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NHL Playoff Preview: Are the Kings Really NHL Royalty?

Written by Andrew Scofield   
Tuesday, 29 May 2012 07:25

2012 Stanley Cup OddsThe sports betting experts had been writing off the Los Angeles Kings for the last few years because, no matter who the Kings put in the lineup with Anze Kopitar, the team could not score goals. Even the rise of goaltender Jonathan Quick did not do enough for people to take note of what was going on in Los Angeles. It is odd that a city like Los Angeles can be the place where stars are made in every medium except ice hockey. Now the legal online sports betting sites have taken notice of the Kings and have given Los Angeles an excellent chance to win the Stanley Cup. But are the Kings really ready to be NHL royalty?

Offense
On paper, the Los Angeles Kings should have a very potent offense. With players such as Jeff Carter, Mark Richards, Brad Richardson, Dustin Brown and Anze Kopitar, it is amazing that the Kings do not score four and five goals a game every single game. But the game is not played on paper, and the Kings struggled all season long.

So what has changed for Los Angeles? Jeff Carter is a strong playmaker and someone with the ability to stand in front of the net and cause confusion. Carter did not join the team until the trade deadline this season. The price per head sports experts are always hesitant to say that any one player can make a team win. But it looks like Carter was the catalyst that the Los Angeles offense needed to start putting pucks in the net. The hard work of Dustin Brown and the playmaking of Jeff Carter has sparked the Los Angeles offense to life, and just in time.

Defense
The Los Angeles Kings' defense can be summed up in two words; Jonathan Quick. A sportsbook review of Quick's play for the past three seasons shows a goalie that has been a star almost since he entered the league. He incredibly focused as he has only amassed eight penalty minutes in the last four seasons. Quick's focus is on the game and making sure that the Kings are always in a position to win. He is surrounded by an aggressive defense made up of big and fast players. But the center of the Los Angeles defense is Jonathan Quick. He is the reason that the Kings were able to hang in there earlier in the season when the offense was struggling, and he is the reason why the Kings have an excellent chance at winning the Stanley Cup.

Outlook
The NHL fans in Los Angeles have watched their team go to the Stanley Cup Finals one time before. That was a team that featured Wayne Gretzky on the ice and Barry Melrose behind the bench. This version of the Kings is a much better team than that previous team and this team is favored to win it all. By the time the Stanley Cup Finals is over, the Los Angeles Kings should be considered NHL royalty.

 
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