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Game Day Watch, 2/1: Colorado Avalanche @ Los Angeles Kings

A home game? How odd.

NHL: Los Angeles Kings at Colorado Avalanche Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

HOW TO WATCH

Game Time: 7:30 PM Pacific
TV: NBCSN
Radio: KABC AM 790
Stream: NBC Sports (requires cable subscription)

WHAT TO WATCH FOR

if you’re a Kings fan: The call-up of Paul LaDue shouldn’t serve as a warning to Brayden McNabb and Kevin Gravel, but it does cast some intrigue on the bottom pairing. Is Darryl Sutter content with those two filling out his rotation? Overall both players have been serviceable, although based on our Rank the Players features, there’s room for improvement. Keep an eye on them

if you’re an Avalanche fan: Is there any point in rooting for a tank when you’re already 10 points and 22 goals worse than any other team in the league? I thought the Kings would be doing Colorado a favor by beating them, but it almost makes no difference at this pint.

if you’re a hockey fan: The Kings just passed the St. Louis Blues in the Western standings. They haven’t finished ahead of them since 2010-11. Milestones! LA will be competing against the Central for playoff positioning, barring a huge drop-off from the three teams ~10 points ahead in the Pacific or a surprise run from Vancouver or Calgary. Sure, Colorado isn’t the Central rival, but it’s a national game and you won’t be asleep yet.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

for the Kings: Tanner Pearson. Pearson is the second-leading goal-scorer on the Kings, and he’s very unlikely to give that spot up. But with guys like Kopitar and Gaborik finding their form, we don’t want to lose Pearson’s contributions. Yesterday was only the second time in 20 games Pearson put fewer than two shots on goal, but that didn’t mean he was bad.

for the Avalanche: Gabriel Landeskog. Hello, trade bait.

LEAGUE/WORLDWIDE WATCH

  • Another bottom-pairing defenseman with potential merit was also waived today. [Habs Eyes on the Prize]
  • Sound like any teams you know? [SB Nation]
  • You got to see some Alexander Burmistrov yesterday. So far he’s a waiver success story. [Five for Howling]

WATCH THIS

Highlights!