The Kings travelled from Boston down to Columbus, seeking a win that would finally end their losing streak. After energetic but rather disorganized loss to the Bruins, the Kings managed to keep pretty much the same energy level but put a little more calm to their game. The Kings killed an early penalty (and when I say early I mean 6 seconds into the game – Simon Gagne went into the box for hooking) and since then started to bring the pucks at the Columbus net. They outshot the Blue Jacket 17-6 in the first, but the period remained scoreless. The 2nd frame evolved in the similar fashion until the Kings lost a face-off in their own end, allowing Prospal to fire the puck, which bounced off a Kings’ skate and then off Jeff Carter‘s stick and behind Quick’s back. At 16:43 of the middle frame it was 1-0 Columbus. Fortunately though, the Kings didn’t back off and instead kept the pressure on. At 4:33 of the third period they tied the game when Davis Drewiske scored his first goal of the season. At 8:12 the Kings got the lead with a goal from Dustin Brown, assisted by Doughty and Gagne. It was 2-1 Kings and luckily the score didn’t change ’till the end of the game. The Kings won!

Simon had a really good game. Despite starting the game with a penalty and then being on the ice for the Columbus goal, he was on the ice for both Kings goals, assisting on the game winner. Besides plus-1 rating he had 3 shots on goal, 1 attempt blocked and 2 hits.

Categories: Simon

The Kings have started their 4 game road trip on the ice of the current Stanley Cup Champions, the Boston Bruins. It was their first game since the coaching change but given the little time to adjust anything not much change has been expected. Nevertheless, the Kings seemed to have much more energy and showed much more emotion than in the previous game against Dallas. On the other hand though, the amount of emotion probably stood in their way of creating sustained pressure or at least a sustained control of the puck. Even though they had a great chance early on, when Gagne fed Penner with a beautiful set up (on which Penner missed an open net), they kept creating turnovers and taking bad penalties. Thus it happened the Bruins had a 1-0 lead after the first period. In the 2nd period the Kings cut down their penalty minutes to none and were given three power play opportunities (including 30 seconds of 5 on 3) but they still failed to score – only hitting the post twice. Instead, at 7:43 of the second period the Bruins jumped off to a two goal lead with a goal from Marchand right from the face-off circle to Quick’s right. In the third period the Kings kept pummeling Rask with pucks yet none went in. Again, it was Boston who managed to score and again from a stick of Marchand who made it 3-0 at 5:35 of the third period. As I said in the beginning of the recap, it was visible the Kings wanted to win this one but their determination seemed to tie down their hands rather than setting their offense loose. They did outshot the Bruins 41 to 22 (20 to 3 in the third) but the amount of scoring chances was rather equal and the most important stat – goals, favored the Boston team.

Yes, Simon failed to score in past 10 games. That definitely isn’t flattering but actually watching his perfomance gives you hope he will break out of this shell soon. He skated on the first line with Kopitar and Penner  and was playing really well. Speed, energy, shots (3 at the net, 1 blocked and 1 missed) and solid defensive play. He wasn’t on the ice for any of the Bruins goals, thus remaining even in the +/- stat.

Categories: Simon

The Kings lost to the Dallas Stars 2-1, extending their losing streak to four games. Needless to say they played poorly. Since the start ’till the end of the game they only showed sparks of energy but those were really limited. It definitely didn’t feel like watching an NHL team that was supposed to be a Cup contender. After comitting way too many penalties in the first period they headed to the locker room for the 1st intermission being down 1-0. They did tie the game in the middle of the 2nd period with a short handed goal from Brad Richardson (who was among the few showing some energy) but only 3 minutes later Travor Daley made it 2-1 Stars. The score hasn’t changed ’till the final horn, nor did the urgency in the Kings’ perfomance.

Simon seemed to get himself the most scoring chances, he failed to score on any nevertheless. Thus extending his goal less streak to 10 games. He was credited with 4 shots on goal, 2 attempts blocked and he also blocked two shots. Though he was minus-1 and had one give away.

As you all probably know by now, the LA Kings have relieved Kings coach Terry Murray of his duties and John Stevens took his job as an interim head choach of the team.

