LA Kings enter playoffs with determined young players


Sabrina Robertson

The Los Angeles Kings play their first playoff game of the season on April 17 against the Edmonton Oilers.

Sabrina Robertson

The National Hockey League (NHL) regular season has come to an end and the playoffs begin April 17. The Los Angeles Kings finished third in the Pacific division and will go head to head against the Edmonton Oilers in the first round tonight in Edmonton. 

The four divisions in the NHL are Atlantic, Metropolitan, Central and Pacific. The first team to four wins within seven games moves on. Since winning their second Stanley Cup eight years ago, the Kings have either not qualified for the playoffs or were eliminated in the first round.

Leading up to the playoffs, the Kings were plagued with injuries. Defenceman Mikey Anderson made his return from the injured list, which raised the spirits of both Kings players and fans. The Kings are still missing two top forwards who are crucial to the lineup. Kevin Fiala has been out with a lower body injury and Gabe Vilardi has been out with an upper body injury. So far, it looks like they will both miss some of the first round.

The Oilers also have a stacked roster. Their captain and forward Conner McDavid is the best player in the league and one of the best in history. Along with forward Leon Draisaitl, the Oilers are a real force to be reckoned with. However, the Oilers are known for fizzling out in the first or second round after having an amazing regular season. 

Last season, the Kings faced off against the Oilers and took them to seven games before getting eliminated. During this regular season, the Kings and Oilers faced off four times and the Kings won two games and lost the other two. Having an even record against them doesn’t mean the Kings and Oilers are equal. The Oilers led the NHL in goals and are second in the Pacific Division.

The Kings will have to make hard decisions in their lineups like who to start in goal and what to do with absent players. This year has gone surprisingly well for the Kings as the team has had issues with goaltending and recently traded veteran goalie Jonathan Quick

The Kings aren’t expected to win the Stanley Cup but I have hope that they will be able to at least show off their new and improved team.