Los Angeles Kings 2023-24 season preview and predictions

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Los Angeles Kings season preview

When looking at overall team depth, the Los Angeles Kings are right up there with the rest of the league. They will undoubtedly be a playoff team, and I am confident they will give the Edmonton Oilers and Vegas Golden Knights a run for the Pacific Division title. Adding Pierre-Luc Dubois really solidified their strength in the middle of the ice. The Kings are going to be a very difficult team to play against. 

 

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Offense

This group is four lines deep with offensive firepower. The Kings finished in the top 10 last season in creating high-danger chances at even strength per 60 minutes (13.03), and they had the fourth-best power play percentage in the NHL (25.3%). In my opinion, they got even stronger offensively by adding Dubois. Between Dubois, Anze Kopitar, Adrian Kempe, Kevin Fiala, Viktor Arvidsson, and Phillip Danault, this team won’t have any issues scoring goals. 

They’re very strong at 5-on-5, and if their power play clicks like it did in the 2022-23 season, the Kings can make a postseason run. 

Defense

Team defense is arguably the Kings’ biggest strength. They might not have the blue line they did when they won two Stanley Cups in three years, but this group knows how to play in their own end. They finished second in multiple categories, like expected goals against per 60 at even strength (2.53) and high-danger chances against per 60 (11.17) in all situations. 

Their blue line is highlighted by Drew Doughty, who has been a top defenseman in the league for north of a decade, but the Kings have some other secret weapons like Mikey Anderson and Vladislav Gavrikov on the back end. They should be a strong defending team once again. 

Goaltending

Goaltending was a bit of an issue for Los Angeles in the 2022-23 season, but this year they are rocking with a tandem that is made up of Pheonix Copley and veteran Cam Talbot. This area will certainly be a question mark once again for the Kings, but they are confident that this duo can be a solid one-two punch. Copley earned 24 wins last season, skating to a .903 save percentage, while Talbot had 17 wins, but his save percentage wasn’t as strong at .898 during his time as an Ottawa Senator. Copley should be their #1 guy, but they will compete against one another for time in the blue paint. 

Player To Watch – F Pierre-Luc Dubois

This choice seems a bit obvious, but with Dubois coming off of a career year in Winnipeg with 63 points, I think he will absolutely pop off this season in his debut as a member of the Kings. Dubois has been a bit misunderstood early on in his NHL career, but now that he has a fresh start in a place he wants to be in, it will do wonders for his confidence. I think PLD has a 30-goal season in him. 

Outlook

I have zero doubt that the Kings finish in a top-three seed in the division and, depending on how their goaltending performs, this team could be a sneaky Stanley Cup contender.