Can the Kings avoid another slide? - LA Kings Insider

The last time the Kings’ play dipped, things snowballed quickly. The Kings’ 6-3 loss at San Jose on Nov. 15 was a proverbial punch in the nose, and it essentially took the Kings two weeks to recover, as that loss started a 1-7-0 skid. In some ways, Wednesday’s 6-3 loss at Phoenix had much the same feel as that San Jose game, and the Kings’ challenge now is to prevent another such slide from taking place, particularly with seven consecutive home games to come. It starts tomorrow night against San Jose, and I asked Michal Handzus today about the team’s awareness about not letting things slide again…

HANDZUS: “We have a big homestand, and I think it’s a really critical point of our season. We’ve got to get as many points on the board as we can. So we can’t let a slide happen, and we’ve got to really focus. We’ve got good teams coming in. We’ve been playing pretty good at home, so we’ve just got to refocus. It goes to basics. We’ve got to do the little things well. Sometimes we try to do too much, and one guy is trying to do the other guy’s job, and that’s when breakdowns happen. We have to have more trust, especially in our own zone.

“The whole team, we know what we have to do. We’ve done it, pretty much, for the last three years, so we’ve just to refocus a little bit and just get back to basics. We’ve got to be stronger along the boards, win the battles and be stronger on the puck. Sometimes we give them, in our zone, too much space, and they start cycling and we’re just kind of running around. So we’ve got to close down harder, play harder and just go back to basics. We know how we have to play.”

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Adrian Kempe

#9 | 6′ 2″ | 195 lb | Age: 21

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


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

Alex Iafallo

#19 | 6′ | 185 lb | Age: 23

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


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

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.

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.