Waking up with the Kings: April 22 - LA Kings Insider

-The Los Angeles Kings took a circuitous route to a hard-earned and deserved victory over the Dallas Stars while benefitting from the cross-conference benevolence of the Columbus Blue Jackets, Colorado Avalanche and the Calgary Flames. By virtue of how the chips fell Sunday evening, the Kings assured themselves of no worse than a sixth place finish, while their chances of securing the fourth seed and home ice advantage in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs increased to 82.0%, according to SportsClubStats.com.

-The officiating. The win quieted what would otherwise have been a hot-blooded topic following the game, as Ryan Garbutt set up Antoine Roussel’s game-tying goal in the second period by leaping and playing the puck with a blatant high-stick. Early in the third period, an apparent Kings goal was disallowed before Alex Goligoski scored at the other end of the ice shortly following the reset. You are probably well aware of these plays. On the former, the officials simply missed the high-stick. Because it occurred on the play leading up to the goal and not the goal itself, it was not a reviewable play by video evidence. Regarding the latter, Aaron Rome simply misread his position on the ice while turning towards his net and crashed into Kari Lehtonen without any assistance from Trevor Lewis. As Dustin Brown noted after the game, it was a judgment call by referee Mike Hasenfratz, and it went against LA. On the go-ahead goal by Goligoski 33 seconds after play resumed, Quick wasn’t able to recover after moving outside his crease to challenge Reilly Smith, who had slipped behind Rob Scuderi.

-Brown’s equalizer that came 2:16 after Goligoski’s goal is the exact type of power play goal the team is looking for and an example of the team’s spirited man advantage, which now has goals in eight straight games. Every skater on the Kings was able to touch the puck within five seconds (see below). The goal was a result of crisp puck movement, a quality opportunity from a wide-open Jeff Carter in the high slot, and Brown well-positioned to capitalize on a rebound.

-This isn’t exactly breaking news, but Anze Kopitar’s puck possession skills appear to be as good as those of any player in the NHL. One player who comes to mind when watching Kopitar protect the puck in the offensive zone is Jaromir Jagr, who I was grateful to have been able to watch in the Pacific Division for half a season. Both are aided by their size, width and balance; you rarely see either player weather a heavy hit from the opposition.

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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.

Anze Kopitar

#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

#8 | 6′ 1″ | 195 lb | Age: 26

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

#73 | 6′ 1″ | 200 lb | Age: 24

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.

Jeff Carter

#77 | 6′ 4″ | 215 lb | Age: 31

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


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.

Jonathan Quick

#32 | 6′ 1″ | 218 lb | Age: 30

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


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.