There might be “lies, damn lies and statistics,” but sometimes the numbers don’t lie. After Ryan Smyth suffered his upper-body injury, the Kings went 6-for-49 on the power play in their 15 games without Smyth. In the seven games since Smyth’s return, the Kings are 8-for-26 on the power play, and Smyth has four of those goals.

So while Terry Murray has said, of late, that he doesn’t attribute too much of the power-play success to any one person, it’s clear that Smyth’s impact is huge, particularly with the way Smyth parks himself in front of the net for tip-ins and rebounds. Here’s what Murray said today about Smyth’s impact on the power play, followed by Smyth’s thoughts…

MURRAY: “I think he contributes in several different areas on the power play. His composure with the puck. He can handle the 1-on-1 battles down low, to absorb some punishment and still have the composure to make some plays. Certainly his net presence is a big part of the reason he’s out there. He’s got hand-eye coordination that’s second to none in the league, in my opinion, and that doesn’t come naturally. He worked very hard at it, throughout his whole career. Then just the experience of being in that situation many times. He reads, he reacts, he gets into position to give outs, little give-and-go plays. He knows when support is needed, when another player is under stress. So he’s a very valuable player, and he comes through for us most times.”

Here’s what Smyth said today, when asked about the power play’s recent success…

Question: In your mind, what has been the cause of their recent success on the power play?

SMYTH: “I think the big thing is, we’re moving around crisply, we’re getting pucks to the point and we’re getting shots. When you get shots, you establish that, and you’re going to be able to make different plays, because it opens up a lot more. We’re hounding the puck when we get in there, and we’re retrieving pucks, which is so important to start a power play. Obviously, winning faceoffs is a key, then retrieving it and getting shots. We’re doing all of that, together, as a unit.”

Question: Some penalty-kill units are more aggressive than others. Do you adjust your style to how aggressive the penalty kill is, or do you just try to dictate things with the way you play?

SMYTH: “With the technology nowadays, with the video and stuff, the coaches have it layed out for us, a good game plan for what we can do better against certain teams. I believe that in any special-teams play, you’ve got to dictate it. You have to dictate the pace yourself, as a unit, and you’re going to get more chances that way. Even if you don’t score, you’re going to get momentum off of that for the other guys too.”

Question: Most of your power-play goals are scored from short range. Handzus plays a similar role on the power play. Having someone in front like that, how important is it to a power play?

SMYTH: “Obviously, I have established that for a long time, and I know Zeus is in on that too. I think it’s important to know that that’s where the puck usually ends up, so if you want to score, you have to get the puck to the net but you also have to be there and work for the rebounds and tips. For the most part, I think the key is moving around, and then getting shots.”

Rules for Blog Commenting
  • - No profanity, slurs or other offensive language. Replacing letters with symbols does not turn expletives into non-expletives.
  • - Personal attacks against other blog commenters, and/or blatant attempts to antagonize other commenters, are not tolerated. Respectful disagreement is encouraged. Posts that continually express the same singular opinion will be deleted.
  • - Comments that incite political, religious or similar debates will be deleted.
  • - Please do not discuss, or post links to, websites that illegally stream NHL games.
  • - Posting under multiple user names is not allowed. Do not type in all caps. All violations are subject to comment deletion and/or banning of commenters, per the discretion of the blog administrator.
Alec martinez

#27 | 6′ 1″ | 210 lb | Age: 29

Born: July 26, 1987
Birthplace: Rochester Hills, MI, USA
Position: D
Handedness: Left

Bio

Bio: Martinez was drafted by the LA Kings in the 2007 Draft, while playing for Miami University. He has since become a two-time Stanley Cup champion and the 17th man in Stanley Cup playoff history to score the Cup-winning goal in overtime.

VIEW ALEC MARTINEZ POSTS
Anze Kopitar

#11 | 6′ 3″ | 224 lb | Age: 29

Born: August 24, 1987
Birthplace: Jesenice, SVN
Position: C
Handedness: Left

Bio

As the 11th overall pick in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, Kopitar became the first Slovenian to play in the NHL. Kopitar has spent his entire NHL career with the Kings, and following the 2015–16 season, was named the Kings’ captain. Noted for both his offensive and defensive play, Kopitar was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the best defensive forward in the NHL in 2016.

VIEW ANZE KOPITAR POSTS
Drew Doughty

#8 | 6′ 1″ | 195 lb | Age: 26

Born: December 8, 1989
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Right

Bio

Bio: Doughty is a Canadian defenceman who was selected second overall by the Kings in the 2008 Draft. Doughty made his NHL debut in 2008 as an 18-year-old and was named to the All-Rookie Team. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Kings, a two-time Olympic gold medallist with the Canadian national team, and a Norris Trophy finalist.

VIEW DREW DOUGHTY POSTS
Tyler Toffoli

#73 | 6′ 1″ | 200 lb | Age: 24

Born: April 24, 1992
Birthplace: Scarborough, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right

Bio

Toffoli is a Canadian professional ice hockey forward, drafted by the Kings in the second round of the 2010 Draft. Toffoli scored his first career NHL goal in his second game in a 4–0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes in 2013. He was also named the 2012–13 AHL All-Rookie Team.
VIEW TYLER TOFFOLI POSTS

Jeff Carter

#77 | 6′ 4″ | 215 lb | Age: 31

Born: January 1, 1985
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right

Bio

Carter began his hockey career playing in the Ontario Hockey League in Canada before joining the AHL and playing for the Philadelphia Flyers. He was then traded to the Colombus Blue jackets before joining the LA Kings in 2012, where he has since won two Stanley Cups with the Kings.

VIEW JEFF CARTER POSTS
Jonathan Quick

#32 | 6′ 1″ | 218 lb | Age: 30

Born: January 21, 1986
Birthplace: Milford, CT, USA
Position: G
Handedness: Left

Bio

Bio: Quick is the current goaltender for the LA Kings and was selected by Los Angeles at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. Previously, Quick was a silver medalist with USA at the 2010 Winter Olympics. He’s won two Stanley Cup championships with the Kings, along with being the most recent goaltender to be awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs.

VIEW JONATHAN QUICK POSTS