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Welcome to the NHL, Kid

I know, I should be mad or afraid for his safety, but I can't; that was an awesome hit. Well done, Jan Bulis.

One thing I’ve never liked, though: why does Scott Thornton have to fight Jan Bulis for hitting Johnson? I know it’s Johnson’s first game and Thornton is just standing up for his teammate, but I don’t like how guys have to defend themselves for making a good hockey play. This is why Dustin Brown always has that scared look on his face after he rails someone. I’m not sure why Brown looks like he has Down’s syndrome, though.

The Kings concluded their season series with the Sharks (thank God) and predictably got destroyed. With the loss, the Kings’ final record against the Sharks was 2-6. They ended their series against the Stars by going 0-6-2. Like I said before, the Kings went 4-2-2 against the Ducks, so it’s not the Kings fault that the Ducks are going to win the division. As Earl points out below, the Ducks are currently ahead of the Stars and Sharks by 4 points; they would likely have the division wrapped up by now if it weren’t for the Kings. That’s awesome. If the Kings are going to suck, at least they can have the dignity to screw over the Ducks in the process.

Why were the Kings able to hang with the Ducks while being completely and utterly destroyed by the Sharks and the Stars? I could come up with a theory about systems matching up or personnel differences, but ultimately I think it was dumb luck. Sometimes bad teams beat good ones; there’s no magic answer that can explain when things like that happen.

I’m out this week (I have a life… well, not really), so you guys are by yourselves for the rest of the season. I’ll probably have a post recapping the Kings’ season (I imagine there will be a lot of cursing), but I’ll mostly be saving my snide remarks for the comments. Make sure you keep up here at Battle of California, though, as I'm sure there will be a lot of good content up. Good luck to the Ducks, Stars and Sharks; beat Nashville, will you?

For my fellow Kings fans, please remember to enjoy these last few games. There’s going to be a lot of draft talk (hopefully we’ll have a top-3 pick) and rumors about who we’re going to sign in the off-season (more on that later), but right now just relax and enjoy the hockey. We have a rare opportunity to simply savor each pass and enjoy the game for what it is, rather than who wins. The Kings play the Coyotes twice; watch the match-ups and note who plays against whom. Remember, the only thing worse than poor Kings hockey is no hockey at all.

A quick story: I had a friend who told me that only a lunatic would put themselves through the amount of misery I went through every hockey season and that any sane person would simply change teams or at least not care so much. Why put myself through this, all for a team that doesn’t care about me individually at all? I had no rational answer for that; the only response I could muster was, "Because, Kings rule."

I must be crazy.