Kings Hire Davis Payne as Assistant Coach

DENVER, CO - SEPTEMBER 23: Head coach Davis Payne (C) directs the St. Louis Blues against the Colorado Avalanche as assistant coach Brad Shaw (R) looks on during their preseason game at Pepsi Center on September 23, 2011 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)


The Kings have added former St. Louis Blues head coach Davis Payne to the staff. Although Ken Hitchcock is obviously a great coach, some of the credit he has received for the the Blues turnaround is a tad overblown. Under Payne, the Blues were the 10th best possession team in 2010-11 and in Payne's first few games this season they were a top possession team.

The problem was goaltending. Under Payne, in 10-11 they had the 3rd worst Save % in the NHL. That continued under his reign the first two months of the season as Jaroslav Halak struggled early on with a .822 save percentage and Brian Elliott had yet to come on. A lot of the Blues turnaround had to do with goaltending. An often overlooked fact as people have rushed to crown Hitchcock, while scapegoating Payne. The Kings have added what looks to be a solid coach to the staff, one who got a bit of a raw deal with the Blues.

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