L.A. vs. San Jose: The Hey Sharks Fans, Vete A La Chingada Open Forum

I am enjoying tacos al carbon for dinner. I even got a delicious horchata. I don’t eat Mexican food very often but, when I do, it brings something out of me. Spanish is not my first language…it’s not even my third.

Tonight, we take on the culeros from San Jose. There was a time when I liked this franchise but, after the last playoff series, they are on the same va chingate list as the Ducks, Canucks and Red Wings. We beat these putas last game but, by what score, I do not recall. I am betting though it was two goals or less and Jonathan Quick stood on his head…in fact, as I write this, it’s bringing back memories.

Back to back games will offer a ready-made excuses for laying an egg tonight but we have neither the time nor luxury for that crap. We need points. Two is preferred and is, in fact, mandatory.

The Sharks lost Martin Havlat. He was playing like a pendejo anyway so how much it will affect San Jose, I don’t know. Speaking of feo pendejos, the Sharks boast one of the ugliest groups of players in hockey even with the departure of Setoguchi. On top of that list is the cara de culo, Ryane Clowe. I haven’t forgotten his cheap shot and general bitch tactics at the end of the last game…it’s interesting that I remember that but couldn’t recall the damn score. If Kevin Westgarth serves any purpose on this team, I hope to see it unleashed tonight. Yeah, yeah, our old friend Michal Handzus is a Shark. Don’t care. Just want a W.

The L.A. Kings forward group have to build on last night’s victory against the Ducks especially on the forecheck and zone entries, the latter of which still needs work while the former improved. I am also looking at Jack Johnson, Matt Greene and Drew Doughty to be better defensively. Before you tell me “but Drew got the 1st star”, yeah, I have no damn idea how that happened given his defensive lapses and a penalty that nearly cost us the game. On a positive note, let’s see if Anze can get a goal or two and add assists. He had a terrific game, along with Dustin Brown, last night. If anyone is due, it’s Justin Williams & Simon Gagne. Both have underwhelmed in the “finish” department. I hope Jonathan Bernier gets the start.

This is your open forum and while San Jose Sharks fans can vete a la verga, I love each of you as my brothers and sisters of puck.

GO KINGS!



Categories: L.A. Kings News

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32 replies

  1. I hope Jonathan Bernier gets the start.

    … Hahahahaha this site always brings the comedy.

    Two is preferred and is, in fact, mandatory.

    … MUST WIN!

  2. Oh Greene. Facepalmage.

    Richardson…. Let’s see some finish. That opportunity was golden!

  3. See the speed the Sharks attacked with before that penalty was called? Not just speed, either. Marleau reaked havoc down the wing getting everyone out of position and creating space, then I believe Vlasic used his size and grit to battle and draw a penalty.

    The Sharks have always been faster than the Kings, as is most every team, but last year the Kings matched them because of their size, which Scribe you touched on in your blog as did I in the similar one. Losing Handzus, Simmonds, Ponikarovsky, and Smyth, thats a ton of size, really the Kings “best” size up front save for Kopitar. You could say Penner too, but he doesnt use it. Im sure there are some exceptions that come and go, but that was the Kings size right there, like half of it, all gone, not replaced.

    So now the Sharks are faster AND bigger. I talked about this with Wings fans during the Sharks/Wings series the last two seasons too in the postseason. The Wings were better at passing than the Sharks, and trickier, more creative (the Kings aren’t even that), but my thesis was none of that makes much of a difference (at least not ENOUGH) if the other team is faster AND bigger than you. You can slower, as long as you can grind them down and beat them with your size. You can be smaller if you’re significantly faster. But beat in both those areas? First, the other team will dominate you on both sides of the puck through the middle of the ice because of their speed. In other words, their backcheckers will catch your forwards faster than yours will catch them on the backcheck, they’ll get to loose pucks first, theyll gain the zone faster, they’ll be better from 20 yard line to 20 yard line, so to speak, to use a football metaphor.

    And if they’re bigger then you, too, they’ll also beat you in the red zone, along the walls. So theyre going to win more board battles AND beat you to more pucks from 20 to 20 with their speed.

