There are many sayings that highlight the idea of home and all that comes along with home. “Home sweet home” or “Home is where the heart is” are some of the many sayings thrown around on a regular basis. In the case of the Los Angeles Kings these sayings are very accurate, except for maybe the second saying, which could be morphed into something along the lines of “Home is where the wins are”.
That is just what the Kings do when at home, they win. They are currently 8-0 during the playoffs and are riding a 15-game winning streak, dating back to the regular season, when playing at Staples Center. The last time the Kings lost when at home was over two months ago, on March 23rd, when they were shutout 1-0 by the Vancouver Canucks.
There must be something going on with the Kings’ home cooking because they have not only won these games but have dominated in most of them. The Kings have gone 14 of the 15 games without allowing their opponents to score in the first period, and have outscored their opponents 15-2 in the opening frame as well.
Outside of this current winning streak the Kings were dominant when at home all season long, going 27-4-1, both regular and post season, at home. When the Kings score first at home they have been virtually unbeatable, going 22-0 all season when getting on the board first when at home. Thats a win percentage of almost 69 percent when scoring first at home.
Contributing to the team’s dominance on home ice has been their defensive play. In the 32 games played at Staples Center this year, opponents have scored 2 or less goals in 26 of those games.
When on home ice, the Kings have often looked like a different team then the group of guys that has gone 1-7 when on the road this post season. Which is good, because there have been points where things looked down right awful.
The Kings will have to continue this dominance if they want a shot at getting past Chicago and into the Stanley Cup Finals for the second consecutive year. We all remember how important home games where last series, when the home team went 7-0 and the Kings advanced because of that oh so important home ice advantage.
The Kings already have to steal one when in Chicago, if they stumble during a home game and push that number from 1 to 2, they will have put themselves between rock and a hard place. They have done it once already, lost the opening two games of a series on the road, came home won the next 2 games and then grabbed a game in St. Louis before advancing to the next round on home ice in game 6.
Will the Kings even the series up, on home ice, before heading back to Chicago for game 5? Let’s hope so.