, the blues, conversely, played poorly. the kings capitalized on turnovers, but some of those turnovers weren’t even forced. but sound positioning by the kings lead to goals.

    however, i have a bone to pick with nashville. why are they not televising the game? what’s the point of having the center ice package if i can’t see the games that the kings aren’t broadcasting? what am i going to do instead? watch jackets vs. wild? the world series?

  • deadcatbounce

    This is what can happen when a team plays for 60 minutes! Hope they can get some confidence with their impressive victory!

  • Quisp

    Duckhunter:

    I thought Quincey was great and I’m resisting hyperbole at this point, but I’m thinking it.

    Quincey, Moller, Simmonds and Doughty are only going to get more comfortable.

    Calder on the first line? Eh, no. But, really, right now, Brown/Kopitar/Calder is the third line. POS/Stoll/Moller is #1, Frolov/Handzus/Simmonds is #2. I’m (about half) kidding.

    I have no doubt that Kopitar is a sleeping giant, he will start scoring. That the team is playing well without him scoring goals right now has got to be seen as great news. I believe Jim Fox pointed out last night that the Kings have spread their scoring out over a large number of players.

    I really think the Kings will improve as the season goes on, as opposed to crapping out down the stretch. If they can stick to their game plan — balanced lines, big ice time for the “kids” — and stay at .500 into January, I think they have a chance at turning it up a notch and squeaking into the playoffs.

    I was wrong about POS’s ability to step right in and play up to his usual level without training camp.

    I think it’s worthwhile to be patient in the attempt to get both the Stoll line (with POS) and the Kopitar line (without POS) scoring. I still think Purcell might be the answer there.

    Looking forward to Clune.

    That’s about when I think Calder gets waived.

    Richardson looked good, too, I thought. Clune/Boyle/Richardson? Yeah, I think so.

    Good article on-line somewhere (Hockey News, I think) on how Moller, not Fabian Brunstrom (sp?), is the Swedish star of the future to watch… No kidding.

    Doughty is leading all NHL rookies in plus/minus and minutes. On a team that’s supposed to be the worst in the league.

    But…isn’t. People are starting to get that now.

  • cristobal

    Quisp – where’s your thoughts?
    JDM? Wavesinair? Anthony? I like all the post game reviews…where are they?
    Let’s keep in mind this was the Blues. One game at a time, right?
    Rather than wondering where Anthony is, I’m wondering where the Labs bashers are? 6 games into the season he has a shutout and held San Jose to a 1-0 loss.
    If the Blues ever want to move that Bishop kid, I think DL should consider it.
    When will we see an experimental KIDS line with Moller Boyle and Simmonds. I love what M and S are doing but just want to see it a few times. If they get out there without any vets to defer to it may just lead to an incredible line. Moller and Simmonds need to stay in LA for the next 20 years.
    How does Preissing get back into the lineup? He’s gonna have to wait.

    From some comments on television it sounds as though the ICE PROBLEM is as bad in St. Louis as it is in LA. I hope the NHL does something about it. Its embarrassing. There are A LOT of young players in the NHL these days and they’re trying to make plays that the ice surface is prohibiting.

    Finally, as much as I love this Kings team, the quality of the NHL seems to be weaker than ever in the NHL. Colorado, Carolina, an St. Louis all seem to have little dependable quality compared to just a few years ago. Consider the quality of these teams and realize that the Isles, Preds, Blue Jackets, Leafs, Vancouver, Panthers, and Bolts are all rebuilding and have no depth. I think the NHL looks to be in a paradigm shift. Oh yeah, throw in Philly, too.

  • mrk

    EJ

    “It’s been a while since I’ve seen an NHL team look that bad.” – Last years Kings were playing that bad.

    Nick said:
    “Manny Legace gets hurt by Sarah Palin’s carpet?”

    Reminds me of the Family Guy episode where Quagmire was asked to tear off Louises’ carpet and he says “Quite honestly Louise, I was thinking something else when you asked me to tear off your carpet”

  • cristobal

    Rich – What are your 5 favorite sports and in what order?

    Isn’t Nashville one of the teams LA was modeling its defensive rebuild upon? It will be interesting to see which defense controls the game.

