Waking up with the Kings: January 20 - LA Kings Insider

On the verge of moves that would reshape the roster and subtract contributing players from the greatest era in franchise history, the image of Jonathan Quick swinging his stick at the goalpost and shouting at referee Jean Hebert after an unsuccessful challenge during a six-goal loss served as a sad representation of the depths to which such a proud and accomplished group has fallen this season. Good on Quick for showing that kind of emotion, and ditto for Dion Phaneuf. There is an issue with this team’s sustained emotional involvement, but try telling that to Alec Martinez, who blocked two shots on a five-on-three when the game was 7-1. Jake Muzzin blocked four shots in this game, one that forced him into the X-ray room. Jack Campbell offered his customary stick taps to his defensemen’s backsides. Nothing else went right in this game, one in which Jonathan Quick kept from getting out of hand early; the one-goal deficit after one period was flattering. Knowing these players, what they’ve been capable of in the past, these results serve as such a sad and shocking epilogue to an era in which such depths would’ve seemed so farfetched four years ago.

Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

One of every seven games this season has been a loss by at least four goals. Any of the morning-after assessments of the previous six applies here, even if the names and faces change from game to game. On Saturday, the wheel of misfortune landed on Dustin Brown, whose puck over the glass with two seconds remaining in the first period afforded Gabriel Landeskog, Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen and the sixth-ranked power play an opportunity to stretch their legs and get some good work in. From there, the Avalanche – let’s not forget there are two teams on the ice – put on a dazzling display of puck movement, player movement, speed, skill and playmaking that served as a resolute response to a disappointing road trip towards the tail end of a disappointing pre-break stretch. “It’s three playoff games,” Rantanen said of the Avalanche’s three-game home stand to the Denver Post, and all credit goes to their top line for backing it up with a dominating performance. But there still has to be more pride from this Kings team than to let a game get away in the second period to a degree that hadn’t been equaled in nearly 20 years. Sometimes games get ugly because of the emotional response, and sometimes it’s based more in tactics and the shift to push for offense. “It was definitely a little bit of both cases,” Anze Kopitar said.

Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Lead photo via Michael Martin/NHLI

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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.