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PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2016 8:53 am Reply with quoteBack to top

With the NHL regular season right around the corner, profiles each team leading up to puck drop. Next up are the Los Angeles Kings, who look to defend their 2014 Stanley Cup. Catch up on their summer moves and the issues they face this season, as well as Craig Buttons analysis of their top prospect and an analytical breakdown by TSNs Scott Cullen. Division: Pacific GM: Dean Lombardi Head Coach: Darryl Sutter 2013-14: 46-28-8 (3rd in Pacific) Playoffs: Stanley Cup Champions Goals For: 206 (25th) Goals Against: 174 (1st) PP: 15.1% (27th) PK: 83.1% (11th) That Was Then: They didnt storm through the playoffs as a surprise eighth seed last year, and being the first California team to win the Stanley Cup was already off the table, but the Los Angeles Kings were still more than able to make history on the way to their second Stanley Cup championship in three years. While some teams struggled to find their footing coming out of the Sochi Winter Olympic break, the Kings were on firm ground, winning their first seven games. They then backed that up with another six straight wins from March 20-29th to solidify their place in the playoffs. Despite being the lower seed in the opening round, the Kings, backed by another stellar season from goaltender Jonathan Quick, headed into a matchup with the San Jose Sharks that looked for all intents and purposes to be even. However, the Sharks came flying out of the gate capturing the opening two games of the series by 6-3 and 7-2 margins before taking Game 3 in overtime and grabbing a commanding 3-0 series lead. It was from there that the Kings began to write their names into the NHLs history books. Forward Justin Williams scored twice in Game 4 and Quick posted a Game 5 shutout to help the Kings back into the series with back-to-back victories. Anze Kopitar carried them to a victory in Game 6 and with the Sharks reeling, the Kings scored five unanswered goals in Game 7 to advance into the second round in historic fashion. Joining only the 1942 Toronto Maple Leafs, 1975 New York Islanders, and the 2010 Philadelphia Flyers, the Kings became the fourth all-time team to advance in the NHL playoffs after dropping the first three games of a best-of-seven series. The battle-tested Kings needed that resolve a second time as they faced elimination twice against the Anaheim Ducks, but once again led by the heroics of Williams, were able to keep the season alive with two victories to close the series out in seven. In a rematch of the previous seasons Western Conference Final, the Kings avenged their elimination at the hands of the Chicago Blackhawks in another seven-game battle that cemented Williams reputation as Mr. Game 7. After tying the all-time record for Game 7 goals earlier in the deciding contest, he assisted on the Alec Martinez winner that sent the Kings to their second Stanley Cup Final in three years. From there, the Kings stormed through the New York Rangers in five games to capture the Stanley Cup, thanks to a double overtime winner by Tyler Toffoli in Game 5, allowing the Kings to celebrate the title in front of the home fans. Not surprisingly for his work in the post-season, Justin Williams was awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy for playoff MVP. Scott Cullens Analytics Kings 2013-14 Stats by Quarter Games GPG GAA SH% SV% SAF% PTS% 1-20 2.70 2.40 7.8% .925 56.5% .675 21-41 2.48 1.81 8.5% .958 53.9% .643 42-62 2.00 2.33 5.8% .924 55.3% .476 63-82 2.70 2.05 11.1% .926 58.9% .650 NHL AVG 2.67 2.67 7.8 .922 50.0% .562 Key: GPG= goals per game, GAA= goals-against per game, SH%= even-strength shooting percentage, SV%= even-strength save percentage, SAF%= score-adjusted Fenwick percentage (differential of shot attempts faced vs. shot attempts, excluding blocked shots, adjusted for game score), PTS%= percentage of available points. Analysis: Games 1-20: Even with slightly above-average percentages, a strong start due to possession dominance. Games 21-41: Didnt control play quite as much, but incredible goaltending from Ben Scrivens and Martin Jones kept Kings rolling. Games 42-62: Aside from Carter and Kopitar, went through a team-wide scoring slump. Games 63-82: The addition of Marian Gaborik helped jumpstart the attack and, with sky-high percentages, the Kings finished strong. Key 2014 Additions: RW Adam Cracknell Key 2014 Subtractions: C Colin Fraser, D Willie Mitchell This Is Now: Just as they did after winning their first championship, the Kings concentrated on locking up key members of the team rather than making many changes to the roster. Acquired in midseason, Marian Gaborik was given a seven-year contract worth $34.125 million to ensure that he remains a member of a team once again trying to reach the summit of the league. His arrival from the Columbus Blue Jackets helped spark the teams offence in the same way that picking up Jeff Carter from the same team did in 2011-12. He led the league in playoff goals with 14 and played on a dynamic line with Kopitar who had 21 assists and 26 points during the post-season. Quick is one of the best goalies in the world, and posted a 27-17-4 record with a 2.07 goals against average in 49 games during the regular season. When the American Olympian was battling injuries earlier in the season, backup Martin Jones established himself as one of the best second options in the league with a 12-6-0 record and a 1.81 GAA in 19 games. Incredibly, in addition to a great offence and