BT’s 10 Bold 2010-’11 NHL Predictions: The Los Angeles Kings

Last year the Kings were one of the biggest surprises in the league, but with hindsight being 20/20, should we have been surprised?

With a ton of young talent, the Kings had been building to burst on to the scene for a few years now. Drew Doughty emerged as a candidate to be dubbed the "prototypical defenseman" of this generation. His mobility, high-end offensive ability, instincts, and physical play propelled him into Norris Trophy contention.

Anze Kopitar exploded onto the scene with his best season to date in his brief NHL career. While the explosiveness may have calmed a little bit as the season wore on (fewer multi-point games), the consistency never left Kopitar as he finished with career highs across the board.

The Kings were also able to draw upon a mix of youth, talent, and experience up front. The defense was well balanced, possessing enough daring undertones to go for it offensively but enough defensive reliability not to get burned, and in net Jonathan Quick was certainly solid when called upon.

With all of that considered, the Kings were still a surprise. No one saw what they did coming as all eyes were drawn to Vancouver, Chicago, and San Jose in the Western Conference.

L.A. will have a bunch of eyes on them this year, and they'll be out to make their mark in the post-season and crown new royalty for West Coast hockey. With that being said, here are 10 bold predictions for the Kings in 2010-'11:


1) Justin Williams plays 70 games and scores 20 goals

The scoring isn't the surprising part here; it's the staying healthy. Williams has failed to play more than 50 games in each of the past three seasons and has had to endure a fairly eclectic collection of injuries throughout his career (torn ACL, an achilles' injury, a broken hand and a broken leg). The thing to keep in mind here is that when he plays, he scores: He's had two 30-goal seasons an...

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