Categories: Simon

First, I need to say I’m sorry for late updates or lack thereof. My school responsibilities are beginning to haunt me so I’m in a little bit of shortage of time. Therefore, to summarize what happened in the last two Kings games, I will be very brief. The Kings dropped to the dead last position in the league in scoring and why is that has been evident in the recent Kings performances (not just recent though, to be quite honest). As the title suggests – offensive struggle all around. The secondary scoring or goals from the D-men is practically non-existent and guys who have been scoring for the Kings are either hurt (hello, Mike) or their gun powder got wet – Kopitar hasn’t scored in his last 7 games, Gagne in his last 9. Justin Williams did score against Anaheim but prior to that he had a 17-game goal-less streak. I won’t be pointing fingers at anyone because this is not why I am here. Now to Gagne…

As I said, Simon hasn’t lit the lamp in 9 games. Ouch. This isn’t really nice stat but with that said it doesn’t mean Simon hasn’t been trying or working hard. In the last two games he fired the puck 11 times, 5 times it went at the net, 4 times his shot was blocked and he missed the net twice. Hopefully, some pucks will go in soon. He remained even in the +/- statistic.

Categories: Simon

The Kings hosted the Montreal Canadiens on yesterday afternoon. They started off really well, creating chances, not allowing the Canadiens to do much in the first period. The Kings outshot them 14-5, partially thanks to three powerplays (including 30 seconds of 5 on 3), but they couldn’t capitalize on any, which turned out to be costly in the end. At 17:10 Dustin Brown took a bad penalty which resulted in a lone 1st period Habs power play on which they unfortunately scored. Plekanec made it 1-0 at 18:39 of the first. In the second period the Kings play changed. Not to better, but to worse. The Canadiens took control for most of the period, outshooting the Kings 13-7. They also added another goal. Kostitsyn scored at 10:48. A minute later the Kings found themselves on a power play again and another minute later they finally squeezed one behind Price. From then on, they seemed to pick up their game. Unfortunately though, thanks to commiting 3 penalties in the third, getting only 6 pucks at the Montreal net and also some bad (non) calls from the officials the game ended with a 2-1 score and a Kings loss.

Because of missing Mike Richards in the line-up, Simon was reunited with Anze Kopitar on the first line. This time he played there with Dustin Brown. Gagne did really well, collecting 4 shots on net and one missed shot. He was even in the +/- but it seems he’s been getting the short end of things recently as he couldn’t tip the puck in an open net because of having his stick lifted up by a Montreal D-man in the last second or hitting the post early into the third period. Hopefully, things will turn around for Simon soon.

Categories: Simon

The Kings played the Florida Panthers last night and it was the first of two meetings between the teams in the season (the Kings will play the Panthers in Florida on Feb 9). Even though the Florida’s coach might tell you a different story, the Kings started off well. They got a 1-0 lead quickly when Jack Johnson fired the puck at the net and it deflected off a Florida d-man into the goal at 1:35 of the first period. The game was pretty much even for the most part of the first period. In the middle frame the Kings stepped back a bit and the Panthers seemed to control the play. That was also caused by a big amount of penalties the Kings took. Five minor penalties and one major for fighting. Panthers were called twice for minor penalty and once for major. At 14:13 the Kings grabbed a two goal lead with a PP goal from Dustin Brown but the Panthers cut it back to one goal only 2:20 minutes later at even strength. Towards the end of the period Sean Bergenheim hit Mike Richards, knocking him with his shoulder into the head. Shortly after Richards retaliated which resulted in a 2+2 penalty for him. He spent the rest of the period in the box and never returned to the game because of an upper-body injury (as a result of the Bergenheim hit). Early into the game the Kings have also lost Willie Mitchell, who left the game with a lower-body injury. Despite having to kill many penalties (including over a minute long 5 on 3) and being a D-man short, being outshot 16-7 in the period, the Kings only allowed one goal, for which they should mostly thank a spectacular Jonathan Quick. While the 2nd period was a penalty fest, there was nothing called in the third period as well as there were no more goals scored. Thus the Kings kept their 2-1 lead and won the game.

As I reported on Twitter, Simon played his 750th NHL career game. He played well, with energy and made some beautiful passes and created great chances but the rather good performance didn’t really transfer to the stats. He was minus-1 in the game, without any points or shots on goal. He only had one hit.

Given the injuries to Mike Richards and Willie Mitchell there are expected some line changes. As the practice suggests and Rich Hammond reports, Gagne should move up to the 1st line again where he’ll skate with Kopitar and Brown. How the rest of the line-up will most likely look like you can check here.

Categories: Simon