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The big difference this season.....

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01-01-2006, 12:14 PM
  #1
THEKingsFanInRI
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The big difference this season.....

.....is that the Kings more often than not (the Phoenix game last Thursday being a rare exception) they are winning games they usually lose.
Take last night (12-31) for example. Didn't you just have a feeling that Dallas would tie or even win that game? I sure did. Same with the SJ game on 12-28. I wasn't convinced about that game until it was literally over, given the Sharks' recent history against us (Who could ever forget the last pre-lockout game; blowing a 2-goal lead with :30 left). Even the shootout win where JR scored the illegal goal felt like a stolen win.
The Kings, for as long as I have been a fan (when the Kings were in the Norris Division, Coach Bob Berry was experimenting with a line of Marcel Dionne, Dave Taylor and Charlie Simmer and Wayne Gretzky called Indianapolis home) have always found ways to steal defeat from the jaws of victory, but this season has a much different feel to it.
This team is certainly making their push to the upper echelon of the NHL. I don't think you are going to see the Kings win the 2006 Stanley Cup, but I see 07 or 08 as a realistic period of time for them to seriously contend. If they could swing some kind of deal for a bona fide #1 goalie a la the Hrudey deal you could make a case for them making a serious push this year.
I believe in the defense as it is. Sure, you would like to be able to add to the blueline, but a big-time G would go a long way to raising the level of play from the D-men. Anybody who watched Mathieu Garon fade down the stretch in Manchester last year knows why I am wary, but I hope that that was an isolated case. Overall, we have to be happy with the direction the team is taking as we head into 2006.

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01-01-2006, 12:47 PM
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WAY before they need a "#1 goalie" --- they need a legitimate shot from the point.

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01-01-2006, 12:52 PM
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Kearney
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strange day to start a Garon-doubting thread.

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01-01-2006, 01:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kearney
strange day to start a Garon-doubting thread.

yeah no kidding.

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01-01-2006, 01:43 PM
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As much as I would like to agree with you on this it is very hard when I have seen on several occasions where the Kings should have had at least one point they ended up with squat. Here are just a few examples.

Game 1 against Dallas: Have a four goal lead only to lose the game with only 4min 46sec left in the game.

Game 9 against Calgary: Tied at 2 going into the third. Looks like the game is headed to OT. Give up game winning goal with 30sec left in regulation.

Game 11 against San Jose: Tied at 4 here is another game where OT looks inevitable. Sharks win with only 4 seconds left in regulation.

These are just the examples that I can remember where if the Kings played defense for just a couple more minutes (in one instance just a few more seconds) the team would have come out with at least 1 if not the potential for 2 more points. If the Kings were just able to get these few games to OT their lead in the Pacific would be 6 points instead of 3. I am glad they are doing a little better at this but they definitely have room for improvement.

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01-01-2006, 01:55 PM
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guzmania
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I have had the same feeling about the Kings performances this year. It is a major shift to not let these points slip away after hard work. When we got down to a minute left, and I felt they could only score once more in regulation, I was relieved that we were getting a point at least. If we made it to the shootout I thought we'd get 2 pts. There has been a character shift on the team this year. These guys want to win and are unhappy about losing. It is clear most of these guys like each other and are pro-active. We've had some bad luck recently with injuries but the attitude as a team is still very positive. 5 of 6 pts. on the roadtrip is huge. The game here on Monday is huge.

If anything, the penalties are stifling this positivity. That's why we let Dallas back into the game. Garon was lights out once again last night. I thought he had a good chance for the shut out. He's mentally very tough. He's the best goalie we've had since Rogie. Taylor's best aquisition, although the trades for Gleason and Avery and free agents Demitra and Conroy are also up there. Matt will have the longest lasting effect on the team. Norstrom and Visnovsky should be very happy their gaffs didn't mar a big league performance by our young goaltender. Contributions must continue to be consistent. Special teams are the only substandard part of the game these guys are playing. I'm having fun watching this team. A great 6 months. Especially when you consider what we were rooting for last year at this time.


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01-01-2006, 04:45 PM
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Osprey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KingsFanInRI
.....is that the Kings more often than not (the Phoenix game last Thursday being a rare exception) they are winning games they usually lose.

...but a big-time G would go a long way to raising the level of play from the D-men.
I don't think you're appreciating the single greatest reason why the Kings are winning games that they usually lose: goaltending. Perhaps Garon isn't the team's long-time savior, but he has more than enough potential to be and I see no reason to worry until he falters.


Last edited by Osprey: 01-01-2006 at 04:57 PM.
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Old
01-01-2006, 06:01 PM
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Here i'll give you the answer to this seasons turn around: We dont have 800+ injuries; We were amazingly young last time and now the youngsters are older

That is the basic and formost reason before all the stuff you guys said. Obviously goaltending has been big too but thats the two prevailing reasons

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Old
01-01-2006, 11:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Osprey
I don't think you're appreciating the single greatest reason why the Kings are winning games that they usually lose: goaltending. Perhaps Garon isn't the team's long-time savior, but he has more than enough potential to be and I see no reason to worry until he falters.
Holy crap, I find myself in complete agreement with you yet again...

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Old
01-02-2006, 11:52 AM
  #10
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I believe in garon

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Old
01-02-2006, 08:49 PM
  #11
THEKingsFanInRI
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My lack of faith in Mathieu Garon is borne strictly from watching him in the Calder Cup playoffs last year. I was at Game 3 in Providence and he looked like Gary Laskoski on crack . He was awful; maybe I just have this internal fear that he will do the same this year once April rolls around. I mean, how can I bash a guy who is 9 games over .500 and a sub-3.00 GAA. I don't think I was bashing him per se, I just made a bad choice of words in voicing my fear.

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