Is It Time to Start Worrying About the Los Angeles Kings Missing the Playoffs?

With 32 games remaining, the Los Angeles Kings are not a playoff team.

Not only are the Kings not a playoff team, but they are 12th in the West, five points out of a playoff spot. 

Is it time to worry?

Should anyone ever worry about the Kings?

For the second year in a row, the Kings are sleepwalking through a regular season. In 2013-14, at around the 58-game mark, they began a reign of terror. They closed the regular season 16-6-2, and then won an additional 16 games in the postseason for a second Stanley Cup in three seasons. 

When the Kings won the Cup in 2012 as a No. 8 seed, they were 27-22-12 through 61 games before finishing 13-5-3 and bludgeoning the opposition in a 16-4 postseason run.

Through 50 games this season, the Kings are 21-17-12 and have lost six of seven.

"We’re definitely cutting it close," defenseman Drew Doughty said. "We have not been playing well lately this season. We put ourselves in a hole. We’re out of a playoff spot. We need a lot of wins to get back in there and to climb in the standings."

Those Doughty comments are from the All-Star break; since then, the Kings have lost three of four.

Because of their track record of breaking late like a well-trained thoroughbred, the Kings are at least getting the benefit of the doubt, even after a 4-0 throttling at the hands of the Washington Capitals on Tuesday night.

Are these feelings of confidence justified? Are the Kings just repeating the script that brought them a championship last year? Let's compare last season's team to this one to determine if another turnaround can be expected.


1. The underlying numbers

Here's a look at the Kings through 50 games this season and 58 games last season.

Already there's reason for optimism, as the numbers aren't all that different. The Kings contro...

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