First of all, go read Nick's post from last Wednesday on the Benn & Seguin thing if you haven't already. He did a masterful job calmly explaining that entire situation, even though it does not directly affect him, and speaking as an LGBTQ person I really appreciated it. God knows I was too infuriated last week to say much of anything rational on the subject myself. And as always, huge thanks to Eric for letting us wield this platform in a way that does legitimate good. That's all I really want to say about that particular garbage fire, I guess.
Anyway, onto the previous week of Kings hockey, with a few disclaimers. First of all, I was on, uh, I guess let's call it vacation from Thursday-Sunday, and saw exactly one period of hockey the entire time (the 3rd period between the Kings & Caps, which was a good period to watch at least!). So if the notes are sparser and/or more stats-heavy than usual, now you know why. Somewhat-related, I slept about 14 hours today after sleeping about 12 total in the four days previous, so I'm feeling this weird mix of dizzy and groggy that's hard for me to really describe. So I apologize if this is full of weird typos or errors. I hope it's not, but it's very possible it will be. Do not live my lifestyle, kids.
This Week in Games
(here's all the games involving the Pacific Division from this past week. we'll talk about the LA Kings' games in great detail, while the rest will mostly just be scores, unless there's something that really stood out about them. you'll also get links to Eric's awesome recaps which will expand on everything I'm saying in much greater detail if you missed any of them.)
Monday, February 9th
-Edmonton Oilers 2, New Jersey Devils 1
-Los Angeles Kings 4, Columbus Blue Jackets 3: Hey! A game I actually watched! As already mentioned that will be kind of rare this week so we should definitely celebrate this occasion. This was basically one of those Kings specialties, where they utterly destroyed the Jackets by any metric other than the scoreboard (shots on goal were 44-26 Kings- yes, you read that right- in a game where they lead for most of it). After two periods that were closer than they had any business being, the Kings looked like they were going to coast to victory at first following Dustin Brown's 9th goal of the season (yes, his 9th, ugh) just 1:49 into the 3rd frame. But because this is the Kings, of course nothing could be that easy. Instead, David Savard scored with under 2 minutes left to play and that kicked off a frantic finale where the puck never seemed to leave LA's zone. Everyone waited for the inevitable 2014-15 Kings collapse to occur, but shockingly it didn't happen and the victory was secured. This victory, by the way, gave LA consecutive wins since December, which is.....something else. (recap) (gamethread)
-Minnesota Wild 5, Vancouver Canucks 3
-Arizona Coyotes 3, Chicago Blackhawks 2 (SO): You know this virtual ads that the broadcasters project onto the glass now? Well, on the Chicago broadcast there was a virtual ad that literally just said "COYOTE" and then had an arrow pointing towards the net the Coyotes were shooting on. I'm not sure what that was an ad for, exactly, but it was hilarious. Also hilarious: the Blackhawks losing to the Coyotes.
-Calgary Flames 4, San Jose Sharks 1: Yes folks, the Sharks lost to the Flames in regulation twice in five days, and neither game was particularly close, either. I know we're probably not the fanbase to mock anyone for losing to Calgary lately but geez San Jose, have it tied until the final minute at least.
Tuesday, February 10th
-New York Islanders 3, Edmonton Oilers 2
-Florida Panthers 6, Anaheim Ducks 2
-St. Louis Blues 2, Arizona Coyotes 1
Wednesday, February 11th
-Vancouver Canucks 5, Chicago Blackhawks 4 (OT)
-Washington Capitals 5, San Jose Sharks 4 (OT)
Thursday, February 12th
-Anaheim Ducks 2, Carolina Hurricanes 1
-Edmonton Oilers 4, Montreal Canadiens 3 (OT)
-Los Angeles Kings 5, Calgary Flames 3: Okay so here's the game I didn't see a single second of, and in fact I was pretty drunk while it was going on. However, I do remember getting the following alert from the Kings cell phone app: "Kings 2, Flames 2. SOG: Kings 30, Flames 10". My response to this was a lot of slamming my fists down on my hotel bed and screaming obscenities about a certain goaltender. But the Kings got the job done in the 3rd, with goals by Dwight King (...kay?), Jordan Nolan (LOL), and Tyler Toffoli (finally something makes sense). We can thus add "beating the 2014-15 Calgary Flames" to the list of "Things the Kings Do Better Than the Sharks", right along side entries like "Winning Stanley Cups" and "Having a Primary Jersey Color That Isn't Dog Crap." Oh by the way Barry Melrose is an idiot I can't believe you didn't know that already. (recap) (gamethread)
Friday, February 13th
-San Jose Sharks 4, Arizona Coyotes 2: Leave it to the perpetually disappointing Coyotes to ruin the whole "The Sharks Can't Beat Bad Teams!!!" narrative. You guys are just the worst.
