Kings vs. Blue Jackets - 02/16/11 - POSTGAME THOUGHTS & TIDBITS
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02-16-2011, 10:40 PM
Join Date: Oct 2009
GOD DAMN Loktionov is a beast. Without him, there's no way we would be 8-0-2 in our last 10. NO ****ING WAY. The scary thing is, he's still getting better every game. I don't want to put such high expectations on him, but I see a little bit of Datsyuk in him. He's very sneaky, always seems to be in the right place, and is responsible defensively. He needs to stay on this roster for good. In a few years Kopitar-Loktionov-Schenn down the middle is going to be dangerous. Second only to Pittsburgh's centers.
Doughty is playing like the baller he is once again. He's more offensively gifted than most of our forwards. He has 23 points in the last 34 games (55 point pace over 82 games) and 4 goals in the past 7 games! As if that wasn't enough, he's clearly improved the defensive aspect of his game, clearing the slot like a boss. John Stevens is an excellent defensive coach, I think he has a lot to with this. And obviously having mentors like Greene, Mitchell, and Scuderi helps a lot too. The fact that he's playing so well this late in the season tells me his slow start had nothing to do with physical conditioning. If he had conditioning problems you'd think he would show it more this late in the season. Especially since he's in the top 10 ice time leaders in the NHL. I think the first couple months were a wake up call that Doughty really needed, and he has responded very well. Doughty KNOWS he has the potential to be the best defenseman in the league, and now he knows he'll have to WORK to reach that potential. It won't just come to him.
I had my doubts about the Handzus-Kopi-Simmonds line, but it's produced a goal in every game since it was created. Sure it isn't the ideal line but it beats any other top line we've had for a while. We've always thought Kopitar needed speedy wingers but this line's size has been effective. Because of this, I think Penner would look nice on Kopitar's wing. I doubt we make a move before the deadline but maybe a draft day deal? 1st + defensive prospect for Penner? We might need to add, but I don't see many options.
Quick is a stud, plain and simple. If he keeps playing like this, he'll get Vezina consideration. He won't win (Thomas has it pretty much locked up at this point, barring a late season melt-down), but a even a nomination would be great. I never thought I'd say this but the Kings are SET in goal. At this point we have 2 possibilities: 1) Quick proves to be better than Bernier despite the hype and we get to see Quick play like this for years to come, or 2) Bernier lives up to the hype and surpasses Quick, who is already one of the best goalies in the league. In either case, we trade the "loser", probably getting something fairly significant in return, and bring up Martin Jones (who is currently playing great in the AHL as a rookie) to be the back up.
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