Thursday Morning Coffee- Kings of What, exactly?


They've gotten kind of lost in all the accolades hurled at Colorado and Phoenix this season, but lately they've been more Colorado than Phoenix, as the Kings have been struggling in a big bad way.  And much like the Avs, it looks like a worn out goaltender might be at the root of the problem.  The Canucks inch closer to wrapping up their post season ticket and the division title with a tilt in LALA land tonight.  More after the jump...

The Kings have at times looked like we thought they would be, a team with a nice mix of size, speed and skill.  A number of excellent youngsters mixed with some veteran leadership, and many figured the Kings would make the post season.  If not for a shutout by Jonathan Bernier the other night, you had to wonder if they'd win another game this season.  They've looked bloody awful lately, and with Jonathan Quick having burnt out before the end of the season, have gone back to their backup to try and stop the bleeding.

The Canucks were full value against the red-hot Coyotes, and look to be getting all the little aspects of their game tightened as they head into the playoffs.  The Canucks have done well against the Kings this season, a team that has really battled them hard the last few seasons.  They've outscored them 9-3 in 3 games, and will look to make it a clean sweep tonight at the Staples Center.  Andrew Raycroft has one of the 3 wins, coming in a shootout win back in October.

Henrik Sedin looks to continue his quest to be the first Canuck to win the NHL's Art Ross Trophy as the league's top scorer.  He also has 6 games to top Pavel Bure's franchise record 110 points.   Leading goalscorer Alexandre Burrows has an outside shot of finishing the season with 40 goals.  That's no April Fools joke, the guy has played his ass off this season, shattering his image as just a pest, but his goal total is above some of the NHL superstars who get more press.  He certainly hasn't shown any signs of slowing down the pace that started when he first got placed on a line with the twins late last season.

I don't want 8th place, you take it...

The way the Colorado Avalanche have been playing lately, you'd swear they have no idea how badly the Sharks collapse every post season.  Yet this team which has been the real surprise of the West this season (sorry, Phoenix has done well, but you take those 12 shootout wins away and that team is struggling to make the playoffs), is now looking exactly like people had predicted, young, lacking confidence, and an easy two points for any one who faces them.  They now find themselves in a position of having to play the team that is trying to track them down on Friday in a game that could decide who gets that 8th spot.  The Calgary Flames, thanks to Mikka Kiprusoff managed to eek out a 2-1 win over the Phoenix Coyotes.  Back to back losses for the desert dogs could have cost them their opportunity at winning the Western Conference.  Theiir reward for this could mean a date with the Detroit Red Wings.  Good luck with that.

Saw a bit on the Twitter this morning saying Gary Bettman has been wooing those who would buy the Coyotes by telling them the league expects a cash influx of 1/2 Billion dollars from a new tv deal and an expansion team in the Toronto area.  Because that's what the NHL needs.  More teams.  And are we really supposed to believe that after a deal where the league basically gave the product away, Bettman has something lined up to actually bring in Millions.  Of real dollars.  Good god.

Speaking of teams pulling out the fail, how about the Montreal Canadiens last night?  Nothing says 'lackluster' like a 2-1 loss to Carolina at home.  Angry Habs fans booed Carey Price, proving once again that for intelligent hockey fans, the followers of Les Habitants can also be the most clueless.  You'd think they were the Washington Capitals or something...

Oh yeah, the Leafs are officially out of the playoffs now.  So I guess that means those bastards from PPP (for clarification's sake, I meant bastards in a nice way.  No seriously.  I don't do April Fools jokes, and with me that word is always tongue in cheek) will be hanging around more.  Actually that's fine with me... all are welcome here.  Except this guy:


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