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Preview, Game Day #9: Los Angeles Kings @ Winnipeg Jets

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All the excitement of a Kings @ Thrashers game, except with much worse fans!

a rare picture of tyler toffoli not scoring a goal
a rare picture of tyler toffoli not scoring a goal
Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Kings @ Winnipeg Jets

Time: 5:00 Pacific

TV: Fox Sports West, TSN3

Enemy Reading: Arctic Ice Hockey

Los Angeles Kings

Gaborik-Kopitar-Brown
Lucic-Carter-Toffoli
Pearson-Shore-Lewis
Clifford-Andreoff-Nolan

McNabb-Doughty
Muzzin-Martinez
McBain-Ehrhoff

Quick
(Enroth)

Scratched: Forbort, Weal Injured: Greene, King

Winnipeg Jets

Ladd-Little-Wheeler
Perreault-Scheifele-Ehlers
Burmistrov-Lowry-Stafford
Thorburn-Copp-Petan

Enstrom-Byufglien
Chiarot-Myers
Stuart-Trouba

Pavelec
(Hutchinson)

Stats & Such
(Making its preview debut, let's read way too much into small sample sizes! Yeah! Fancy stats courtesy War on Ice)

Team Kings Jets
Record 5-3-0 5-2-1
Points 10 11
Division Rank 2nd 4th
Streak Won 5
Won 1
Goals For/Game 2.00 3.50
Goals Against/Game 2.13 2.63
ES Goal % 42.1 56.7
ES Shot %
51.7 54.9
ES PDO 97.9 101.9
ES Corsi % 56.7 51.1
ES Fenwick % 55.5 50.6
ES Scoring Chance % 54.5 49.2
ES High-Danger SC % 54.1
45.0
Power Play % (Rank) 17.2 (17th)
24.0 (6th)
Penalty Kill % (Rank) 86.5 (10th)
84.4 (13th)
Starting Goalie (tonight) Quick Pavelec
Goalie Record 4-3-0 2-2-1
Save % .923 .916
ES Save % .927
.922

Notes:

  • Yes, enjoy that big mass of stats for the first time this season. They probably don't mean anything this early but, if you're anything like me, just staring at a big mass of numbers gives you a sense of comfort and warmth. Relax, friend. You've come home.
  • A quick disclaimer: I am guessing on Pavelec tonight, because I can't get any confirmation on who is in goal (still, after waiting hours). I'll try to come back and edit it if it turns out to be Hutchinson, but uh if it's wrong for like an hour, try to be brave. We'll get through it together.
  • The Jets are off to a fast start, building off of their first playoff berth in Winnipeg (and second in franchise history) last season. So far they're outscoring their problems with 3.5 goals-per-game, good for 4th in the league. A lethal combination of shooting 9% at even strength so far and a 24% power play is driving their strong offensive showing.
  • Even beyond their high PDO though, their shot % is well above their shot attempts, suggesting they're getting lucky with the number of shots getting through (and not getting through at the other end). These are unlikely to continue over the course of a full season, so the Jets will need to get back to the kind of strong puck possession play they showed last year (when their 52.5% even-strength Corsi was 8th in the league). They aren't that far off from that mark so far, but there's clearly room for them to improve.
  • The biggest story going around in Winnipeg actually has nothing to do with the team currently on the ice, as ex-Jet Evander Kane ripped into his old teammates for not supporting him enough. Today's response from captain Andrew Ladd to that accusation would be described as meandering at best. Oh, uh, he thinks they supported him! Probably! Maybe! Great, thanks for that Andrew.
  • Not that I even have to tell you this, but the Kings are riding high on a five-game winning streak following their horrific start to the season, and another win tonight would leapfrog them back over the Arizona Coyotes (yes, those Coyotes) for the division lead. Yesterday I discussed at length what a tire fire the division has been so far, with the only team other than the Kings & Sharks that should have really been any good flailing epicly and helping to throw things into disarray. Obviously the Kings will lose a game again at some point, but if they can continue their strong play this is a division ripe for the taking going forward.
  • The Jets, meanwhile, are stuck in the deadly hellscape that is the Central division. How badly does the Central own the Pacific right now? The Pacific has one team with at least 11 points- the friggin' Coyotes, with exactly 11. The Central has six teams with at least 11 points! That's right- the second-to-last place team in the Central, the Minnesota Wild, has the same number of points as the Pacific division leader. If you're looking for a bad team in the Central, you're talking the last place Avalanche, who are pretty bad with just 5 points on the year thus far. But those same 5 points would put the Avalanche in 5th if they were in the Pacific, a point ahead of both Calgary and Anaheim. Yeah. The Pacific sucks.
  • PREDICTION: You can't score 3 goals in EVERY game, Winnipeg! Kings win 3-2.