    Its hard to come back from that. Basically, when a team is bigger and faster, they will be on you like white on rice. Saw as much when the Sharks played Detroit. No one on the Wings could find ANY space except for the likes of Datsyuk, and even he had to work way too hard for it. In essence, he couldnt just skate into room that was already there because the Sharks beat him to every spot, to every passing lane. He had to go above and beyond, making crazy dekes, stopping and starting, taking strange angles, just to find space.

    Its like I wrote in my article. the Kings lost the size advantage they had over everyone when they lost the aforementioned players, and while they added more finesse skill in Gagne and Richards, they did not add enough to create a speed identity, either. Theyre sort of caught in between right now with neither enough size nor speed to rely on. They have no “bread and butter” right now, let alone a fancy desert.

    Wow Greene just missed an open net. Just another of a billion reasons hes not an NHL defenseman. Youre starving for goals and you cant hit an open net.

  4. Another problem Ive always had with the Kings. Aside from Brown who has shown me something with his shot the last couple years (even if he’s getting less and less opportunities), this is a very poor shooting club. Couture, Clowe, Marleau, who am I missing, all pick the corner with regularity. All truly elite wrist shots. Also Burns’ shot from the point is better than any Kings dman. And I didnt even mention Havlat who isnt bad (but not elite like the other three forwards). Then there’s the emerging Mcginn who no one knows about because he plays on the 3rd line, but he has a pretty decent shot. Even the 4th liners, guys like Brad Winchester, they may not be overly skilled, but because Doug Wilson refuses to sign anybody smaller than like 6’4″ (its crazy), these guys are huge and powerful and they at least get a shitload of power behind their shots.

    The kings have a problem here. Kopitar, same as Joe Thornton, he has a very long stick, and he sort of sling-shots it. This makes it not just a slower release, but not always the most accurate. He does not have an elite shot by any stretch of the imagination. Neither does Williams, who is more of a passer. Penner has a pretty good one but he isnt getting any chances to use it whatsoever, and Im not sure even his is as good as the Couture’s of the world. Gagne doesnt either, small skilled guy with accuracy but not sure he has the power. Honestly with Gagne I dont have the best idea for the specifics of his shot because its not as good as it used to be, so you have to reassess a bit, but clearly its not elite in the way that Couture’s is. Wow did I forget Pavelski, I did. His wrister is amazing. That goes to my point. So many great shots on the Sharks, you lose track. They have four shooters all of whom would be the best one on the Kings, with only Brown and Penner coming close. There’s Stoll I guess who is great on shootouts, but hes not as good at shooting during the game from various angles as the Sharks I mentioned.

    Couture just stole the puck from three Kings. Talent talent talent.

    Anyway, people have always harped on the Kings lack of speed, Helene Elliot talks about that a lot, but I ddont think people realize how bad they are at finishing when they do get chances. I would be curious to see how their shot percentage compares to other teams on non-rebound chances. I think Ive heard someone talk about this before, but the Kings need a “gamebreaker.” We talked Giroux vs Kopitar about a week ago, and while Giroux is a better player offensively just in general, its not just that, its that hes a “gamebreaker.” He will take it end to end and pick a corner. You give him an inch and its a goal. He scores on like 9/10 breakaways its ridiculous. The Kings need a gamebreaker badly.

    Thornton is dominating Kopitar in the D-zone right now.

  5. Brutal breakout right there. Kings win faceoff clean turn it over because the Sharks pinch more aggressively than any team in the NHL and no one has figured out how to counter it. Just caused a penalty.

    Couture just dove. He does this all the time. Hell pretend to be injured right up until the ref calls a penalty, then hell be out on the next PP.

  6. This is the game thread, right? Not too many people responding in here right now besides you guys.

    • It’s the Friday before Christmas, I think many people are out and about…like I will be in about 30 minutes.

      • Thats a pretty good point, I must say. When thinking about hockey I guess Im oblivious to everything around me. But it is right before thanksgiving, you’re right. Thats weird though my wife hasnt bought a turkey yet. Well she was always a last-minute type of gal.

  7. Quick has really been something this year. Was always a top 12 goaltender, but up until this year i didnt quite feel he was quite as good as people thought. Ive always believed you cant underestimate the negative impact of soft goals. Quick isnt the biggest goaltender and there were games like the 4-goal comeback by SJ last season where you just need him to make a save, and he doesnt, or where he lets in a bad soft goal.

    But this year I feel hes really come into his own. Doing everything great that he always did great, and covering just that little bit more net and moving a tad faster so that he lets in that one less goal in the critical games.

