The Los Angeles Kings were stuck in a week and a half slump that resulted in dropping 5 games in a row and falling even further behind cross town rival the Anaheim Ducks. No one could have seen this losing streak coming as the Kings had just pulled off a 6 game winning streak in early December. The Kings were only a few points behind the Ducks at the time and ahead of the San Jose Sharks in the Pacific Division. Jump to today and the Kings sit in 3rd in the Pacific and 6th in the Western Conference. The main issue with this Kings team during that losing streak was their inability to score. During their 6 game winning streak the Kings outscored their opponents 23 to 7 and on their losing streak they were outscored 17 to 6. Let us take a look back at this losing streak for the Kings.
The Kings were riding high in early December, but the wheels came off before the Christmas break. Every team in the NHL has a weakness and the one for the Kings was their inability to come back after falling behind in any game. The Kings just don’t have that offensive firepower to score more than 3 goals a game.
LA ranks in the bottom half of the league in scoring with 2.5 goals per game. This losing streak was surprising as they dropped games against teams in the bottom half of the Western Conference. The Kings just looked lost at times on the rink and could not produce any concrete opportunities. Everything went wrong during this losing streak as backup goaltenders Ben Scrivens and Martin Jones struggled after playing so well the previous month.
The Kings ended their losing streak with a 3 to 1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks. The Kings continually put shots on net and Jonathan Quick had a masterful performance in his first game back in almost 2 months. The Kings have the next 3 games at home before they go on their longest road trip of the season. LA has fallen a bit far behind the leaders in the Western Conference, but with the return of Quick they could climb back up the standings in the coming weeks. Darryl Sutter must stay on his players if they want to avoid another losing streak. The Kings may want to look to add another offensive weapon as 2.5 goals per game is not going to cut it come playoff time. The Kings will look to make it 2 wins in a row as they face off against the Minnesota Wild tonight.