LA Kings: Talk Is Cheap…Time To Put Your Money Where Your Mouths Are

LOS ANGELES — Given that the Los Angeles Kings are just 5-6-2 since the Olympic break and have put in mostly poor efforts since that time, one can imagine what an advertisement in the Lost and Found section of the local newspapers might look like:

LOST: Intensity, effort, urgency, enthusiasm. If found, please contact the Los Angeles Kings immediately.

Although their malaise began before the Olympic break, the two-week hiatus killed any momentum the Kings had going into the stretch drive for the playoffs.

“I think it was the break,” head coach Terry Murray lamented. “To me, it’s mental. This is an attitude game at this time of the year. Twenty percent talent, eighty percent attitude, and I think our attitude slipped over the break.”

Murray added that his team is not the only one suffering from this affliction.

“It’s around the league, it’s not just the LA Kings,” he said. “You’re seeing some teams taking a step back from where they were pre-Olympics. As a result, you get into these critical games and you don’t know how to shut’em down.”

Of course, some teams have been hit harder than others by the lag after the Olympics. Nevertheless, the Kings are right up there with those hit the hardest, and, to make matters worse, goaltender Jonathan Quick, who has been the Kings’ best player in many games this season, has been mostly mediocre since the break.

Although Quick represented the United States during the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, he was their third goaltender and got no quality practice time in before jumping right back into the fray with the Kings.

In short, he was rusty upon his return to National Hockey League action and has not returned to top form, despite what his 2.38 goals-against average and .910 save percentage since the Kings returned to action would seem to indicate. ...

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