June 6, 2013; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Kings left wing Dustin Penner (25) celebrates with center Jeff Carter (77) and center Tyler Toffoli (73) after scoring a goal against the Chicago Blackhawks during the second period in game four of the Western Conference finals of the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Predicting The Pacific: Los Angeles Kings

Predicting The Pacific is a week-long event where we will look at a different team each day of the week and take a guess at where they will be amongst the rest of the Pacific Division come the end of next season. Here we go.

Alright everybody let’s try not to be too biased with this one.

It’s  the Kings turn, and I am as big a Kings fan as the rest but let’s take this slow and actually think how the Kings will perform next season. As much as I hate them, the Canucks, Sharks and Ducks are all very talented teams and can run away with the division if they get on a run. So let’s look at our beloved Kings.

First off, the obvious. The Kings have a boat load of talent and boast a roster that features Jeff Carter, Mike Richards, Anze Kopitar, Dustin Brown and Jonathan Quick. That alone is a good enough group of players to make any team a contender.

When you jump to the blue line, the Kings have some of the strongest defensemen in the league. A group of players anchored by young star Drew Doughty, includes budding star, Slava Voynov and big bodies like Matt Greene and Robyn Regehr. The Kings’ defense did take a hit over the summer with the loss of Rob Scuderi to free agency, but if Willie Mitchell can come back at 100 percent and stay healthy that loss may not be as influential as it can be.

An interesting storyline to watch this season will be the development of youngster, Tyler Toffoli. He got his feet wet and played in ten games last season where he scored two goals and recorded five points. Toffoli could get top six minutes next season, so it will be interesting to see how he performs and how productive he can be with the big boys.

Outside of the locks for a roster spot, the Kings will have several position battles that will be settled during training camp. How will Matt Fratin fit into the equation? Which defenseman will be left on the outside looking in?  It is definitely looking like a royal rumble atmosphere moving towards training camp.

Now it’s time to vote. Can the Kings continue their recent dominance and get back to the Western Conference Final for a third consecutive year? Will they win the Pacific Division? Can they stay healthy? All are questions that will be answered over time, but for now where will the Kings finish in the Pacific Division?

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What Place Will The Los Angeles Kings Finish In The Pacific Division?

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Tags: Anze Kopitar Drew Doughty Los Angeles Kings

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