While the slowest month of hockey is upon us, this may be a good time debate about the upcoming season for the Los Angeles Kings. This will hopefully spark conversations and get you all excited for the 2012-2013 season.
Who will be the leading goal scorer for the Kings? I’m certain many of you will agree, but I will have to pick Anze Kopitar. However, I feel that not only will he score the most goals for the team, but he will hit the 40 goal mark this year. With the depth of the Kings becoming much better, Kopitar and the 1st line will have greater mismatches, leading to more goals for #11.
Who will be the leading point scorer for the Kings? If Kopitar gets 40+ goals, then obviously I pick him again. By consistently getting 75+ points every season and playing on a stronger Kings team, there is no question he can put up 90+ points.
Who will be the surprise player for the Kings? After a strong effort last season and in the post season, Dwight King will continue to impress. While being overshadowed by the top players, King had a strong season by collecting 14 points in 27 games. He also was able to earn 8 points in 20 games in the playoffs. This season King may get a bigger role and become much more of a factor for the Kings.
Which rookie will make the biggest impact for the Kings? With some solid prospects coming into the Kings system this year, the one I am most looking forward to seeing is Tyler Toffoli. He lit up the OHL by grabbing 100 points in 65 games and he looks ready to make the jump into the NHL. With a good impression at training camp, there is no doubt he could jump into a 3rd line role with the team.
Which player is most likely to get traded? Jonathan Bernier is the most likely to be traded as he has actually demanded for a trade, but is there anyone else? With the Kings forward prospects looking better, there is a chance that a depth move is made. This makes someone like Brad Richardson or Colin Fraser available for trade as well.
Where will the Kings finish at the end of the regular season? There is no doubt the Kings can finish at first in the Pacific, first in the West, and possibly earn the President’s Trophy. If they continue to click, and younger players continue to step up, then the Kings will have a great season.
Please feel free to comment on what you think will happen, or follow me on twitter @TonyMoreno20 for more discussions!