-Vancouver Canucks 5, Boston Bruins 2: Can neither confirm nor deny the rumor that fans celebrated this home victory by showing the world what the victory riot would have looked like in 2011.
Saturday, February 14th
-Ottawa Senators 7, Edmonton Oilers 2
-New York Rangers 5, Arizona Coyotes 1
-Calgary Flames 3, Vancouver Canucks 2
-Los Angeles Kings 3, Washington Capitals 1: The first Kings action I saw in days was the 3rd period of this game, so that means I immediately saw Trevor Lewis score a beautiful goal to put the Kings up 2-0 and I was suddenly concerned my best friend had slipped LSD into my drink as a mean-spirited prank. But no, my concerns were alleviated when Jonathan Quick gave up an awful goal to Alex Ovechkin from an almost impossibly bad angle just 1:38 later, confirming that I was in fact still well within the bounds of reality. Jarret Stoll made up for it though to restore the Kings' 3-1 lead, and the rest of the period is kind of a blur for me due to a combination of alcohol and (by this point) extreme sleep deprivation. Again, my lifestyle: not recommended. (recap) (gamethread)
Sunday, February 15th
-Washington Capitals 5, Anaheim Ducks 3
-Tampa Bay Lightning 5, San Jose Sharks 2
This Week in Standings
(5v5 SAC% = score-adjusted Corsi percentage at even strength)
|Team||GP||W||L||OTL||Points||ROW||GF||GA||Diff||Home||Away||Last Week||5v5 SAC%|
|2. San Jose||58||29||21||8||66||27||164||165||-1||14-11-5||15-10-3||1-2-1||51.6%|
|5. Los Angeles||55||25||18||12||62||24||152||148||+4||18-6-6||7-12-6||3-0-0||55.4%|
For approximately the fifteen thousandth week in a row there was no movement in the Pacific divison standings, which is obviously the bad news for us. The good news, though, is that the Kings went 3-0-0 while the rest of the division all had .500 records or worse, except for Calgary who went 2-1-0 yet again. Either way though, the Kings are three points behind the Flames for 4th with a game in hand, 3 points behind the Canucks for 3rd, and perhaps most significantly, four points behind the slumping Sharks (who went 1-2-1 for the second straight week, which is honestly just kinda bizarre) for 2nd....with THREE games in hand on them. Of course, the Kings have a game against the Sharks this coming Saturday that you might have heard about. Oh, and on top of everything else, the Kings now have the best score-adjusted Corsi in the league, as they passed Tampa this past week for the honor. Things are definitely looking up, is I guess what I'm trying to say here. Let's look at the Wild Card standings now.
|Team||GP||W||L||OTL||Points||ROW||GF||GA||Diff||Home||Away||Last Week||5v5 SAC%|
|1. Winnipeg (C)||58||29||19||10||68||24||160||153||+7||14-10-4||15-9-6||2-1-0||53.8%|
|2. Calgary (P)||56||31||22||3||65||28||162||144||+18||16-11-2||15-11-1||2-1-0||44.6%|
|3. Minnesota (C)||55||28||20||7||63||26||153||149||+4||16-7-5||12-13-2||3-0-1||52.5%|
|4. Los Angeles (P)||55||25||18||12||62||24||152||148||+4||18-6-6||7-12-6||3-0-0||55.4%|
|5. Dallas (C)||56||26||22||8||60||24||175||179||-4||12-11-6||14-11-2||2-1-0||51.2%|
|6. Colorado (C)||56||23||22||11||57||16||144||159||-15||14-11-3||9-11-8||1-1-0||43.6%|
|7. Arizona (P)||57||20||30||7||47||16||129||189||-60||9-15-4||11-15-3||1-3-0||48.8%|
|8. Edmonton (P)||57||16||32||9||41||12||131||191||-60||9-16-2||7-16-7||2-2-0||48.7%|
Yes, sadly even a 3-0-0 record on the week wasn't enough for the Kings to get back up to 9th in the West, as the Wild went 3-0-1 to get a point ahead of them. At least they did use up their game-in-hand on the Kings and only ended up 1 point ahead of LA, rather than 2, I guess? Behind the Kings, the Stars went 2-1-0 to remain 2 points back, but the Kings do have a game-in-hand. Colorado, who the Kings will play tonight, went 1-1-0 and are now five points back, and the Kings have a game-in-hand on them too. Plus the Kings are actually good and the Avalanche are garbage so that's comforting too. (Since I said that the Kings are gonna lose to them like 6-0 on Wednesday, I know.)
