“We Have to Win”…Incorrect Young Tyler

Tyler Toffoli’s words are incomplete.

“We have to play like we have to win.”

That’s it.

Kopitar is playing like the starting center for the Slovenian National Team, Dustin Brown is in full pre-trade rumor form and Rob Scuderi, Robyn Regehr and Drew Doughty need a nice reminder about the importance of gap control in the defensive zone.

If that remains the state of things, then we’re fucked.

I prefer not to be fucked.

How do we avoid such a fate?

Stop playing defense in the offensive zone

Against a good defense, the F3 hangs back a little to avoid the quick breakout just in case the F1 and F2 don’t recover the puck.

The hell with that.

Their defensemen are mobile and smart. They are getting to the puck before us and we are dropping back immediately, thereby generating no offensive zone pressure. It’s time for the first two forwards to go in together and for the third to be in on the attack. If their D doesn’t feel the pressure, we won’t recover the puck and without the puck, there is no damn puck possession.

This more “aggressive” forecheck does expose us defensively but for the Hockey God’s sake, we can’t generate crap with the current approach, especially when 2/3 of our top line is on holiday. The Kings are a sound defensive team with excellent goaltending. You have to attack and then backcheck in defending the counter.

This and carrying the puck more into the zone with support and we can get quality scoring chances on these bastards.

Close those gaps

I know the Hawks are talented but that talent will mean nothing if they do not have room to maneuver. Our gap control in the neutral zone is 6 + feet. In the D zone, we are consistently giving Chicago’s forwards time to make passes. This happened against San Jose in every game we lost and didn’t in each game we won. Time = space = passing lanes = scoring chances. Lack of time = lack of space = lack of puck possession = lack of scoring chances. Easier said than done for the L.A. team of the last two games because we are treating the Blackhawks like we’re the porn star in a gang bang. If you don’t get that, you don’t belong here.

Bump Crawford

This overrated goaltender is getting a lot of credit for having an exceptional defense in front of him.

He hasn’t been tested yet.

I have watched him carefully and stupid luck (pucks hitting him that he never saw and to which he reacted thereafter) as well as a lack of traffic in front of him has given him the save percentage he enjoys. It’s time to bump this prick.

Sustained traffic doesn’t just start when the forward has the puck. When we have the puck on the forecheck, one of the wingers has to get his ass to the net, even before the play is set up. That will draw a defender and create more traffic. The Hawks have the luxury of our lazy forecheck and we have failed to do what we excelled at in the 2012 playoffs, which is to spread out the defense and find seams as a result. Enough of this crap. Penner – to the net. Brown – you dumb shit, to the net! King – you beautiful creature, to the NET!!

Frustrated As All Hell…

We can beat these guys.

We can win this series.

We haven’t shown up.

I put zero, read it again, ZERO stock in our third period play. The Hawks went into a shell so of course we are going to get chances. If we are in this to win,  then every player has to make a commitment to aggressive forechecking and creating chaos in front of Crawford.

Do it and we can win this.

Don’t and there IS NOT DAMN DON’T! DO IT! DO IT! DO IT!



Categories: L.A. Kings News

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

34 replies

  1. I still have faith.. St.Louis series part two

    • I hope your right, but this is not St. Louis. This is a way better offensive team. If Brown and Kopi don’t start playing to their capabilities, we stand ZERO chance in mounting a comeback.

  2. Well said! I wish we could put you in as head coach!

  3. Whelp, at least Regher got his first LAK goal…

  4. My, touchy touchy.

  5. It’s all Jamie Kompon’s fault. I can’t look at his stupid face without wanting to smash my TV

    Oh, and we’re done. You know it. It’s just a matter of time. Winning 4 out of 5 against THIS team? Please. We’re done.

    • What the FUCK! Did you forget about the Blues series so soon! As Bugarin said, St. Louis Pt. II! Winning 4 of 5, with 3 at home? I like our odds, 22 of last 23 postseason games when we score more than 1 goal we win, I like our odds! Or are you forgetting: We are the defending Champions, the Mother-Sutting Kings! Also, let’s not forget: Game 1 was at 2PM (FUCKING BULLSHIT) Game 2 was 27 hours later (EVEN MORE FUCKING BULLSHIT) We suck at day games and are average at best in the second game of back to back days when starting the same goaltender. We are still halfway to the Cup, our margin for error just got smaller thats all!

