Coach Sutter’s Perfect Record & Visnovsky’s Loser Point

Well, there you have it Kings fans, Darryl Sutter is the perfect coach. A nice, round 100% winning record in his time with the Kings. Terry Murray, for all his compete, can’t claim that shit. The Kings win 3-2 over the Ducks in a shoot out and all is well is LaLa land.

Or so the Germans would have us believe.

While I am happy the Kings got off on the right foot under Sutter and have put together their first winning streak in the month of December (don’t argue with me that the win over Florida on December 1st was their second win in a row, they ain’t won two in a row IN December until tonight), I reserve the right to remain cynical. Positive, but very cynical until they can score more than two goals in a game. Hell even if it’s in a losing effort, I just want this horrid string of 2 goals or less games to end. What’s it at, 13 games now? As Bobby likes to say, pfft.

Speaking of Bobby, after the game he said to me that all the love he had for Visnovsky is officially gone. I think that’s a little harsh and probably just a front, trying to convince me the latent OC Duck love he has demonstrated is just a figment of my active imagination. I won’t go so far as I will always have a soft spot for Lubo and cookies in general, but that rat bastard, the defenseman who plays like the $7 million man he isn’t, did gain the undeserving Ducks a point in the standings with his beastly goal to tie the game in the second period. Whose shot was better, Visnovsky’s or Brown’s? I’m going with Brown. That was as marvelous as Stan Lee comic book, yuk yuk. Funny how both teams scored their first goals on quick point deflections and their second goals on perfect wristers from about the same distance. Was Lubo’s a wrister? I don’t remember.

Was the Duck’s loser point really an undeserving one? Yes it was. Despite offensive struggles that won’t work themselves out over night, the Kings controlled the vast majority of that game, in large part due to a forecheck that featured not one, but two players going deep to battle for pucks. Fancy that, we spent our time hounding the puck instead of patiently waiting along the half wall for a fortuitous bounce. For a first outing under a new coach, the Kings demonstrated a cohesiveness we have not seen much of lately.

Let us not forget to credit John Stevens, who coached the Kings to a loss so miserable it inspired the kind of reenergized performance against Toronto on Monday that allowed Sutter to simply bring in a fresh message that translated to immediate results. Now the real work begins. Now a new forecheck and an improved neutral zone system can be ingrained into the heads of these players. Of course, they do have to deal with San Jose first, a better test than the defensively abhorrent Ducks.

Oh wait, I should probably comment on some things that happened in the game. Well… The fans were completely quiet until the fantastic penalty kill in OT. I counted exactly 4 ‘let’s go Kings’ chants throughout the game. There was a ‘Hiiiiiller’ chant that went on for quite a while. I would have appreciated it except that it happened at the drop of the puck in the first period, which is outright strange. I’ve noticed this becoming a trend, razzing the opposing goalie before anything has happened in the game. I’m pretty sure it comes from the same section every game. It’s probably the same guy. Hey guy, stop that. Oh crap, the game.

I liked Sutter’s concept of putting an energy player on each of the top 3 lines. Richardson relishes opportunities and made the space in front of Hiller’s face his home. Lewis, hands of stone though he has, carried the puck through the neutral zone with authority. Stoll… Well his shoot out goal was nice and he threw his weight around. I’m starting to wonder if Williams will ever come out of his funk. Good on Fraser for fighting. Next time don’t let Belesky win. Jack Johnson on the third pairing? Between he and Greene that’s a damn expensive third pairing but monetary considerations aside, that’s the kind of bottom pairing I like to see.

Let’s see… What else, what else. Richards rules. I like the frequent attempts at one timers. Kopitar carrying the puck through the center of the ice jingles my bells. Getzlaf is an asshole and Perry looks very comfortable on his knees, where he spend much of his time tonight. Some guy in front of me had a big problem with Beauchemin, so that was amusing. Selanne’s game is beautiful in a ‘I want to push the prom queen down the stairs’ sort of way. I think that about sums it up. Oh wait, Duck fans are disgusting. Duck fans that wear Chicago Blackhawks hats are worse.

2 more points please.

Go Kings Go



Categories: L.A. Kings News

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13 replies

  1. Well played game overall imo. I thought they dominated most of the game with fairly good, consistent intensity and work ethic. Brown is starting to come around.

