There’s one more game left in the Los Angeles Kings’ eight-game homestand, but even if they bludgeon the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday night, it’s still safe to say that it’s been a disastrous span of games for the playoff hopefuls.
Assuming they beat the Oilers – which isn’t a small assumption, based on the Kings’ recent play and the way Edmonton beat the San Jose Sharks last night – Los Angeles will only pull four out of a possible 16 points out of that trip. In those first seven games, the Kings are a pitiful 1-6-0.
Let’s take a stats-based look at their seven games of struggles in an attempt to identify trends in that set of games. If nothing else, this could prove entertaining fodder for people who dislike the Kings. (The heaviest populations, one would assume, reside in Anaheim, San Jose, Dallas, Phoenix … and Toronto because many Maple Leafs fans haven’t let the Gretzky high stick on Gilmour go.)
Note: there might be some “big picture” stats, too.
- They’ve been outscored 18-27 in that seven game span, which actually isn’t that bad considering the fact that they lost six times (all in regulation) in that frame. They’re not getting blown out regularly, at least.
- Then again, they hold a league-low in charity points with only one overtime/shootout loss, so it seems like they either win in regulation or overtime or don’t get a point at all.
- The Kings have allowed a stunning 4.5 goals per game in that span while averaging 3 goals of their own.
- Jonathan Quick is the only Kings goalie with a win in this span (1-4) while Jonathan Bernier went 0-2. Quick allowed 15 goals in five games while Bernier was even worse, allowing 12 in only two.
- Ryan Smyth has been one of the team’s best players in the span, with five goals and three assists for eight points. Jack Johnson has also been strong, with one goal and six assists for seven points. Meanwhile, Anze Kopitar has five assists and Drew Doughty has four assists.
So, what’s next for the Kings? Here’s a look at their biggest remaining stretches of home and away games.
Biggest home stretches: A six-game stretch from February 24-March 5th and a five-game stretch from March 17-26th.
Biggest road stretches: 10 consecutive road games from February 1-19th and a four-game stretch from March 9-15th.
Overall, the Kings have 18 games at home and 21 games remaining on the road. Things certainly look rough for Los Angeles, but ultimately, it all comes down to the Kings surviving that crazy stretch in February. It should be interesting to watch.
He turns 32 in August, and he’s got three years left on his contract with a sizable cap hit of $4.5 million.
He didn’t have a great playoffs either.
So we shouldn’t be too surprised to read that the Calgary Flames are “likely” to leave winger Troy Brouwer unprotected in the expansion draft.
From the Calgary Herald:
The acquisition of Curtis Lazar at the trade deadline for a second round pick came with a public assurance from GM Brad Treliving that Lazar was a reclamation project he planned to protect.
Thus, the list of seven forwards protected will likely include Johnny Gaudreau, Sean Monahan, Mikael Backlund, Michael Frolik, Micheal Ferland, Sam Bennett and Lazar. First and second-year players like Matthew Tkachuk are exempt.
Brouwer had just 13 goals in 74 games for the Flames this season. He signed in Calgary on July 1, leaving the St. Louis Blues as an unrestricted free agent.
As the Herald notes, there’s no guarantee that Vegas will select him. But certainly, his old general manager from their days together in Washington, George McPhee, will give it some consideration.
McPhee gave Brouwer a three-year extension in 2012, calling him “a physical and versatile power forward who can play both wings. … He is a Stanley Cup winner and a great leader.”
By all accounts, Tyler Seguin and new head coach Ken Hitchcock can’t wait to start working together in Dallas.
But now, they’ll have to.
On Wednesday, Stars GM Jim Nill announced Seguin had undergone shoulder surgery to repair a torn labrum, per the Morning-News.
The Stars announced the procedure is followed by a four-month recovery period. Nill said that Seguin is expected to be healthy and ready for September’s training camp.
It’s a bit surprising to learn the 25-year-old had an injury of this significance. Seguin didn’t miss a single contest last year, marking the first time in his career he played a full 82-game campaign.
Related: Hitch wants Seguin thinking, playing like a No. 1 center
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) No goaltender has played better this postseason than Pekka Rinne of the Nashville Predators, though Jake Allen of the St. Louis Blues came closest in the first round.
Now their teammates have to figure out how to score on these two stingy goalies if they want to advance to the Western Conference finals. (Watch tonight at 8 pm ET on NBCSN or the NBC Sports app)
“We have to try to solve Jake Allen and make life difficult for him,” Rinne said . “It comes down to me trying to maintain and try to be at my best. At the same time, of course, you’re going to look at the other side of the rink and the guy who you play against, you try to outplay him.”
Rinne allowed only three goals on 126 shots faced in helping Nashville to its first postseason sweep in franchise history. He shut out top-seeded Chicago twice on the Blackhawks’ own ice, becoming just the fourth goalie to win four postseason games with a goals-against average of 0.70 or less.
Related: Five impressive stats from the first round
When the Blues open their conference semifinal Wednesday night in St. Louis, they hope to take advantage of some inside information to solve Rinne. Carter Hutton backed up Rinne the past three seasons in Nashville, and the two remain close friends. That friendship is about to take a timeout for the duration of this series.
“He’s one of those guys that he’s a streaky goalie at the same time, so I think we have to do a good job of getting traffic and getting in there,” Hutton said. “But it’s going to be a battle of the goalies. We’ve got two of the best going at it here.”
Allen ranks just behind Rinne this postseason with a 1.47 goals-against average and .956 save percentage in leading the Blues over Minnesota in five games in the first round.
“He’s been our playoff MVP so far,” Hutton said of Allen.
Read more: A remarkable turnaround for Jake Allen
There was a changing of the guard in Montreal on Wednesday, as veteran assistant bench boss Clement Jodoin resigned from the club.
“Marc Bergevin and I regretfully accepted the resignation of assistant coach Clement Jodoin, who made the decision to end his long-time association with the Montreal Canadiens,” head coach Claude Julien said in a release. “At our post-season meeting, we offered Clement to remain on our coaching staff, but he indicated to us that at this stage in his career, he would be looking for a change and would like to explore other challenges.”
Jodoin, 65, first caught on with the Canadiens in 1997 as an assistant under then-head coach Alain Vigneault. He spent six years with the club until returning to coach junior hockey in the Quebec League.
In 2011, he returned to the Habs organization as the head coach of their AHL affiliate in Hamilton. One year later, he was back in the bigs in a familiar role — as Montreal’s assistant coach, working alongside Michel Therrien.
Montreal had no immediate word on who will replace Jodoin on Julien’s staff.