    • The Kings are not done. The Kings are capable of winning the Cup this year but, it is not going to be easy. I think last year’s 16-4 run in the playoffs created an unrealistic playoff expectation for us Kings fans.

      Detroit had a 3-1 series lead against the Hawks. Chicago overcame the challenge and earned a spot in the Western Conference Final. That is what Champions do when they face a tough situation. The Kings are an exceptionally good hockey team that is being challenged by another very good team. I believe that the Kings will respond.

      That said, these players are humans and not robots. It appears to me that Kopitar and Brown are not playing at last year’s playoff run level but, I can promise you that it is not because they don’t want to or are lazy.

      We beat STL and SJS which are 2 very good teams. I think if we get a couple of early bounces that we will have a shot.

      • Kevin, the Fact that they beat STL and SJS is actually part of the problem.
        The STL series was brutal. The SJS series was tough and long. Total 13 games. Last year the first two series, neither was as physical and they played a total of 9 games with loads of recuperation time.
        Then, in the WCF, you can’t compare the Coyotes to this Chicago team. They’re way more skilled and the Kings are tired and banged up. It isn’t impossible but it would take a superhuman effort to win four of five.

        This season the Kings have played the Hawks five times. Every single game the Kings have been chasing the game. Even the one they won in Chic. So, that’s the task.

  6. Hey, didn’t you used to write about hockey? About mother sutting time.

  7. Gap control + traffic on/around Crawford. Exactly right…

  8. can someone please explain to me why Dwight King continues to play above the 4th line and instead of Toffoli? I mean the kid is big and gets to the puck, but he has almost no scoring sense. And to top it off, he is extremely slow and really does not use his huge body to his advantage. Is it just that Sutter likes him to attempt to open up some lanes for his scorers?

    • Sure. I’ll try. Dwight King was on the team last year (late) and actually did pretty well.
      Another ‘big body’. Problem is, this year, he hasn’t used it…. never mind the scoring touch seemingly evaporating.

      As for Toffoli, he was in the AHL most of the year, so he’s far newer and plays a different type of game. Also, he’s a right winger and the Kings Big problem is on the left side.

  9. At this point try anything, put Pearson in the lineup instead of King or Nolan and see what happens!
    1st line center shouldn’t be Kopitar though.
    Try Stoll if Richards is going to be out.
    Toffoli, Stoll and Williams
    Brown, Kopitar and Carter
    Pearson, Lewis and Penner
    Richardson, Fraser and Clifford!

    • After last night I wouldn’t split up Toffoli, Carter and Penner. They were the only line that actually did anything out there. If Richards returns then put him at third line center or move him to the wing, Or put Kopi at third line center since he deserves to be demoted at this point.

  10. We need two bodies in front of the net on a regular basis not one occasionally!

  11. The Kings have won 14 straight home games and 22 of last 23 postseason games when we score more than 1 goal. How about we lay off the fucking ripcord a little people!

  12. Agree with this 100%. Yesterday was like seeing someone you love get slowly disemboweled. “No no no no!” I screamed “Get out of there!!!”
    Like I was at a horror movie on the south side of Chicago. Where’s the gap control?
    Why are they backing way the hell up? You’ve got to counter speed with a higher compete level, and keep the puck as much as possible. I can’t believe the hawks are coming into our zone and pretty much allowed to get great looks at the net. Don’t see too many guys challenging the shooter, getting after pucks, closing in on guys. Hawks pretty much have free reign other than the boards. Neutral zone WTF? How did we not prepare for these stretch passes they have been making for the last 3+ yrs??? If we are only gonna score 1-2 goals a game, we better make fucking sure we aren’t allowing them any. I’d only put one of these goals on quick, the rest were practically break aways were the shooters had wide open clear cut looks at the net. Kings last year would have sent these guys back into the seats if they tried all this cute shit. Who the hell is this team we are watching? arggghhh

  13. Ok so Kopitar is hurt but he’s trying to make it through this series.

    His line production is shit. Other lines need to step up and tow the line scoring wise but that’s not happening very often.

    Now Richards is out but Carts centering Toffoli and Pens looked good.

