More goals needed from Kopitar - LA Kings Insider

With a 5-0-1 record in their last six games, the Kings appear to be back on the upswing, but they’ve been winning without much production from top scorer Anze Kopitar. Kopitar still leads the team with 50 points in 53 games, but he has gone nine consecutive games without a goal and has only one goal in his last 19 games. Kopitar does have 14 assists during those 19 games, but the Kings want to see more goal production. Kopitar had more goals (two) in the All-Star Game alone than he has had for the Kings, total, since late December. The work ethic is still there, but the goals aren’t, and today Terry Murray talked about what Kopitar needs to do in order to start scoring goals.

MURRAY: “I wish I had the one answer that could turn it around. You just have to work your way out of it. Just about every player that has played sports, you’re going to go through a hard time. There is no magic. It’s just getting back to the hard work, the fundamentals. The most important thing, especially on the offensive part of the game, from a player that you’re looking for goal production from, you have a tendency as a player to get away from things. You think you have to find space, that you have to get open, that you have to get to a nice, quiet area out there, so that you’re available for somebody to get you the puck. That’s what you think, but that’s the wrong thing. You’ve got to go where it’s really hard, really nasty and dirty, and you’re looking for one to get off your backside or your stick, just a loose puck or a rebound. That’s the ice-breaker sometimes. Then it clicks, and away you go.”

Only twice in the last 10 games has Kopitar led the Kings in shots on goal — or been tied for the team lead — although he does lead the team in shots on goal for the season, with 174. Murray was asked today whether Kopitar needs to be more “selfish,” in a positive sense, in terms of shooting the puck more.

MURRAY: “I would love that. I think, you always find over the history of the game that the guys who are big goal scorers, they always tend to shoot before passing. As long as the puck is going in, that’s OK. I watched a game yesterday with Tampa Bay, and (Steven) Stamkos has 40 (goals) already. There’s no doubt what he’s going to do. Everybody knows where it’s coming from, and he obliges. He’s shooting every time. And that’s OK. I’d like to see that a little bit more, from maybe all of us in our group. Have more of a shooter mentality than passing, than a passing option.”

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Jake Muzzin

#6 | 6′ 3″ | 216 lb | Age: 27

Born: Feb 21, 1989
Birthplace: Woodstock, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Left


Muzzin was drafted in 2007 by the Pittsburgh Penguins, before signing to the Kings in 2010. He has since become the first Woodstock, Ontario professional athlete to win a major sports trophy.

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#11 | 6′ 3″ | 224 lb | Age: 29

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


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.

Drew Doughty

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


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.

Tyler Toffoli

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


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.

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


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Born: January 21, 1986
Birthplace: Milford, CT, USA
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