Thursday, April 15, 2010

2009-2010 Regular Season Grades: Forwards (Kings)

by Anne

Both teams' goaltenders will be in a post together tomorrow because just writing a post about how great Ryan Miller is is a little overdone these days.

Today I bring you the Kings' forwards:

#11 Anze Kopitar
82gm, 34G, 47A, +6, 21:47

Kopi came out of the gates a-blazin' but quickly cooled off. For a brief time he lead the league in scoring but that didn't last once Ryan Smyth and/or Justin Williams were injured. He was still awesome most of the time.
Grade: A-

#14 Justin Williams
49gm, 10G, 19A, +3, 16:22

Big Willy Style was brought in for some veteran Cup-winning experience. When he was in the line-up, it was grand. When he wasn't, well, Kopi struggled without him and Smyttie. He only played half the season and has previously been far  more offensively productive.
Grade: B-

#15 Brad Richardson
81gm, 11G, 16A, +1, 12:50

RichardFail was not as bad as his nickname might suggest, I suppose. He was better than I anticipated he'd be. I was shocked to learn he played 81 games to be honest. He was AW-FUL for the first two months of the season, but the Christmas spirit clearly hit him and from December on, he was much better.
Grade: B+

#17 Wayne Simmonds
78gm, 16G, 24A, +22, 14:28

Wayne Simmonds rocks. Plain and simple. He does it all. He scores at a 3rd liner's rate, plays in a defensively responsible way, fights and all does it with a goofy look on his face. I'd love to be a fly on the wall in the house he shares with Doughty
Grade: A

#23 Dustin Brown
82gm, 24G, 32A, -6, 19:15

A typical Brownie season but with slightly better +/-. He had his usual 3563098 hits and played decently over all. He's consistent and that's what you need from a captain.
Grade: B

 #24 Alexander Frolov
81gm, 19G, 32A, -1, 18:26

Someone recently referred to Fro as the player who invented streaky play. He was really bad at the beginning of the season but certainly turned things around as time went on. He has that typically Russian way of playing "teammates, what teammtes? Look how FAST I am!" that, I'm sure drove Terry Murray insane. Things could've been worse, but things have certainly been better (offensively anyway).

 #26 Michal Handzus
81gm, 20G, 22A, +4, 18:18

Zus is a man of few words and much defensive responsibility. There are no frills to his game. He does his job and he does it well.
Grade: A-

 #28 Jarret Stoll
73gm, 16G, 31A, +13, 17:25

He and Simmer are fantastic linemates. This season Stolly's power play prowess showed more in his set-up ability for guys like Doughty and Kopitar. He had the highest % of faceoff wins of any player that took more than 20 faceoffs (he took over 1100 and 3 players took 10-20 and had higher %).
Grade: B+

#41 Raitis Ivanans
61gm, 0G, 0A, -8, 4:53

Hey, he had 136 PIM! And he gets to play in game one tonight. He's pretty much useless.

Grade: D

#63 Scott Parse
59gm, 11G, 13A, +13, 10:31

In his rookie season, Scooter has been reliable. Parse-Stoll-Simmonds is a fun checking line. They play pretty well together, as is evidenced by their strong +/- and solid point production. I loves me some checking line players. Hopefully he'll stick with it and continue to be solid in years to come.
 Grade: B

 #94 Ryan Smyth
67gm 22G, 31A, +8, 19:40

Smyttie has been a great linemate for Kopitar. It was apparent in Kopi's game when he was not there. When he wasn't there, and when Williams wasn't there either, Kopi tried to do too much and accomplished much less than he did when those two, especially Smyth, were out there. He was the dynamic winger that the Kings had been looking for the past few seasons.
 Grade: B+

The rest:

#22 Jeff Halpern
16gm, 0G, 2A, -1, 10:40

Ummm... whatevs.
Grade: C

#33 Fredrik Modin
20gm, 3G, 2A, -2, 14:54

I was expecting more from Halpern and less from Modin. He wasn't a rockstar but he was better than I expected he would be.
Grade: C+

#56 Rich Clune
14gm, 0G, 2A, +1, 7:17

Oh Clunatic. He's alright. He's a slight upgrade from Ivanans. He could turn into a Neil or a Kaleta.
Grade: C+

They were pretty decent this season. Better than last season and certainly better defensively than in previous seasons. They weren't mindblowing but they weren't terrible. Their defensive game was the biggest improvement as well as the veteran presence added at the last two deadlines and over the summer with Smyth.
Forwards overall grade: B+

What a happy line

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Glossary... Sort of

  • "Ryan Miller Shutout" - A 58 minute, multi-goal shutout lead that is blown when Miller allows one meaningless goal
  • Britney or SabreBritney - Thomas Vanek
  • Butter Snaps - Carolina Hurricanes. Because Butter Snap pretzels, like the Carolina Hurricanes, are disgusting
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