Should You Expect A Regression From The Kings?

Let’s look at the positives: the Los Angeles Kings had among the greatest defenses in the NHL last season and made the playoffs. The poor? The group is full of dead-weight contracts which have obliterated their depth and they got easily bumped in the first round of the playoffs.
Despite the negatives, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better heart nucleus on a team with Anze Kopitar, Drew Doughty and Jonathan Quick. Kopitar is the reigning Selke Trophy winner and Doughty is coming off an excellent 2015-16 season that saw him win the Norris Trophy.
The question remains: can the Kings’ low-scoring, defensive-minded play conceal their issues with depth and lead them to the next deep playoff run?
Stanley Cup +1800
It seems like a distant memory, but LA hoisted the cup at the 2013-14 season. The group then followed that performance up by not making the playoffs the following season and a gloomy first-round ousting the year after.
The crux of the Kings is battle-tested and more than able to hold its own in a Stanley Cup series, however, how the rest of the group fares is difficult to predict. And heaven forbid the very best players on the team struck a scoring slump at the playoffs because relying upon the bottom-six forward for crime is sure to doom LA.. That’s not to say that they can not make a run based on incredible defense along with also a red-hot goalie in Quick.
Western Conference +750
The Western Conference is loaded with teams. The perennially contending Chicago Blackhawks still look like the class of the summit but there are still emerging powerhouses in St. Louis and Anaheim. In order for the Kings to win the Western Conference for the third time in six seasons, they will need to have the ability to beat these three groups.
The Kings combined for a middling 5-4-2 record from the Blackhawks, Blues and Kings last season. In reality, one of those three teams, LA’s only winning record was contrary to the Blackhawks.
Pacific Division +225
Though the Kings have won two Stanley Cups in the previous five seasons, they’ve never won a Pacific Division title. In reality, the only time the Kings ended the regular season atop their division was in 1990-91 when they awakened the Smythe Division. It is very sensible that the Kings can end that drought this year — since they’re co-faves with the Ducks — however they need to avoid another crippling slump.
The Kings squandered a 10-point division lead last season to the Ducks following the team imploded to shut the year out. LA was 30-16-3 entering the all-star break last year and then faltered to a pedestrian 18-18-3 to the remainder of the season.
The biggest reason for this collapse was that their battles within the division, as the Kings went just 10-7-0 contrary to the Pacific following the all-star fracture in comparison with 8-4 before. When you factor in that six of those wins following the break came from Calgary, Vancouver and Edmonton, you’ll be justifiably concerned entering this season.
Point Total OVER/UNDER 97.5
In Darryl Sutter’s three full seasons as head coach of the Kings — we are not including the shortened 2012-13 year — the team has averaged 99 points each season. It is honestly difficult to see that this team regressing too much after posting 102 points last year, but a small drop could be expected contemplating their Travels near last season.
To be able to surpass the 97.5-point mark, some older players will probably need to supply scoring. Goal scoring will especially be required in the wings, as the sole winger to finish with more than 40 points last season was Milan Lucic, who signed with Edmonton this offseason.

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