    If the Kings have any remote chance of getting through this series other lines need to step up and start chipping in scoring wise. Some of the D need to start chipping in as well.

    Doughty needs to start scoring. Fuck his +/- the squad needs goals like a wino needs a case of ripple. That’s why we got Regher (nice goal btw) to be Doughty’s backstop should an offensive rush he starts end in a bad turnover. Regher, Greene and Scuds ain’t jumping into shit so some of these O minded Dmen might as well take advantage of that and start creating more shit on rushes. Martinez is a fast ass skater. Have him carry the puck in and start the cycle.

    Forget Kopitar’s line. Williams is doing it but Kopitar and Brown are probably both hurt. If the other lines and some D don’t start chipping in, I could see a sweep coming.

  14. Also when Chicago’s forechecking they put it in a corner and then have 3 guys on the wall in the scrum. One D up covering the blue line and the other D might be cheating a little inside the blue line. Once they dump the puck in the corner and start their forecheck, immediately pass it out towards the middle (sketchy I know) because there’s no one there to defend. The guy cheating will back off.

    So get it off the wall fast and then start skating with it or pass it to the wing if available. Breakout immediately and join the play.

    The squad is getting killed on the forecheck but there’s clearly so much open ice right there and they can break out every time. If Chicago pulls one man off the wall to defend that pass make another adjustment. Otherwise we’re getting our asses kicked.

    • They don’t so much dump it as place it in a corner. Their F2 is the one strong on the forecheck because their 3 will get in the high percentage areas looking for a pass as soon as the F2 comes out with it. And their passing is crisp and tape to tape. This is all where our gap control is shit and also where our breakouts suffer because even when we do recover the puck, we have three forwards on us

      • That’s the thing they’re winning too many of the battles along the boards in our zone causing us to scramble back on D. Plus the turnovers in the neutral zone is way too high. Last year the squad had a killer breakout going. They need to bring that shit back. Hopefully they will make the necessary adjustments for tomorrow or else it’ll be more of the same frustrating bullshit.

  15. We’re getting our asses kicked, plain and simple…it’s horrible to witness this hard nosed, ‘lunch pail” team getting embarrassed like this…this is the NHL playoffs and we’ve all seen some crazy shit – WE CAN(!) WIN THIS THING! but we need to get back to playing Kings hockey starting with our damn defense…we KNOW we have issues on offense but we CAN score if our defense cleans clocks and dictates the pace…this smaller faster team is having their way and they need to SUFFER…that we’ve WON 22 of last 23 postseason games when we score more than ONE goal is an INSANE stat!! Take the next two and I LOVE our chances…but the question is, “Has this team anything left in the tank???” I sure as hell hope so.

  16. And WTF is Boston doing to the Penguins?????? That should be US playing like that!!!!! DAAAAMNN…..stinkin chowdaheads

    • they r getting in their heads. playing hardnosed, tough playoff hockey. something the kings can do to chicago. just haven’t yet…they will at home. on a side note i wish bernier would of strolled a little farther down and kicked crawford’s ass.

    • Boston’s playing outta their minds right now. 6-1 in a conference final game? The coach oughta bag skate their lazy asses.

  17. Lost the cup to head shots address Bollands hit NHL

  18. We’re done. I’ve been very hard on Daryl Sutter all postseason for some of the very things you just pointed out, how the forecheck isn’t as aggressive anymore, basically playing a 1-2-2 instead of 2-1-2, and all of these things almost cost us against San Jose where our injured team was evenly matched with their healthy team.

    However, the injuries are just too much now. Coming off two hard series, now playing the best team yet, we just don’t have the horses with Mitchell out, Kopitar playing without his speed and acceleration, Brown and Williams both playing injured. And then two of our big guns from last year’s run, Dwight King and Jordan Nolan, I guess their success went to their heads this year because they both got slower and worse this year instead of going and working out with Gary Roberts or someone like that like the most successful prospects do and getting even better in the offseason. Also Mike Richards is out now, not that he’s ever been a dominant offensive player since coming to LA, but he’s still an important depth piece who’s found ways to put up points despite not being the best possession player.

    That’s why our offense is crap. A few important players have regressed since last year, and most the ones that haven’t are injured.

