Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Preseason Review - Halfway Through

Here's a halfway through preseason review. With eight total games on the schedule for the preseason, the Kings have now played five. I realize the math is a little off, and we're a bit further than halfway through, but "Preseason Review - 5/8th way Through" didn't have quite the same ring to it. Anyway, here's how the games have gone so far:

Kings 2 - Coyotes 4
Kings Scorers: Wayne Simmonds (2)
Coyotes Scorers: J. Vandermeer (1), V. Fiddler (1), J. Hoggan (1), D. Spina (1)
Recap - With a few notable exceptions, the Kings played a reserve squad in this game, fielding a number of players looking to make an impact on the Kings this season. Simmonds made a big statement, coming on the back of a solid if unspectacular rookie season, he demonstrated an increasing ability to put the puck in the net. This developing ability can only be a boon to the Kings offensive firepower if he's able to build on it going forward.

Coyotes 3 - Kings 4
Kings Scorers: Jack Johnson (2), Teddy Purcell (1), Justin Williams (1)
Coyotes Scorers: M. Boedker (1), K. Yandle (1), P. Mueller (1)
Recap - A good result. The first good result of the preseason happened on the same day as the first loss. In an interesting scheduling decision, the Coyotes and Kings scheduled two matches on the same day. In this match the Kings started many of the players expected to make the team and be impact players, and just as in the previous game, somebody stepped up. Jack Johnson netted two goals, including the game-winner, and an assist. The three point game is a good total for anyone, let alone the fact that he's a defender. Johnson has spent the previous two seasons working on fitting into the roster, and focusing on his defensive game. While obviously he can't let up on the defense, this game may be a sign that he's ready to start moving forward and adding the offensive potential that made him a huge prospect to his game. Only time will tell.

Sharks 2 - Kings 1 (SO)
Kings Scorers: Dustin Brown (1)
Sharks Scorers: B. Ferriero (1)
Recap - I admit I missed this game. From the scorecard it looks to have been a tightly fought battle, and the fact that the Kings held the Sharks to only one goal is a good sign. Of course the fact that they were only able to put one goal past rookie Sharks keeper Greiss is not the most uplifting of signs...

Ducks 1 - Kings 4
Kings Scorers: Brayden Schenn (2), Ryan Smyth (1), Anze Kopitar (1)
Ducks Scorers: Saku Koivu (1)
Recap - It's always good to get a result against the hated cross-town rival Ducks. In addition to the satisfaction of getting one over (resoundingly I might add) on the Ducks, Brayden Schenn couldn't have picked a better time to get started scoring. With the first set of cuts coming shortly after this game, it's entirely possible that without his offensive outburst he would have been sent back to juniors early. However, the outburst came, and Schenn stuck with the team. Will it be for the long-term? I doubt it, but potting four goals against Jonas Hiller is always satisfying, even in the pre-season. A strong performance by Jonathan Bernier was only the topper to an impressive win. Here's hoping it starts a pattern heading into the regular season.

Islanders 2 - Kings 4
Kings Scorers: Teddy Purcell (1), Wayne Simmonds (2), Drew Doughty (1)
Islanders Scorers: A. Sutton (1), J. Bailey (1)
Recap - Simmonds is the hero again. In five games, Simmonds has netted four goals, an excellent start for a player expected to increase his totals from the 9G, 14A, 23P of last season. If the preseason so far is any predictions, there's no doubt Simmonds will top those numbers, and may make the substantial step forward that the Kings will need if they are looking to make the playoffs this season. Jonathan Quick had what appears to be a solid, if unspectacular, game in goal, and is off to a good start this preseason.

The one thing that can be said so far, is that the Kings have not had a lot of players under-performing this pre-season. With any luck, they will be able to keep this string of strong play going into the regular season when it debuts on October 3rd.

Upcoming Preseason Games:
September 23rd, 2009 - Kings v. Avalanche
September 26th, 2009 - Avalanche v. Kings
September 27th, 2009 - Kings v. Ducks

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You are so knowledgeable! I am rooting for the Kings to do something good this season!