Prediction Panel: Jan. 28 Kings vs. Canucks
When the Kings took out the Sedins and the Canucks in a round one matchup in the playoffs last season, the Kings announced their presence with authority and put the rest of the league on notice for the rest of the playoffs.
Now the 2013 season is underway, and the Kings and Canucks will butt heads for the first time. L.A. will attempt to parlay their success from Sunday with a solid 60 minutes again against Vancouver.
Not only that, but other scorers will finally find their touch. Brown and Richards should find the back of the net, and Quick should be his usual self. (Clifford should continue his point streak.)
But the Canucks have circled this game since exiting the playoffs last season. The two-time President's Trophy winners are no pushovers. They are deadly and are always a force to be reckoned with. I think the sheer talent of the 'Nucks coupled with their burning motivation to punish the Kings will be the difference this game.
The final score: Canucks 3, Kings 2 in a shootout (Clifford will score in the shootout, but the Sedins will confound a tired Quick).
How did everyone else pick? Let's take a look...
Surly Jacob from Surly And Scribe
Score: Canucks 3, Kings 2
Reason: Mitchell will come back and the D will be out of sync. A little too cocky after one good win, the Kings will lose their 4th game because 4 is a stupid number. This is the game that turns the tables and makes the team angry. 5-game winning streak follows.
Perfect picks: 1
Paul Ambruster from Kings News Daily
Score: Kings 1, Canucks 0 in overtime
Reason: Because Quick is > than Schneider.
Reed Kaufman from Crowned Royal
Score: Kings 2, Canucks 1
Reason: Ick. Vancouver. This one is a goaltending duel with the more experienced American netminder coming out on top. Also the Sedins still have huge heads and beady eyes.
Jesse Cohen from All The Kings Men
Score: Kings 4, Canucks 1
The Kings win and the Kings win big. The Canucks are a paper tiger and the Kings will start shaking off the Cup hangover and win in convincing fashion.
Andros from LA Kings Fight Night
Score: Kings 2, Canucks 0
Reason: The first period will be a smash fest, an introduction of characters in this earth-moving opera on ice. Second period; plot complication. The Kings will take questionable penalties, but not as many as those in Edmonton. Third period; resolution: I can see a short-hander by either Kopi or Richards, followed by an empty netter from Clifford (he's on fire, ya know).
Hipcheck from Lets Go Kings
Score: Canucks 5, Kings 2
Reason: Maybe the first game for Jon Bernier on the season and the same reasons that have the Yotes ready to play on saturday has the Nucks geared up for bloodlust as well. Too much Canuck for a Kings team that is lacking confidence and cohesion.
Ryan from Make Way For The Kings
Score: Kings 3, Canucks 1
Reason: After last game, the Kings seem to find a way to score and being back on home ice without any pre-game ceremony won't serve as a distraction unlike the Chicago game. Jonathan Quick won't be perfect but he'll let in fewer goals than in Phoenix as the Kings take advantage of a tired Vancouver team who just played (and lost) last night.
The Royal Half from The Royal Half
Score: Kings 8, Canucks 0
Reason: Cause Luuuuuuooooooongo.
Robert from Jewels From The Crown
Score: Kings 3, Canucks 2
Reason: Canucks are suffering from some sloppy goaltending and are really missing Ryan Kesler. If the Kings can stay out of the box, they should walk away with a W.
Neisy from Jewels From The Crown
Score: Canucks 4, Kings 2
Reason: Canucks have gotten it together a bit more quickly than LAK. Kopitar is improving but still not 100%; until he is, they are in trouble.
Jon Gillette from Kings News Daily
Score: Canucks 4, Kings 2
Reason: Just to piss us off further. Yes, the good ol' days… Enjoy the "free" ring though!