    I wonder if Detroit would still sign the UFA Stuart and waive Quincey? Its funny but in preseason on NHL network they had a Detroit game and a Lombardi pick from the ’07 draft, Joe Malone, was picked up by Detroit. He looked serious, tough, and determined. I wonder if he’ll be able to fill the hole they were forced into when they had to waive Quincey because of the Salary Cap. The Cap is really starting to impact the league but is it for better or worse?

  • Anonymous

    The right coach DOES make a difference.

    At least so far, hail TM!!

    We have visible STRUCTURE now—-Guys spread-out & in formation at critical junctures
    (defensive situations, esp).

    The lack of screaming and yelling (as reported
    last year) has probably helped too.

    This team plays HARD the majority of the time.

    aND Quincey is truly a gift.

    Moller wears his passion on his Jersey sleeves.

    The energy level was outstanding.
    But,
    young legs can do that, y’ know.

    Our team defense is a major level better than
    last season, at least so far.

    And the guys are definitely sticking up
    for each other, bigtime.:):)

    IMO, we look sorta’ like
    “FLYERS WEST”.

    And that ain’t bad.
    =========================================================
    –Sergei Prozacutov

  • cristobal

    Does anyone else think that Ivan has a career waiting for him after hockey as a Bond Character? Jaws, Tophat, now Ivan the Terrible. I hope he retires a King.

    The most amusing part of last night’s game was Hinote acting like he wanted a piece of Ivan from behind Janssen. Interesting that he settled for a bantam-weight bout with Richardson.
    BTW – Richardson played well. Spirited and energetic.

  • Quisp

    Cristobal –

    I think what you are seeing — which gives rise to your comment “the quality of the NHL seems to be weaker than ever” — is not so much a diminishing of talent as it is a changing of the guard. Aside from Detroit’s (I’m thinking, supernatural) ability to continue to be great long after they’re supposed to start sucking, the perennially top teams (San Jose, Ottawa, Dallas, Colorado, Philly, Detroit*) are starting to show their age, the old familiar names (Stevens, Kariya, Brodeur, Tkachuk, Roenick, Sakic, Amonte, Jagr, Lindros, Chelios, Yzerman, Hasek, Hull, Forsberg, Robataille) are either retired or about to retire, and the next crop (Crosby, Malkin, Ovechkin etc.) is taking over.

  • cristobal

    Quisp – I don’t think its just a changing of the guard. Most of the older players you list were drafted in the 80′s. Where are the Veterans of the late 90′s or early 2K’s? The skill level is always increasing (I think O’Sullivan could have scored 200 goals if he played in ’85) but the rule changes and Salary Cap are creating a situation where proven players are being dropped and “grooming” a player may end up being a waste of money (Quincey was groomed in Detroit and would still be there if not for the new rules). We’re seeing more and more teams that look like World Beaters one night and a High School Fire Drill the next. There’s also so LITTLE quality in net. If the Kings fans think Labs is erratic a look around the league shows little consistency.

    It could be a case where the talents needed 5 years ago are now obsolete. Calder is a perfect example of what used to make-up a power forward. You needed size to battle through the hooking and grabbing. Size will always be an asset, but on ice awareness and good hands are better right now.

  • Quisp

    Cristobal –

    Interesting. I’m not so sure what the cause and effect would be for some of the things you are observing. Certainly the salary cap has changed the landscape to some degree. I’m not sure, specifically, what to make of the inconsistency observation. I can’t say it’s something I have noticed league-wide; but I wonder if it isn’t a reflection of parity. As far as erratic goaltending: this has been true of goalies as a group ever since I can remember; however, maybe the clutch-and-grab/obstruction-filled 90s made goalies seem better than they were (to say nothing of the giant equipment). I would expect that those various changes would exert downward pressure on goalie performances.

    As far as grooming a player turning out to be a waste of money: especially if you don’t manage your assets and salaries with foresight. This is why the POS situation was so pivotal for DL this summer; the cap means that you have to anticipate and predict effects many years down the road; you have to commit to long-term strategies; you have to commit to long-term development of certain players, or, at the very least, certain types of players. Detroit had to give up Quincey because they didn’t want to give up any of those above him on the depth chart. Perhaps the Chelios situation caught them off-guard, in which case it would be similar to what Anaheim went through with Schneider.

