Festivus Series: Pacific Division

Welcome back to Josh Tessler’s Festivus series. 

If you haven’t read the other Festivus posts, this series is all about airing your grievances. As a hockey fan, we all have grievances about our teams and need to vent once in a while. Since one of the core principles of Festivus is to air your grievances, Tessler has authored a series around grieving about each NHL Team.

In this post, Tessler is honing in on teams in the Pacific Division. So, let’s get rolling!

Los Angeles Kings

The Los Angeles Kings have been awful. Just awful. Somehow they beat their divisional foe, the San Jose Sharks yesterday, but aside from a shocking defeat over the very talented Sharks lineup, they’ve been terrible. Currently, the Kings have a record of 13-20-3 and will need an absolute miracle to climb up the standings.

For Kings fans, most of the blame should be pointed at their front office. The Kings have a lot of players tied up in massive deals.  The salaries of Ilya Kovalchuk, Anze Kopitar, Dustin Brown, Jeff Carter, Drew Doughty, Alec Martinez, Dion Phaneuf and Jonathan Quick equate to 53.47 million USD. That means that their contracts eat up 67% of the salary cap. That’s awful. With how of them are performing, that’s a tough pill to swallow. It’ll also be difficult for Rob Blake, general manager of the Kings to unload them via trade.

Arizona Coyotes

If you are a fan of the Arizona Coyotes, your grievance is most likely about Max Domi. For some reason, Domi was awful in Arizona, but after a trade to the Montreal Canadiens, he’s been on fire. In 37 games played, he has 14 goals, 21 assists, 3 power-play goals, 5 power-play assists and a 16.1 shooting percentage.

Unfortunately, the Coyotes are now stuck with Alex Galchenyuk. Even though Galchenyuk was hurt to start the season and Coyotes fans should be patient, he still isn’t making up for losing Domi. 

Vancouver Canucks

If you are a fan of the Vancouver Canucks, you are grieving about their stellar goaltending. Ok, I’m joking. Jacob Markstrom and Anders Nilsson have been atrocious in net. Together, they have a combined Goals Against Average (GAA) of 2.98 and a Save Percentage (SV%) of 0.903. 

Unfortunately, their general manager, Jim Benning hasn’t been open to change. Benning has a stellar prospect playing in the AHL in Thatcher Demko, but hasn’t been willing to give the 23 year old a chance to prove himself in the NHL. 

Edmonton Oilers

Milan Lucic is the main reason why Edmonton Oilers fans are complaining. Lucic has a 6 million USD cap hit and his contract doesn’t expire till the end of the 2022-2023 season. The worst part is that Lucic has a No Movement Clause. 

Unfortunately, Lucic isn’t performing as if he was being paid 6 million USD per year. In 35 games played, he has 1 goal and 6 assists. 

Great job Peter Chiarelli. Outstanding signing by you and it’s really paying off. 

Anaheim Ducks

If you are a fan of the Anaheim Ducks, you are grieving about Corey Perry. Without Perry in the lineup till February, the Ducks have had to rely on their depth to step up and dominate in the offensive zone. Thankfully, Ducks fans have seen Pontus Aberg and Ondrej Kase step up, but it’s not enough. The Ducks need more offensive power, especially since they are one of the worst teams in the league in Goals For/Games Played. If the Ducks are going to make a run this season, they will need to find more success in the offensive zone from their other forwards. 

Vegas Golden Knights, San Jose Sharks & Calgary Flames

If you are a fan of the Vegas Golden Knights, San Jose Sharks or the Calgary Flames, you don’t really have much to complain about. 

Each of these three teams have their own issues, but they are minimal. These three teams will most likely be in the playoffs, unless something drastic happens. 

Happy Festivus!

stats from NHL.com and hockey-reference.com

featured image photo credit – Josh Tessler

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