Defending Cup champion Kings look to right ship over the weekend
By Dan Groob, TiqIQ
As Stanley Cup champions last season, the Los Angeles Kings held the triumphant distinction of being the only team in hockey to win their final game of the season. This season however, things have been quite different for the Kings. Showing a little bit of rust from the lockout layover, the Kings are currently one of only three winless teams remaining in the NHL heading into this weekend.
The upcoming schedule only gets tougher for the Kings, with a divisional rematch of last year’s Western Conference Finals against the Phoenix Coyotes on tap for Saturday, before facing the conference favorite Vancouver Canucks on Monday. So far the Kings have scored a league-low four goals on the season, and they will face the tough test of trying to slip a few biscuits past Mike Smith of Phoenix and whoever appears in net on Sunday out of Vancouver’s two-headed goaltending monster of Cory Schneider and Roberto Luongo.
Possessing one of the most skilled rosters in the NHL, Vancouver has been a big draw across the league this year. According to TiqIQ, Vancouver Canucks Tickets average road price is $132 dollars on the secondary market. This price would indicate the Canucks as one of the more sought-after Canadian teams in US markets, as they figure to be premier contenders again this season.
Although the Kings have yet to win a game this year and were somehow able to topple the top seeded Canucks from the 8 spot last season, they aren’t sneaking up on anybody for a second time. The Kings still remain among the top 3 favorites in the Western Conference, and in some spots, have Stanley Cup odds equal to those of the Canucks at 10:1. With a rapidly growing fan base, interestingly enough; if you want to buy Kings hockey tickets in LA, the average of $133 dollars at home is virtually identical to the average road price of the Canucks. Naturally, tickets for Sunday’s contest between these two teams don’t deviate much from either of these figures, currently checking in at an average price of $135 dollars. One King licking his chops for Monday’s tilt is center Anze Kopitar. After missing the season opener in the final stages of rehabbing a knee sprain sustained in Sweden during the lockout, Kopitar has been held scoreless in the first two games of his return. Last season, Kopitar registered four points in four regular season games against the Canucks, as well as a point in each of the first four playoff games. The Kings’ leading scorer in each of the past five seasons, Kopitar should start to look more comfortable on the ice this weekend and will serve as a sorely needed catalyst for the Kings offense.
Thankfully, the Staples Center has nosebleeds aplenty for the cost-sensitive Kings fan who just wants to enter the building for Monday’s premier faceoff. With a get-in-the-door price of $54 dollars, this Kings/Canucks matchup figures to be one of the best values for Los Angeles hockey fans to witness a top notch game of critical importance in the lockout-shortened season.