Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

Florida Panthers face Los Angeles Kings in matinee game


The Florida Panthers take on the Los Angeles Kings in an evening matinee at The Staples Center. The game will start at 4 p.m. ET/1 p.m PT.

Update: Here is the breakdown from the Los Angeles Kings perspective on Rink Roalty

The Rundown

 

Florida LA Kings
26-36-8 Record 39-25-6
60 points Points 84 points
2.37 G/G 2.33
3.13 GA/G 2.07
10.5 PP% 14.9
75 PK% 83.1

 

Another tale of two cities, as the Kings are amidst of a playoff push, as the Panthers are looking to build their way to that level. Of all the teams currently in the playoffs, Los Angeles has the lowest goals-per-game number – and sits third to last in the entire league.

Despite the scoring struggles the Kings still find themselves third in the Pacific division, and have won seven of their last ten games.

Olympic goaltender Jonathan Quick makes up for the Kings struggles offensively – as he has posted a 2.07 GAA and a .915 SP.

Player Spotlights

Anze Kopitar

Kopitar is the team’s top offensive weapon, leading the team in points with 58 (22 G, 36 A). Averaging over 21-minutes a night, Kopitar is a do-it-all for the Kings as he plays both the power play and the penalty kill.

The 6’3, 224-pound Slovenian native is a physical specimen of size and skill and has the ability to beat you multiple ways. He is a must stop for the Panthers, and a player you will have to take instant notice the second he steps on the ice.

Jimmy Hayes

Hayes has been one of the Panthers’ hot young guns the past few weeks; the Phoenix Coyotes game snapped a four game point streak for the 24-year old former second round pick.

In his last seven games, Hayes has registered four goals (seven points) – including two power play goals. The Kings are loaded with big physical forwards that like to grind it out, so having a player like Hayes who can do the same will be a big part of if the Panthers will win.

Key Matchup

Roberto Luongo vs Marian Gaborik

In a battle of deadline acquisitions, both were acquired to help their respective teams but for different time frames. Gaborik is a pending free agent and was brought in to liven up the Kings’ stagnant offense. In seven games with his new team, Gaborik has scored twice and has registered four points total. He scored the shootout winner in the Kings’ win over the Washington Capitals.

While Luongo is already 33-years old, he was brought in to be the future of the Panthers organization. He now gives the team a franchise goaltender and he hasn’t wasted anytime making an impact with his old team.

After posting a shutout in his first start back in Florida, Luongo has gone on to post a 3-3-1 overall record to go with a 2.42 GAA and a .926 SP. Despite having one of the worst offenses in the game, Luongo ensures that the Panthers can play with any team in the league on any given night.

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Tags: Anze Kopitar Florida Panthers Jimmy Hayes Marian Gaborik Roberto Luongo