    I don’t think development/grooming etc. could ever be considered a waste of money since (to say nothing of the fact that there is no alternative other than unfettered mercenary free-agency) it only becomes a problem when you are at the cap ceiling and by definition are chock full of veteran players. It’s either a champagne problem — if you’re Detroit — or it’s a function of your own desperation and stupidity…as with the Ducks. You always develop under the assumption that many of your picks and prospects aren’t going to pan out, and others are going to be used as tools in trades. If you get lucky beyond your wildest imagination and too many of your prospects pan out, then something’s got to give. You won’t be able to pay them all.

    This is why I like DL’s style. He knows this to be the case. And he’s being very careful. And so far, he hasn’t blinked.

  • Quisp

    Calder is certainly an example of a kind of player that looked better before the rule changes.

  • Baumgartner22

    maybe it’s a good thing tonight’s game isn’t being televised. 3-0?

  • anonymous

    and all of the shots are coning from the middle of the ice. The Kings must be playing very slow.

  • Anonymous

    I wish that I could have missed THIS one…

  • Anonymous

    Ah, just as it should be…..

    All those warm feelings and happy talk farted away into the wind 12 minutes into the first period.

    Labs on the bench, the PK surrendering goals.

    All that’s missing now is the return of King anthony (emphasis on the lower case).

  • Paul From Oxnard

    Sounds like as good as last night’s game was, that’s how bad tonight’s game is for the Kings. LaBarbara didn’t last 13 minutes before he was pulled. And the 1st period isn’t over yet. 3-0 Preds. But, the Kings just got a PP late in the first period, so maybe they can cut into the lead.

  • cristobal

    Lots of great points, Quisp, especially in regard to goalies and the expectations on them. GAA is a stat that always seems to hover up and down. The rules and the equipment have a lot to do with it. It just seems that a decade or so ago there was a plethora of names that were rock solid – Belfour, Cujo, Vernon, Hrudey (yes, Hrudey), Brodeur, Roy, Potvin, Khabibulin, VanBezer, Richter, Barrasso, and others I’m probably forgetting.

    Losing developing players, however, is something I don’t like. I’ve said before that I don’t like the trade/draft/waiver system, but it really is flawed. Luckily the Kings got Quincey, but think also about Bryzgalov. I think its backwards to punish teams for picking good players or developing them well if the Salary Structure forces teams to waive them. Maybe we might be the club losing real talent because of the rules of the Cap. For instance, what if Detroit suffers a rash of injuries in two weeks and have to then turn to unprepared players? Not only does that hurt Detroit, it hurts the quality of the NHL.

    Hey, its fun to be talking about the problems around the league rather than ALL the problems typically plaguing LA. Lombardi’s team is really stuffing my words down my throat and I love it. Even when they’re losing right now, I’m encouraged by the never-quit attitude and how they are going with their own guys. We’re already hearing that Gaborik might like to come here, and we’re the one’s that don’t care. It’s like some John Hughes movie where the hot chicks now want to be with the nerds because they realized how cool he really is. I dunno, bad analogy maybe, but these players are the ones making it happen.

  • dieharddkingsfan38

    STOLL AGAIN! 3-2 we coming back baby

  • SuperSonic420

    Kings down to Nashville in the 2nd, 3-2. Kings gave up their first 2 power play goals and 3 goals in the span of just over 3 mins. Barbs has been pulled and Ersberg is in. Stoll has both King goals and Sully has 2 assists. Anze has the other assist. Kings were outshot 17-5 in the first period. Kings outshooting the Preds 8-1 so far in the second.

    http://sports.espn.go.com/nhl/boxscore?gameId=281025027

  • cristobal

    way to battle back boys.

  • cristobal

    Frown

  • ryan oliver

    Funny. This is the same Kings team that has played the last 6 years. One great game followed by a poor outing. I am not watching or listening, but 5-2 to the Preds is brutal.

  • cristobal

    Gauthier and Greene trailing Harrold in TOI?
    2 quick Nashville goals make it 5-2?
    Did I forget that I’m a jinx?

    Is Labs headed to Ontario?

    I wonder if they’re playing on ice or water?

  • ryan oliver

    5-4 loss. Once again kings only show up in the third. Although, I’m just assuming. But I think there will be alot of 5-4 losses this year. I wonder how bad the 5 goals against were?

