The Los Angeles Kings’ poor starts this season finally came back to bite them in the ass. In the majority of games this season the Kings have allowed their opponents to score the first goal, and this time they were unable to recover sufficiently to earn a point. It was the first game the Kings played against a fellow Pacific Division team, and the Kings just didn’t show up to play.
Of course the fact that Doughty was out (and didn’t even make the trip) didn’t help, as the Kings defense seemed scattered for the majority of the night. The calming effect of Doughty was clearly absent as several of the defensemen, especially the younger ones (Muzzin, Drewiske) seemed uncomfortable at times and were clearly overwhelmed by some intense pressure by Phoenix forwards.
Maybe the most disturbing of the statistics for the game was that the Kings power play continued to struggle, giving up ANOTHER short-handed goal. Let’s get this straight. The Kings power play has ALLOWED more goals than it has scored. Seriously. Statistically, the Kings are more likely to give up a goal, than score one. Damn that’s awful. It’s truly terrible, and something that they will need to rectify in short order if they want to continue a relatively strong start to the season.
So any positive notes from this game? Well, the penalty kill was strong again. Just how strong? Well opposing teams this season have scored as many times when the KINGS were on a power play, as when they were on a power play themselves… yea, I can’t get over how bad the power play has been… But our shorthanded play has been strong, that’s good. That’s about the only positive note for the game.
Am I being overly negative? What else was there to take from this game?
Three Stars of the Game:
1st: Lee Stempniak
2nd: Ilya Bryzgalov
3rd: Ed Jovanovski