Now that there is a light lull in games for the All-Star Break, what is there to do, Kings fans? Win or Lose, I find myself glued to the tv for highlights, recaps, mentions, Kings Live, wretched 30 second ESPN coverage (if any), and, when not in front of the boob tube, it’s an all out online sports frenzy on gamedays. Even though the All Star Game is a delight to watch, really, it’s overall insignificance is prone to stifle hot teams while giving the worst one’s too much time to ingest fast food en route to see their families. It’s like a preview to summer.
So what do we focus on from now until Sunday’s (ASG), then, until Wednesday when the Kings look to hang up those Columbus Blue Jackets? Let’s lightly reflect on the first half and then look in to what always is a rough February.
The Los Angeles Kings go in to the All-Star Break 2 points out of the Pacific Division lead. Their inability to score in OT and get err done in Shootouts lands them 7th in the West with a record of 7-10 in OT/SO. We can all remember last year’s success, largely contributed to Jarret Stoll’s performance. He scored on 9 of 10.
This year in OT/SO situations the Kings have missed out on 10 possible extra points. Realistically, I understand you can’t win them all, but cut those in half, we are competitively leading the Pacific Division over the SHARTS from the North. The Kings have also put up a couple of goose eggs against teams at the bottom of the League. If the Kings won two (Columbus and Edmonton) again,, they would be comfortably seated at their rightful throne at the top of the league provided they scored three goals; as proposed by Darryl Sutter’s 3-2 league theory.
Wish all I want there is one thing certain; there are 32 more games to be played. The month of February has 14 games in twenty-nine days, including four back-to-back situations on the road.. There are four home games and, lets face it, the Kings are 14-11-4 at home and that needs to change in order to contend. They have a ridiculous schedule that they need to work to be accustomed to. They fly from Long Island after a 10am game start to a game in Dallas the following day with a 3pm start. I understand athletes train for situations like these but what a ridiculous schedule ending in a ridiculous city with a team of goons and unsportsmanlike conduct.
There is no doubt that the Kings are capable. A huge home reception, the following game, would be in order from the hometown faithful.
Kings fans are the most underrated fans in the league with so much passion congesting the streets. It’s always traffic hour in the Stape because the fans want to will their team to victory. There is no doubt in my mind that the Kings have enough pride and camaraderie in the locker room thanks to Inside the Locker Room: Parts 1-4, Justin Williams’ post game quotes on Jon Quick, and much more, but it’s the efforts on the ice that I hope consistently click.
That said, we want to see the team that showed up during the 4-1 routings of Vancouver and Ottawa, 5-2 of Washington and the defense that supported our All Star goaltender, Jonathan Quick to 3 consecutive shutouts.
I know it’s a tall order and so what if we land at 7th seed at the end of the season. When a city and a team want a championship, there is a common denominator found in the standings and fan attendance. It doesn’t matter where you are seated; it’s affect and intensity you have when you show up to a game.