    As for Gezlaf, that punk pansy bitch with his cheap ass cross check to Brown was a Bitch move and Brown shoulda pummeled his dumb ass.

  2. For all the Brown haters out there, all I have to say to you is “This game!” I swear he was working so hard out there he looked like a one man team at times.

    Drop pass -> goal. I never see the Kings drop pass, and look what happened. That was a killer shot. I loved all the cross-seam passing, even if rusty Richards shanked his shot on his first chance and mishandled receiving the puck in OT–yet he manages a killer deflection. I still love him though.

    Sutter preaches accountability but Doughty pulls a classic Doughty blunder by letting Ryan (or was it Perry?) get position on him in OT and is forced to take a bad penalty. Then Doughty is out there on the PP for the last 30s. Hmmmmm.

    All in all this was an interesting, insightful and maybe even inspiring game. All the Kings problems were still apparent in this game and yet you could CLEARLY see all these little changes, tweaks and improvements all over the place–especially with making better passing plays–that give good cause for hope that they will really carry on with some good forward momentum and make real progress. Ya, I know it’s just one game, but I stand by it.

  3. What’s wrong with hazing the opposing goalie? Is your point that you would rather him make a mistake first then start the chanting? I think that’s true for goalies like Luongo or Fleury but Hiller sucks in the first place and if you haze him from the very start then, *when* he makes a mistake, there’s a slight increase in potential to really getting in his head. It’s the same thing for some of the 3rd/4th line wingers. They’re bound to make a mistake and when they do you’re right there to make them feel at home.

    If nothing else, it makes the opposing fans well aware of the fact that they’re in our house.

    As a side note, I would love to take credit for the chanting tonight but I wasn’t at the game.

    • I heard the “Hiiiiiilllllleeeeerrrrrrr” chant after the second goal as well. Totally appropriate then. :)

    • Damn, Kings fans have always done that. Especially to Bill Ranford. They would chant his name when he wasnt even playing, when the back up was starting and stayed in the whole game.

      • I haven’t been to opening night since Ranford was brought in as goaltending coach, but I would love to hear the Rannnnnnnnn-ford chant on TV when he is announced opening day. Somebody please make my wish come true!!!

    • I think that’s better to do right off the bat when you are in another team’s barn AND/OR sitting right behind the goalie. For example, I flew up to San Jose last playoffs for game 5, we’re we destroyed the Sharks and Niemi sucked. I was sitting like 10 rows behind Niemi and before the puck dropped I laid into him with the chanting and what do you know, he gives up a crappy goal almost immediately. Players expect to hear it when they are on the road, but at home it’s a whole other story.

      Now I will say part of my annoyance with last nights chanting at Hiller is strictly because there was very little Go Kings chants. If you can raise your pice to razz a goalie then goddamnit use it to support your team as well. I would prefer they start off right away with a Let’s Go Kings! But I wasn’t until late in the 2nd period when I heard a Go Kings chant from the same area of Staples. People have it backwards to me. You razz the opposing goalie after he fucks up and chant for your team right off the bat, as opposed to razzing the goalie right away and waiting for your team to do something good to support them. Make sense?

      • Ya, I would agree, support the good guys more than bashing the bad guys but a healthy balance of both is best.

        I heard the game on radio and noticed two chants, one was a “Go Kings, Go” in the 3rd, and the other was a “Hiller” after the second Kings goal. I noticed the shootout chants some too. I’m not sure if this is because I was listening on the radio rather than on TV or at the game (out of town for the holidays).

  4. Re: Stone Hands Lewis

    In general I really liked the new lines, or perhaps what’s being asked of them. Clifford worked his ass off in the first, created opportunities and recovered a lot of pucks from the half boards and corners( Im blanking on what he did in second and third). Lewis new role…. Could be interesting. The obvious hesitation is his shot and his Michael J Fox hands but what I noticed last night was how much open ice he was finding and how many open lanes he was finding himself in. Thats hockey sense that you cant really teach and perhaps the hands is nerves since hes never been expected to score much and a lack of comfort. But these guys are professional level players there is a minimum amount of skill within them so maybe with a little time his mind can slow down and communicate with those hands and damn fast feet.

    Or maybe we all chip in and send him some of those Sean Skinner puck control dvds.

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