    Then you look at our defense, it’s a mess. Robyn Regehr is no longer a quality NHL player. No idea what Dean Lombardi is doing with that guy. I’m not even sure he gets signed early in free agency if they let him go UFA. He might have been one of those guys that goes deep into the summer and eventually ends up signing a one year deal for 1 million dollars. Instead Dean Lombardi gives him a 2 year deal for 3 million per? i just dont get it. Even the NBC announcers were saying how a couple years ago, so this is when he’s a couple years younger than even now, everyone thought he was washed up around the league. Which is exactly what Im saying, people think he’s washed up, it’s possible no one would have even offered him a big deal early in free agency.

    But that’s next year. The problem right now is we have one top two-way defenseman, Drew Doughty, one quality offensive defenseman with defensive smarts but who still struggles with bigger forwards in Slava Voynov, and then we have a bunch of one dimensional guys who can often be problems. We have the lesser version of Rob Scuderi, on the decline, who has played like crap all playoffs. We have Robyn Regehr who cant hit the net with his shot for his life and cant skate and cant make good breakout passes. We have Matt Greene who has played better than Scuderi and Regehr but who is also defense only and not the best at getting the puck to our forwards and breaking out. And then we have Muzzin and Martinez who are both struggling.

    So that’s either 1 or 2 good two-way defenseman. At most 2 of 6 if you include Voynov, the rest being problems in some way or another. Or if you include Green, 3 of 6. Still not good enough. What’s normal for a Cup team is 6 of 6 or 5 of 6 with one average guy who won’t hurt you too much even if he’s not great. Last year we had Doughty, Voynov (who counted much more when he was with Mitchell), Mitchell, Scuderi before the decline, so that’s 4 already, and then Greene worked much better in the bottom pairing role with so much quality ahead of him, and Martinez was playing better. That’s 4 to 6 depending on how much credit you want to give these guys. Now it’s 3 at most.

    But my frustrating with the Regehr contract aside that’s motivating a lot of this complaining about the defense, the defense isn’t the problem so much as about 90% of our top offensive guys either regressing from last year or being injured. The only improvement we have over last year to go with so many examples of decline is Tyler Toffoli, and Sutter for some unknown reason has refused to try to leverage that advantage and use him as much as possible to balance out the declines in other areas. Instead he plays him on the 4th line or scratches him and he’s wasting that one advantage over last year, which he cant afford to do when we have so many other disadvantages.

    Everyone said you’re lucky to go through a Cup run completely healthy, and it probably won’t happen again. Everyone said that when we won the Cup. Well now I think people should stick to their word because it’s happening right now, and we can’t just overlook that because we wish it wasn’t happening. It’s happening and for anyone that thought we were going to win the Cup with Kopitar injured, let alone Brown, Mitchell, the list goes on, I think that was wishful thinking. This is a team that can’t score, period, with the injuries we have, and the only reason we got through the first two rounds is we were lucky to draw teams that couldn’t score either, at least not when their average offenses combined with Jonathan Quick’s amazing play. But now we’re playing an elite offense and there’s only so much Quick can do. We need to be able to score more goals, which we can’t because our offense is injured, so the only other option is we need our defense to be able to shut down an elite offense, which it can’t without Willie Mitchell.

    And if Mitchell is done for good, we need an upgrade in that spot for next year, which is why I’m so fucking pissed that Lombardi wasted that money we could have used towards that upgrade on Robyn fucking Regehr. What a stupid, loyalty-based move. Just because you know the guy and he used to be good and he’s a leader or whatever doesn’t mean he’s still a good enough hockey player to give us what we need.

    • You are one negative fool, and most of all spoiled.

      The ranting about Regehr is based in somewhat in reality but is truly just frustrated scapegoating after the guy has one rough game. He has been a rock on defense in the playoffs.

      You want to complain about the defense, start with Drew Doughty, who is being disgustingly outplayed by Keith. That’s a much bigger problem for the team than Regehr.

      • It’s TM in disguise

        • The hell it was. I have, and always will, wish Mr. Sutter and the Los Angeles Kings nothing but success and positivity. This team has an extremely high compete level and they can and will persevere.

          Peace out, homies.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 4,286 other followers

%d bloggers like this: