A few years ago the Los Angeles Kings

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    A few years ago the Los Angeles Kings were celebrating their second Stanley Cup title in three seasons and looking like a budding dynasty.The once-formidable franchise is occupying the basement of the NHL these days and thinking more about positioning for the No. 1 pick in the 2019 draft than winning another title. At least that was the narrative a few weeks ago.The Kings have shown life lately Authentic Blake Wheeler Jersey , winning four straight — three against teams in playoff position — before falling to the Vegas Golden Knights on Saturday night. Los Angeles will try to keep its momentum going when it plays at the struggling Colorado Avalanche on Monday night.Article continues below …The Kings (15-21-3) are still eight points out of the second wild card in the West with half the season left. How thing unfold over the next couple of weeks could determine if the franchise becomes a seller before the trade deadline. The players are just focusing on what is happening on the ice.“I think we’re trying to just take it one game at a time, quite honestly,” Los Angeles forward Dustin Brown told the Los Angeles Times on Thursday. “We have a lot of new guys with not a lot of experience of what it takes to win at this level.”The Kings are surging as the Avalanche are stumbling. Colorado has lost four in a row, including an overtime setback to the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday night. Scoring has become an issue after the Avalanche were one of the top offensive teams through the first two months of the season.In five of the last six games, Colorado has scored two goals or fewer and the one contest it had four goals was a loss at Arizona.The struggles led to coach Jared Bednar shaking up his top two lines to create a spark. Despite the trio of Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen and Gabe Landeskog combining for 160 points before Saturday’s game Bednar moved Landeskog to the second line and put Matt Nieto with MacKinnon and Rantanen.By the second period, Landeskog was back on the top line. He played well but his double minor late in the third period led to a Chicago power-play goal in overtime.“Landy is a heck of a player http://www.officialhockeyjetsshop.com/authentic-adidas-bryan-little-jersey ,” Colorado forward Alexander Kerfoot told HockeyBuzz.com about the team’s captain. “Whatever line’s he’s playing on, he’ll help them produce and help them be consistent. We’re lucky to play with him tonight. He’s very consistent in what he brings every night. You know what you’re getting out of him.”Colorado (19-13-7) has three games left on this homestand and needs to turn things around. Despite going 3-7-2 in the last 12 games the Avalanche are still in third place in the Central Division.They will try to shore up some of their defensive issues, which may help get the offense going.“We want to be dangerous offensively, but we’ve got to be better on the defensive side, both on the rush and in our zone,” Bednar said Saturday night. WASHINGTON — The Columbus Blue Jackets will visit the Capitals Friday for the teams’ first meeting since their first-round Stanley Cup playoff series last Spring.The Capitals dropped the first two games at home before winning four straight. Games 3, 4 and 6 were played in Columbus and Washington closed out the series with a 6-3 win at Columbus.Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella hasn’t gotten over his team’s failures on their own ice.Article continues below …“I’m (ticked) off for our fans Womens Connor Hellebuyck Jersey ,” he said told the team’s website. “We had a few opportunities to win a home game in the playoffs and I’m (ticked) off they can’t enjoy that, even later in the series.“We go up 2-0, Game 3 we played really well, we couldn’t find a way to win it. Game 4 (a 4-1 loss) is the one that disturbs me. … To not to win a home game, that bugs me, because I want our players to feel that.”Washington (7-4-3) went on to win the Stanley Cup and has won two straight games for the first time this season while Columbus (8-6-1) is 4-2-1 on the road.The Capitals are coming off a stirring 2-1 win over the rival Pittsburgh Penguins Wednesday night. T.J. Oshie, who twice left the game due to injury Dmitry Kulikov Jersey , returned to score the game winner with 1:14 remaining in the third period.Oshie’s eighth goal of the season came after an accidental high stick in the first period left him with two stitches and an illegal hit by Evgeni Malkin in the third period almost put him out for good.“He came back right on time,” Nicklas Backstrom said. “That’s what elite players do; they come back. They score the game-winner.”Alex Ovechkin scored his 12th goal of the season and goaltender Braden Holtby made 41 saves to end a personal three-game losing streak (0-2-1).Thanks to Holtby, the Capitals won on a night they were outplayed by the Penguins and outshot 42-22.“That’s one thing that we’ve been battling this year and we kind of knew it was one of the things that was going to be a challenge for us, making sure that drive and motivation is up in the start of the season when the playoffs are so far away because these points mean a ton right now,” Holtby said. “We’re getting closer. We’re recognizing it more and more.”The Blue Jackets are coming off a 4-1 win over the Dallas Stars on Tuesday night. Anthony Duclair, Markus Nutivaara, Nick Foligno and Ryan Murray scored Youth Dustin Byfuglien Jersey , and Sergei Bobrovsky made 27 saves.Artemi Panarin leads the Blue Jackets in assists (11) and points (16) while Josh Anderson leads the way with seven goals.“(Anderson) could be a very important part of this team if he just keeps on concentrating each and every game,” Tortorella told the Columbus Dispatch. “It’s something we look for. He sometimes forgets and gets a little inconsistent. We’re going to keep on reminding him, because he’s playing on the power play now, he’s killing penalties and it’s rightfully deserved.”Bobrovsky is 7-10-4 with a 3.02 goals-against average and .900 save percentage against the Capitals. Holtby is 14-4-2 with a 2.62 GAA and .914 save percentage versus the Blue Jackets.Ovechkin has 16 goals and six assists in 30 games against the Blue Jackets while Backstrom has 24 points in 29 games.

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