There was a lot of pressure on the Los Angeles Kings heading into the 2013 NHL season after winning the Stanley Cup last year. The Kings started terribly but it looks like the team has turned a corner in winning four of their last five games. Los Angeles may not be the same team that they were last year but it appears that the team is starting to play a lot better.
The biggest reason for that, in my opinion, is the fact that Jonathan Bernier has started in goal for three of the last five games for the Kings instead of Jonathan Quick. Bernier has given just three goals over those three games–all of which have been wins for Los Angeles. There must be something to that because while Quick has been better himself, the team is sticking with more of Bernier. Every team that wants to do anything in the playoffs knows that they need a solid goalie to carry them to a championship. This could be the year that Bernier is that goalie in Los Angeles instead of Quick.
It is also worth pointing out that the Kings will play 13 of their next 16 games at home which, should increase the chances of Los Angeles going on a run over the next month. The play of Bernier along with consistent scoring by Jeff Carter and Mike Richards has changed the team’s fortunes in recent weeks. It is up to the Kings now to keep this momentum going during their long home stand.