This Week in #fancystats
(all stats are total attempts, not percentages. thanks to
extra skater war-on-ice.)
Kings 4, Blue Jackets 3
Corsi: Kings 62-Blue Jackets 46 (overall), Kings 62-Blue Jackets 36 (5v5), Kings 12-Blue Jackets 10 (5v5 tied)
Fenwick: Kings 53-Blue Jackets 34 (overall), Kings 53-Blue Jackets 27 (5v5), Kings 11-Blue Jackets 7 (5v5 tied)
LA Indv. Player Corsi 5v5- Best: Muzzin (+16), Greene (+15), Kopitar/Brown (tied, +13). Worst: Nolan (even), Shore (+1), Regehr/Clifford (tied, +2)
CBJ Indv. Player Corsi 5v5- Best: Wennberg (+3), Anisimov (+2), Skille (+1). Worst: Johansen (-18), Hartnell/Atkinson (-17)
Kings 5, Flames 3
Corsi: Kings 87-Flames 42 (overall), Kings 74-Flames 33 (5v5), Kings 13-Flames 7 (5v5 tied)
Fenwick: Kings 65-Flames 25 (overall), Kings 53-Flames 19 (5v5), Kings 10-Flames 6 (5v5 tied)
LA Indv. Player Corsi 5v5- Best: Doughty (+26), Toffoli (+19), King/Carter (tied, +17). Worst: Nolan (-1), Clifford (+3), Stoll (+4)
CGY Indv. Player Corsi 5v5- Best: Colborne/Brodie/Bouma/Bollig (tied, -4). Worst: Russell (-31), Wideman (-27), Monahan (-17)
Kings 3, Capitals 1
Corsi: Kings 63-Capitals 56 (overall), Kings 56-Capitals 37 (5v5), Kings 39-Capitals 13 (5v5 tied)
Fenwick: Kings 48-Capitals 43 (overall), Kings 43-Capitals 28 (5v5), King 30-Capitals 11 (5v5 tied)
LA Indv. Player Corsi 5v5- Best: Gaborik (+15), Lewis/Kopitar (tied, +14). Worst: Regehr (-4), Nolan (-3), Shore (-2)
WSH Indv. Player Corsi 5v5- Best: Chimera (+6), Kuznetsov/Brouwer (tied, +4). Worst: Fehr (-20), Laich (-16), Ward (-15)
Next Week in the Pacific
(this is exactly what it sounds like: the next week's schedule for all 7 Pacific Division teams. all times are pacific because, um, duh.)
|LA||vs.TB (7:30)||-||@COL (7:00)||-||-||@SJ (7:00)||-|
|ANA||-||-||vs.TB (7:00)||-||@CGY (6:00)||@EDM (4:00)||-|
|SJ||-||@NSH (5:00)||-||@DAL (5:30)||-||vs.LA (7:00)||-|
|VAN||vs.MIN (7:00)||-||-||@NYR (4:00)||@NJ (4:00)||-||@NYI (3:00)|
|CGY||vs.BOS (6:00)||-||vs.MIN (6:30)||-||vs.ANA (6:00)||-||-|
|ARI||@COL (6:00)||-||-||-||-||vs.TB (5:00)||-|
|EDM||@WPG (5:00)||-||vs.BOS (7:00)||-||vs.MIN (6:00)||vs.ANA (4:00)||-|
The Kings finish up their homestand tonight against a Lightning team that will be looking to make up for a somewhat-embarrassing LA win in their own building just 9 days ago. After that they'll make a quick trip out to Colorado on Wednesday and then it's off to Northern California for the big Stadium Series game with the Sharks on Saturday night. If things go well enough for the Kings and bad enough for the Sharks, the Kings could have a chance to pass San Jose with a victory in that enormous game.
Meanwhile, some quick highlights for the other teams: the Ducks also have the Lightning then have both Alberta teams in a back-to-back, the Sharks are in Nashville and Dallas before the big game on Saturday, the Canucks face off with the Wild tonight before heading out to the East coast to play all three Metro New York-area teams this weekend, and the Flames have a homestand with the Bruins, Wild, and Ducks in town. No one cares about the Coyotes or Oilers, right? Right.
That's it for another week of TWIK, but check back later tonight because it's a Jewelcast week! On tonight's show I'll be joined by Derek, aka The Neutral of Fear the Fin, aka @fearthefin to help preview this week's Stadium Series game. I don't have an exact time yet but expect us to go live somewhere between 6-6:30 pacific time, so check back at the Jewels front page or on my Twitter feed for the link then!