stellar goaltending, the Kings also boast Drew Doughty one of the best defencemen in the NHL. His skills are on display in both the offensive and defensive zones and he is supported by a strong group of blue liners down the depth chart. The Kings enter the season with capturing the Stanley Cup as their only goal, but also with the knowledge that the Blackhawks have reloaded and are ready if the teams lock horns in the playoffs for a third consecutive season. The Western Conference is tough to win but the road to that title and a place in the NHLs final could very well run through Tinseltown. DEPTH CHART Forwards Left Wing Centre Right Wing Marian Gaborik Anze Kopitar Justin Williams Tanner Pearson Jeff Carter Tyler Toffoli Dustin Brown Jarret Stoll Trevor Lewis Dwight King Mike Richards Jordan Nolan Kyle Clifford Jordan Weal Adam Cracknell Andy Andreoff Nick Shore David Van Der Gulik Defence Left Right Jake Muzzin Drew Doughty Robyn Regehr Slava Voynov Alec Martinez Matt Greene Jeff Schultz Brayden McNabb Derek Forbort Andrew Bodnarchuk Goaltenders Jonathan Quick Martin Jones Jean-Francois Berube Craigs List TSN Director of Scouting Craig Buttons Top Prospect: Valentin Zykov TSN Scout Craig Button on Valentin Zykov: Valentin has a game that is both skilled and heavy. Skilled in the scoring areas twenty-five feet in and around the net, he has the ability to score multiple ways. Quick to the net from below the goal line, an accurate shot from out and the ability to free his hands, makes him a very dangerous scorer. Hes heavy not in a punishing way but in the manner he becomes very difficult to push away from the net and in which he uses his size to gain advantageous positions to receive the puck. He is comfortable playing in a quick-paced game or a cycle game which allows him to be factor regardless of how game unfolds. Fantasy - Cullens Player to Watch - Tyler Toffoli Even after he was a contributor in the 2013 playoffs, the Kings were slow to give Toffoli a regular role last season, starting him in the AHL, where he scored 15 goals and 23 points in 18 games before getting recalled. His rookie season had ups and downs, but he finished with 29 points in 62 regular-season games, playing under 13 minutes per game. Then, in the postseason, Toffoli added 14 points in 26 games, making an impact on a line with Tanner Pearson and Jeff Carter. If that trio stays together this year, and he gets at least a few more minutes of ice time per game, then Toffoli a chance for breakthrough production. Dez Bryant Cowboys Jersey .C. -- Duke sophomore Rodney Hood is entering the NBA draft. Tyron Smith Jersey . - Novak Djokovic beat John Isner 7-5, 6-7 (2), 6-1 on Saturday to reach the final of the BNP Paribas Open, where hell resume his longtime rivalry with Roger Federer. . Heavily-criticized after allowing a dozen goals on 58 shots in two games in Boston, Luongo continued his dominance at home. Hes now allowed two goals in three home games in this series. Charles Haley Jersey . Bibeau, Torontos sixth-round pick at No. 172 overall in last years draft, was named the outstanding goaltender of the 2014 MasterCard Memorial Cup. Kyle Wilber Jersey . The Brewers finalized a US$36 million, three-year contract with free agent third baseman Aramis Ramirez on Wednesday, adding a much-needed bat to their lineup.The Buffalo Sabres dug into their past in a major front office shakeup on Wednesday, firing general manager Darcy Regier and head coach Ron Rolston and hiring former Sabre Pat LaFontaine as their new President of Hockey Operations and former Buffalo bench boss Ted Nolan as interim head coach. LaFontaine told reporters at his introductory news conference that he will be hiring the next general manager and already has a short list. LaFontaine played six seasons with the Sabres between 1991 and 1997 and was most recently a consultant with the NHL and with the New York Islanders. "Our job is top to bottom to bring a championship calibre team year to year," said LaFontaine. Nolan returns to the Sabres organization for the first time since his stint as head coach from 1995 to 1997. During the 1996-97 campaign, he led the Sabres to the Northeast Division title with a 40-30-12 record and won the Jack Adams Award as coach of the year. "Well compete, well make it exciting and well make it a place people want to come and enjoy hockey games again," Nolan said after being introduced. Regier, who receiveed a contract extension prior to last season, was in his 17th season as Sabres general manager.dddddddddddd. Under his watch, the Sabres reached the Eastern Conference final four times, most recently in 2007. Sabres owner Terry Pegula explained why Regier was not solely to blame for Buffalos most recent shortcomings. "He didnt do what he did by himself," Pegula said. "There was input from many people, prior owners, myself. Why now? I just decided and thats the only answer I can give you. We work together and sometimes you get to the point where a change was needed." The Sabres hired Rolston as their permanent head coach last spring after he served the interim position following the firing of Lindy Ruff in February. He led the Sabres to a 15-11-5 record after Ruff was fired Feb. 20 following a 6-10-1 performance. Before being selected interim coach, Rolston had coached the Rochester Americans, Buffalos AHL affiliate, since 2011. The Sabres finished 21-21-6 and missed the playoffs for a second straight year and fourth time in six seasons. They have a 4-15-1 record this season. Wholesale NFL Jerseys ' ' '
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