2013 Season Preview – Los Angeles Kings


Last Season – After sneaking into the playoffs as the 8th seed, the Kings caught lightning in a bottle and steamrolled their way to the first Stanley Cup in franchise history.

Saying Goodbye – Trent Hunter, Ethan Moreau

Saying Hello – none

Ready to Step In – Although his skating ability might hold him back at the NHL level, former Ottawa 67’s winger Tyler Toffoli is a pure goal scorer who could get a shot if an injury happens in the Kings top 6.  He might have to wait, however, as the lineup is pretty much set.

To be the Champs, you have to beat the Champs. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-USA TODAY Sports

Look For A Bounce-back Season From – Simon Gagne has had some extra time to put his injury woes behind him.  Suiting up for just 34 regular season games, Gagne got into 4 playoff games but with so much time off was largely ineffective.  Adding his talent to the team will be a case of the rich getting richer.

Hardware Hopefuls – Mike Richards, Selke; Drew Doughty, Norris; Jonathan Quick, Vezina

Upside – The Kings return the same roster that won the Stanley Cup.  With little to no turnover, they have the recipe for success.  Add to that an extra 3 months to get over the “hangover” and they should be ready to defend.

Downside – As the champs, the Kings will find out quickly what it is like to have a target on their backs every single night.

2013 Prognosis – The Kings are made for the playoffs, and they will get there again. There isn’t much to choose between the top teams in the west, and it will be a war if they want to get back to the top of the mountain.  I am not saying they will or they won’t but the leadership and coaching gives them the chance to repeat.