It begins... - LA Kings Insider

Good morning from the skies over the Western United States, Insiders. ICYMI, the Kings play their next nine games on the road. This span includes two separate road trips: one seven-game trip (Buffalo, Detroit, Pittsburgh, Boston, Columbus, Nashville, Dallas), followed by the NHL’s Christmas Break, and then a quick two-game trip (Vancouver, Edmonton) before the team returns home to face San Jose on New Year’s Eve.

While Los Angeles played 10 consecutive road games in 2010-11 – a Northwest Division jaunt to Minnesota, Edmonton and Calgary, a return home for three days, a six-game trip in the Eastern Conference and then a road game at Anaheim – the longest uninterrupted road trip in franchise history is nine games, set in 1969-70. The Kings finished 1-7-1 on that late fall trip through Pittsburgh, Boston, Toronto, Philadelphia, Minnesota, Chicago, Detroit, St. Louis and Oakland, and ultimately tallied just 38 points on the season, going 14-52-10.

This will be the 15th seven-game trip in franchise history and only the second since the 2011-12 season. Last year, Los Angeles was 3-3-1 on the trip that began with a 9-2 win at Boston and ended with a 2-1, Anze Kopitar-less overtime win in Nashville. In seven-game trips, the Kings have finished with a better-than-.500 points percentage four times, an even .500 points percentage twice, and a points percentage worse than .500 eight times.

Personnel changes across the league from year to year, but the Kings will be visiting several buildings in which they have historically not fared well. The most prime examples would be Buffalo’s arena, now called the KeyBank Center, where the team has not won since the 2002-03 season, and Boston’s TD Garden, located in a city in which the team is 16-47-6 all-time. Los Angeles will also make its final regular season visit to Joe Louis Arena in advance of the opening of Little Caesars Arena in Downtown Detroit next season. I’ll speak with the Michigan contingent on the roster in advance of the team’s final visit to one of the most historic venues in the hockey history.

KeyBank Center
All-time record vs Sabres: 43-56-18-2 (W-L-T-OT)
All-time record in Buffalo: 16-32-9-2

Joe Louis Arena
All-time record vs Red Wings: 83-81-27-5
All-time record in Detroit: 34-47-13-4

PPG Paints Arena
All-time record vs Penguins: 73-59-18-4
All-time record in Pittsburgh: 27-41-10-1

TD Garden
All-time record vs Bruins: 42-81-13-1
All-time record in Boston: 16-47-6-0

Nationwide Arena
All-time record vs Blue Jackets: 30-19-1-3
All-time record in Columbus: 13-10-0-3

Bridgestone Arena
All-time record vs Predators:31-25-3-5
All-time record in Nashville: 16-11-3-2

American Airlines Center
All-time record vs North Stars/Stars: 86-102-32-8
All-time record in Minnesota/Dallas: 35-61-13-5

There wasn’t much on-ice business to report this morning. The team did not practice before boarding the plane, though Brayden McNabb did skate at Toyota Sports Center with Assistant General Manager Rob Blake. He is not expected to travel with the team at the outset of the trip.

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Adrian Kempe

#9 | 6′ 2″ | 195 lb | Age: 21

Born: September 13, 1996
Birthplace: Kramfors, SWE
Position: LW
Handedness: Left

Bio

Kempe was selected by the Kings in the first round (29th overall) in the 2014 NHL Draft.
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Alex Iafallo

#19 | 6′ | 185 lb | Age: 23

Born: December 21, 1993
Birthplace: Eden, NY, USA
Position: C
Handedness: Left

Bio

Iafallo was signed by the Kings as an unrestricted free agent on April 18, 2017.
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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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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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