The LA Kings host the Vancouver Canucks in the final home game of the regular season.
LA Kings (45-25-10)
Here’s how the Kings skated in their loss to Colorado on Saturday:
Tonight's @LAKings Line Rushes –
Byfield – Kopitar – Kempe
Moore – Danault – Arvidsson
Iafallo – Lizotte – Kaliyev
Grundstrom – Kupari – Anderson-Dolan
Gavrikov – Doughty
Durzi – Roy
Walker – Spence
— Zach Dooley (@DooleyLAK) April 9, 2023
It’s possible we’ll see at least one change with the signing of Alex Laferriere over the weekend. The top prospect could provide a jolt to an LA Kings lineup struggling to score.
Vancouver Canucks (36-36-7)
Here’s how the Canucks lined up in their win over the Flames on Saturday:
— Brendan Batchelor (@BatchHockey) April 9, 2023
Here’s how the two teams match up at 5-on-5 per Natural Stat Trick
|Los Angeles Kings||52.1||52.8||52.8||54.1||8.1||0.908||0.989|
The two teams met just over a week ago in a game the Kings won 4-1. LA controlled the shot share in that one with a 55% CF%. Vancouver, however, held the edge in shot quality owning 58% of the expected goals and 55% of the high-danger chances.
|Los Angeles Kings||25.4||75.5|
The Kings’ power play looked better on Saturday, which included them scoring a goal. On Monday, they get to play the worst penalty kill in the NHL this season.
Let’s look at the odds, courtesy of Betstamp.
*Note: the odds below are for sports books offered in New York. Refer to available sports books specific to your state.
**Odds as of 10:30 am ET/7:30 am PT may have changed since the writing of this article.
The Kings are pretty heavy favorites in this one with BetRivers offering the best price at -182. The visiting Canucks are +165 at DraftKings. The total on the game is 6.5 with multiple books offering the Over at -110 while BetRivers has the Under at -106.
LA put forth a strong performance against Colorado over the weekend, despite the loss. If they play like that, it’ll take a dominant game from Thatcher Demko to keep Vancouver in it (he’s done it before). I think the Kings take care of business in their home finale and end this losing streak. I’d take them in Regulation as well (-128 at Caesars).
News & Notes
- We’ll see what type of impact Laferriere makes as the regular season comes to a close. The 21-year-old had 42 points in 34 games with Harvard this season and has picked up a goal in four games since joining the Ontario Reign.
- The Kings are in need of an offensive shake-up of sorts. Over the past ten games, the likes of Phillip Danault, Anze Kopitar, Quinton Byfield, and Trevor Moore have combined for just two goals.
- The Vancouver penalty kill is the worst in the league overall this season. However, since Rick Tocchet took over – and Thatcher Demko returned from injury – it has fared better at 77.5%, good for 23rd in the league.
- This has been true across the board for Vancouver. Since Tocchet was named the head coach, the Canucks are 18-11-4 and their possession metrics are better than their overall season numbers. This is no longer an easy out, especially with how well Demko has played.
- Pheonix Copley started on Saturday, which would suggest Joonas Korpisalo will get the nod on Monday.
- With the recent three-game losing streak, the Kings no longer have any chance at winning the Division or hosting a playoff series as they are seven points behind Vegas and five behind Edmonton with just two games left. LA is also at risk of slipping into a Wild Card position as they’re just two points up on the Seattle Kraken, who have three games left to play this week while LA only has two. Seattle also owns the tiebreaker (Regulation/Overtime Wins) as well. The Kraken are in Arizona on Monday against the Coyotes.
(Main Photo Credit: Harry How/Getty Images)