With a 4-0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes at Staples Center tonight the Los Angeles Kings clinched a playoff spot. In what was the 1500th win in franchise history the Kings decimated the Coyotes limb by limb and took full advantage of a Phoenix team that is reeling during the stretch run.
First Star: Jonathan Quick – 17 Saves
Second Star: Jeff Carter – 1 Goal, 1 Assist
Third Star: Alec Martinez – 2 Assists
Based on where we are in the season it would seem like the Kings have all but locked up the third spot in the Pacific Division, which will pit them against either the San Jose Sharks or the Anaheim Ducks in the first round. As of right now the Kings will face the Sharks.
The Kings have taken down the Sharks three times this season, despite the fact that the Sharks have outperformed the Kings for the majority of the season. The Kings only loss in the series this year was on November 27th when the Kings fell to the Sharks in a shoutout. The good news for the Kings is that shootouts don’t exist in the playoffs.
We should also mention the fact that the Kings are 14-4 since the Winter Olympic break and are one of the hottest teams in the NHL. We also know that in the Stanley Cup Playoffs it’s all about getting hot at the right time. The Kings are most certainly getting hot at the right time. With only 5 games remaining in the regular season the Kings need to sustain this current play and keep it going in the playoffs. The Western Conference is no joke and if the Kings get cold, even for an instance, it could be a long summer for the Royal Half.