  8. Can someone explain how that stuck stick whistle was fair? Wait until the kings are breaking the other way and then blow the whistle? That seems inherently unfair.

    Shouldn’t they blow the whistle as soon as San Jose has the puck, or not at all?

    • It works both ways. I remember when the net came off and Quick was just standing there, kings had it in the offensive zone for quite awhile before there was any stoppage

    • Yes, but the NHL is stupid.

      Its the same thing when a net goes off the mooring. Oh just play while they have the puck, then blow it down when u have it. Thats fair.

      Except that the attacking team, if they know you cant score on their goal, dont have to worry about giving up a breakaway, or a 2on1. They can all rush the net at once, all 5, and they get an unfair and increased chance to score the goal because they dont have to worry about defense if the second the other team gets the puck it will be blown dead.

      It’s like playing for a minute without having a goal. Only their goal can be scored on, not yours.

      People like myself, with a brain (a whole ONE of them, for my own head, not to brag or anything) can figure that stuff out. The NHL? This is why when Surly or Scribe (which was it) tells me keeping it simple isnt always simple, and the GMs arent really that stupid, I start to have doubts. This is pretty simple. How can I professional sports league, after a hundred years or whatever, still have such an unfair situation within their game not by choice, but just because they havent figured it out yet?

      I know being a sports fan is difficult for a lot of people for different reasons, but this is my reason. I honestly feel like i am smarter and better equipped to manage an NHL hockey team than most the professionals actually managing them. Its frustrating being a dolphin rooting for a team run by a goldfish, and you have to wait and wait as they try to improve the team a snail’s length at a time (enough animals and insects in that sentence that is not about animals or insects?). I honestly feel like I could built a cup winner faster than Dean Lombardi or Doug Wilson, and watching them stumble about making bad decisions when you yourself feel you know the right decisions (and are usually proven correct in that), it’s very frustrating.

  9. Oops only meant for one paragraph to be bold.

  10. Had something there right until Trent Hunter got his hands on the puck and made a shit pass up the middle. Damnit, where is Oscar Moller? Too late to guarantee him an NHL roster spot and bring him back?

  11. Couture shot. Kings have no one who can do what Couture just did, and Couture does that all the time.

  12. Sharks completely outmuscled the Kings in the corner, too, creating too much space just by bouncing Kings bodies off them. Marleau got like 4 feet just shouldering someone. Marleau. If hes that strong, just imagine Clowe and the bigger guys.

  13. Clowe: 10 pounds of douche in a 5 pound bag.

  14. Mike mother-sutting Richards – like a boss.

  15. … The fans in San Jose do an awful lot of crying, don’t they?

  16. Most retarded shootout i have ever seen. Stoll shoots.. at the fucking pad. The other three all deke, like jackasses, and were all three fivehole? At least two.

    When are teams going to realize? Dekes dont work in the shootout. Teams that just go up there and shoot have way better odds. Clowe shot, and won the game. The Sharks always shoot in the shootout, I watch every game, and thats why they win almost every one.

  17. Have to say the Kings got what they deserved though. Sharks were the better team, Kings still cant score, if it wasnt for a fantastic individual play by the savior Mike Richards they would have been shutout. No one else really got close.

  18. Hunter should have had a chance in the shootout. The coaches seem to see something special in him.

  19. I just cant believe the thickness on display at the NHL level. Keeping play going with the net off, stickhandling in the shootout. Dont they have the data? You skate up to the sweet spot in the slot, fire it at one of the top corners, and its just percentages. The goaltender cant react that quickly to a hard snapshot from 10 feet out hardwired at the corner. They have to guess which corner, or if it’s going to be under an arm, they try to swing at it, and they have a 50/50 chance normally.

    50% is absolutely elite for any shooters in the shootout.

    I mean jesus, just look at Jarret Stoll. Best shootout taker on the Kings. Why? Hes not the most talented King, I dont even think hes the King with the best shot.

    But he shoots. Every time. Thats why.

    How can they not have this data? It just boggles the mind how NHL teams are managed and coached like peewee teams. “Oh yeah, we didnt have time to get that data. Sorry. Just do your best.”

    *Shakes head*

    At least one of my teams got a victory, but the Sharks will be fine. Its the Kings I want to see pick it up.

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