Thursday, November 3, 2011

Kings Gameday: The Oil are in Town

Fact: I've never liked the Edmonton Oilers.

I'll save my hate-fueled rant about the Oilers for another day.

Apparently the Edmonton Oilers have a couple of young sprightly talented hockey players.  You can follow their lives on Twitter: Taylor Hall & Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.  Both of these kids referred to California as "Cali".  I hate them already.

There's an article about RNH and his start in the NHL and comparisons to his days in Juniors.  It's all very inspiring and heartwarming, but the part that made my eyes bug out was the description of Edmonton having "the best goaltending in the NHL".  Guhhhh-WHAT?! Impossible! (say it in a French accent for a better effect.) Since when does Edmonton have the best goaltending?  I didn't trust the writer so I checked the NHL stats and sure enough our beloved Jonathan Quick has been bested in GAA and SV% by one goaltender: Nikolai Khabibulin.  Is anyone else shocked by this?  He goes from Tent City to top of the NHL in a matter of months.  That is crazy talk.  Also, this doesn't bode well for the scoring-challenged LA Kings.

I'm a bit frustrated, or maybe it's jealousy that's talking, to see Ryan Smyth with 10 points (5G, 5A) in 11 games.  You have got to be kidding me.  The guy had 7 points last season (3G, 4A) in 11 games and based on his play during the rest of the season, I figured his stats would continue to fall in the following season.  It pains me to see him doing this well considering there are some Kings who haven't yet contributed very many points.

LA Kings Insider reported on Wednesday that Simon Gagne will be back in the lineup, which means I can now restart my 'Anze for MVP' campaign. Anze has been most effective this season when Gagne is playing alongside him.  I expect at least 3 points from Anze tonight. Totally doable!

Things to watch for tonight:

  • 5-on-5: will the Kings be able to dominate at even strength?
  • Stupid penalties: Green has been good lately about staying out of the box, but now Parse is having trouble avoiding taking unnecessary penalties.  
  • Turnovers: Recently the Kings have been shooting themselves in the skates by turning over the puck way too many times
  • Penner vs. the Young Guns: Who will garner the most attention and will it be positive or negative?

I hope the Kings get out of their funk tonight.

Go Anze Go!

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