LA Kings: Three things to watch in Golden Knights series (preview)

LA Kings (Mandatory Credit: Isaac Brekken/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports)
LA Kings (Mandatory Credit: Isaac Brekken/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports) /

The LA Kings and Vegas Golden Knights open a two-game series on Monday night. Here are three things to watch for throughout the series.

The LA Kings have had a few days to rest, gather themselves, and prepare for an important stretch in their 2021 season. As we noted, the next six games could ultimately decide their fate. Todd McLellan’s group is 1-3 against the Golden Knights this season, but they played arguably one of their best games of the season in a victory back on March 21.

The Kings dominated a Max Pacioretty-less Knights team en route to a 3-1 final score. The Golden Knights are 13-2-1 at T-Mobile Arena this season, and here are three things to monitor throughout the series.

We will also be expanding off these in Monday night’s Hockey Royalty Podcast.

1. Look for Alex Tuch to make some noise

  • Alex Tuch on pace to set a career-high in goals (13 in 31 GP, 20 in 74 in 18-19 season)
  • Kings are the only team in the West Division he has yet to record a goal against
  • Relatively quiet since March 13, recording just one goal and an assist in 7 games
  • Historically, he’s played well against the Kings, 3 goals and 7 points in 15 games

2. LA Kings’ powerplay needs to score in this series

  • In four previous meetings, Kings have been outscored 14-10
  • 2-for-9 on the powerplay against VGK this year, both from Dustin Brown
  • Kings went 0-for-7 on the PP in the Sharks series
  • Kings still 9th in the league with a 24.3 PP%
  • Vegas’ 84.3% PK ranks sixth-best in the NHL

3. Can Kings slow Max Pacioretty?

  • The only game the Kings won, Pacioretty was out with an injury
  • Pacioretty has two goals and four assists in three games against LA this season
  • He has goals in four of his last five game overall
  • Aside from starting fast, limiting Pacioretty’s damage is priority number 1

Puck drop is set for 7 pm PT.

Make sure to tune into Ep 11 of Monday night’s podcast. As previously noted up top, we’ll be diving into these topics further. Please subscribe and give us a five-star rating. We’d really appreciate it. Thanks!