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The Key Three: Dec. 29

by Rich Hammond / Los Angeles Kings
Three key aspects of the Kings’ 1-0 overtime loss to the Winnipeg Jets...

Is there anyone, in or out of a Kings uniform, who has confidence when the team goes on a power play these days? The Kings are now 2-for-42 with the man advantage in their last 12 games. It’s fair to say that with even a decent power play, the Kings would easily be atop the Pacific Division right now. Instead, they’re chasing, and Thursday’s game showed why. The Kings had a 5-on-3 advantage for 1 minute, 53 seconds, during the second period of a scoreless game. They didn’t score. Yes, Winnipeg failed on its own two-man advantage as well, but the Jets, not the Kings, got two points out of Thursday’s game.

What exactly did Jonathan Bernier do to deserve this. Bernier started
on Dec. 3 and lost 2-1. He stared on Dec. 10 and lost 2-1. He started last night and lost 1-0 in overtime. So, in his last three starts, Bernier has allowed a total of three goals, and stopped 77 of 82 shots, and come away with three losses because of the Kings’ lack of offense. Bernier had a couple bumpy moments early, but also stopped Blake Wheeler’s breakaway attempt eight minutes into the game. What must it be like to be a Kings goalie these days, to know that if you allow one or two goals and play a strong game, you still might lose?


There’s no question that the Kings faced a tough situation. They were
playing their third game in four nights, and playing the second leg of a back-to-back set after a 2:30 a.m. arrival in Winnipeg. To grit out the game, and take home one point against a fast, aggressive Jets team, is nothing to sneeze at, but if the Kings were to get two points, it called for a to player to step up and make a game-changing play. Dustin Penner nearly did, when his deft deflection hit the post, but where were the rest? The defensemen, as a group, didn’t contribute much offense, and as noted, the forwards didn’t score on the power play.
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