  • Anonymous

    New year, new coach, new players…..same outcome.

    You can’t play 40 minutes of hockey and expect to win games.

  • Nick

    sounds like the kings showed up in the 2nd and 3rd (they badly outshot the Preds in the 2nd). it’s all about the 60 minute game, they’ll pull it off once in a while (like last night) and they’ll fail to on other nights (like tonight). they’re keeping every game close at the very least.

  • anthony

    What it this love TM has towards LaBaby.
    This love. This infatuation. This Hard-On he has for him.
    TM should start feeling embarrassed for his feelings.
    Get rid of this goalie.
    ASAP.
    NOW.
    PRONTO.

  • mrk

    It sounded like they were sleeping on the first period. Battled back on the second. Even play on the 3rd w/ Ersberg looking stiff as per Nick Nickson/Daryl Evans.

  • Quisp

    Hard to say what happened since I didn’t even get to listen to the game tonight. Doesn’t seem like either LaBarbera or Ersberg was sharp. PK streak ended, as was bound to happen sooner or later. Two points each for Stoll and POS is a bright spot. As is Quincey, a +2 with the usual huge chunk of icetime. The shot chart for the 1st period shows Nashville gets a ton of shots right down the middle of the slot, which is bad, bad, bad. I’m going to say it’s fatigue.

  • Anonymous

    So Uh..RICH??

    Did you watch the game tonight????? Where you there????

    HHHMMMM?!?!?!?!?!?!!

  • Me

    I take it your Highschool team didn’t play on Saturday when the Kings played the Preds?

  • cristobal

    Fatigue? They’re all 23 years old.

    I’m going to propose some line jugging

    O’Sullivan – Handzus – Brown
    Frolov – Kopitar – Armstrong
    Moller – Boyle – Simmonds
    Ivanans – Stoll – Richardson/Calder

  • ryan oliver

    Cristobal, why line juggle? They 2 more wins then I thought they would have already. This team will play like this all year. One good game followed by 2 bad ones. These are the Kings remember.

  • Old Man

    The Kings are all ready alot better than last year, have faith they will win alot more games than last year. Get to staples and support them.

  • wavesinair

    I guess this blog is dead. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted… j/k.

    But seriously, where’s the coverage?

    There’s one generic associated press report. Nothing on the Kings site, nothing here. Sucks.

    You’d think being at .500 with a chance to go above would have been enough incentive to have a few interviews by the Kings people at the very least. Very poor effort by those people.

  • cristobal

    Ryan oliver – I think, why not? Many coaches juggle lines to spark better play or to see what else will work.
    Also, the defensemen have 1 point in 2 games. I’d like to see them contribute offensively, even if its assists.
    And, I think Handzus is at his best when he can get into a puck possession groove and having our 2 best wingers around him could lead to big numbers for all 3 players while leaving Kopi and Fro together.
    Kopi and Fro on the same line would, I think, lead to a lot of offensive zone possession. Plus, with Armstrong’s craftiness I think they could put up good numbers too. If fro and Kopi were good together I think lots of players could benefit from playing on that line – like Purcell, Moulson, Calder, Richardson, even Ivan.
    The third line I’d really like to see. A real KIDS LINE. Moller and Simmonds, although they’ve been really good, could be better. They’ve not been on the ice enough to rest the top guys. And, if it were a line of Rooks, we’d see them build some chemistry that could work for years. Would the energy and skill of these 3 young guys really blossom into something working together? I think they could do well.
    Stoll on my 4th line isn’t a demotion. Stoll seems to play his game no matter who he plays with and he’s a great defensive forward. If the lines were working together, ideally they’d all be getting similar minutes. Finding a balance across the lines would mean the top forwards would still have something late in the game when they needed to finish off the game or get a tying goal or a winner.
    It seems to me that the offensive needs to make up for the lack of offensive ability on the defense. This team has shown that it can play a complete game and play well at both ends of the ice. But, doing that 82 times is very difficult. The physical game wears on the team and over 82 games there will be mental mistakes with a team this young.
    There was concern before the season about wearing down the future stars by not giving them enough support to get to the next level. It looks as though they’ve got the players to have great years individually, but maybe more juggling and tinkering is needed to find a more balanced team. Everybody getting on the score-sheet and the opposition staying shut down.

    cheers

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