Waking up with the Kings: February 28 - LA Kings Insider

Forecheck, forecheck, forecheck. It comes hot and heavy – especially on the road – when playing Pacific Division foes Anaheim and San Jose, and for periods of Friday night’s 4-2 Ducks win, the Kings had real struggles adapting to it and exiting their zone. They weathered it admirably early, though for the first seven or eight minutes of the game it provided a major barrier to L.A.’s intent to advance the puck as a unified group. The numbers showed how continuous the forecheck was; the Ducks totaled 52 hits, 38 of which were administered by forwards.

Los Angeles Kings v Anaheim Ducks

After handling Anaheim’s forecheck for the first half of the first period without allowing a goal against, Los Angeles etched out its most sustained pressure of the night over the remainder of the opening 20 minutes. Trevor Lewis opened the scoring during an outstanding individual effort as he shook off a Francois Beauchemin hip check before cutting to the center of the ice above the crease and beating John Gibson down low. That pressure did not carry into the second period as Anaheim again suffocated the Kings with heavy pressure, leading to an Andrej Sekera shift of over three minutes as the visitors struggled to leave their own zone and forced an icing in which they couldn’t change up their personnel. When Los Angeles eventually doubled its lead, they did so opportunistically and against the run of play as Brayden McNabb scored his first goal as a King on a wristshot from 57 feet that banked off Hampus Lindholm’s leg and in on the team’s first shot on goal of the period. While L.A. led 2-0 at that point, the overall chances slightly favored Anaheim in a game in which Martin Jones was excellent for 40 minutes. Credit Lindholm for closing in on Justin Williams’ partial and contested late second period breakaway while denying a Grade-A chance with Gibson out of position by channeling wide a shot attempt towards a mostly open net.

Los Angeles Kings v Anaheim Ducks

Andrej Sekera logged 21:32 of ice time in his first game as a King, though the total was inflated due to the extended shift in his own zone during the second period. There’s nothing to read into at this point, and a greater sense of what he’ll mean to this Kings team will come after multiple practices and a handful of games with his new teammates. Having switched back to the right side as a left-shooting defenseman, he abruptly had to change his reads and the shoulder he needed to look over when receiving the puck, and those fundamentals will all return to the mobile defenseman quickly. He showed good instincts with the puck in the offensive zone and should eventually help a Los Angeles power play that’s 2-for-26 over its last 10 games (though it looked terrific in the win over Detroit on Tuesday).

Los Angeles Kings v Anaheim Ducks

No rest for the weary: The Kings report to practice at 10:00 a.m. today, an hour earlier than usual on mornings after games. They’ll travel to Winnipeg to face a heavy Jets team for a mid-afternoon Sunday affair to complete a compacted four-games-in-five-and-a-half-days stretch, so a real gut-check lays ahead.

Los Angeles Kings v Anaheim Ducks

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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

Bio

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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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.

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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.

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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.
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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.

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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.

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