The success of the Kings is literally killing me. Last week, I had the stomach flu for a couple days and I can only conclude it was due to Los Angeles thoroughly owning the St. Louis Blues. My body is rejecting the fact they are going to the Western Conference Finals as an 8-seed. I might be dead in a couple weeks.
Over the years, I've considered the San Jose Sharks to be the Ducks number one rival. My rivalry determination method is different than most. I rate rivals based on how obnoxious the other team's fans are. Since the Ducks destroyed the Sharks (and only the Sharks) this past season, I've flipped Kings to number one and Sharks to number two. With San Jose choking - again - in the off-season, their fans have been humbled, or at least, forced to jump off the bandwagon once again. Kings fans, including all these new ones, are running wild with confidence that their team is the best ever.
I am annoyed by all of this. For all those LA fans reading this, you're probably thinking, "She's just bitter because the Ducks missed the playoffs." Well, YOU'RE RIGHT! I am extremely bitter. I am a seething little ball of hate. I am so angry that I made a list of the reasons I hate the Kings right now:
1) I am forced to cheer for other teams. Do you know how hard it is to pull for the Vancouver Canucks? Those guys are dicks! I had to rationalize their diving as legitimate penalties that should go against the Kings. I was praying for the return of Daniel Sedin. Each time I saw Roberto Luongo's name on the starting lineup, a little piece of me died. I didn't mind the Blues so much because I figured they were going to easily dispatch of the Kings, like they did the Sharks. I found myself shouting expletives at each goal the Kings scored. Which brings me to my next point...
2) The Kings couldn't score goals in the regular season! All the sudden the team is this offensive powerhouse. I would expect this behavior from Anze Kopitar, but certainly not the rest of the team. They were supposed to miss the playoffs because they stopped scoring goals.
3) A captain that busts his ass every shift. I thought that concept was dead and buried with Scott Niedermayer. Seriously, Dustin Brown?! If memory serves me correctly, he was being shopped at the trade deadline and now he's doing his best Corey Perry impression - yeah, he's being a prick, too. Cheap-shots, late hits, and goals (even short-handed ones!) He is inspiring his team to do better and play harder. It's damn annoying.
4) Forcing Brian Hayward to say nice things about the Kings. He may have the analyst job on the national broadcasts, but it was some cruel joke to add him to this series. You win this round, King of Homers, Jim Fox.
5) The Legion of Douche. (First, I have to admit that I got this moniker from super-Kings fan, The Royal Half. One of probably four decent Kings fans I know.) Anyway, the Legion of Douche is the line of Dustin Penner, Mike Richards and Jeff Carter. And you can thank GM Dean Lombardi for assembling them.
I was LOVING the fact that the Penner trade was a total and complete bust. Not to mention the fact that he was making a total ass of himself by being overweight in camp, is called out by both of his coaches multiple times, and he threw out his back eating his (now ex) wife's pancakes. It took the onset of the playoffs for Penner to realize that he's playing for his next contract. I figured that Penner was going to sign with the Ducks in the off-season and we're going to get him at bargain basement prices. Now that he's played himself into shape and contributing in games - and all Ducks fans are far to familiar with the fact that he loves money over loyalty - he's not going to take that home(ish) town discount to come back to Anaheim. I could see him signing a obscenely high dollar contract for what little he brings to the team - think Scotty Upshall or Max Talbot.
On to Mike Richards! Does he always sound like someone punched him in the balls? I don't think I've ever heard him speak before until the playoffs. I was taken off-guard by how high his voice is. I remember the exact moment I heard he was traded to the Kings. Arthur and I were sitting in the Las Vegas airport, waiting for our flight home after Corey Perry won the Hart Trophy (humblebrag!), when Twitter informed me of the trade. My very first thought was, "I wonder if his home will be in the San Fernando Valley?" The only positive I can take from this is that his goal total dropped from 23 to 18 (5 goals vs. Ducks). I attribute the lack of offense to (allegedly) whatever he picked up in said San Fernando Valley.
Oh how the trade for Jeff Carter pissed me off. Not only were the Kings dumping an undeserved, ridiculous contract (for another) of Jack Johnson, they were getting rid of the best defensman for the Ducks to score against. He was considered a "top four defensman" (not my words) that would be matched up against the only two lines that could score for Anaheim. And score we did. In his career against the Ducks, he was a minus-7. UGH. Is Carter smart enough to get traded away from his BFF, then work to get traded AGAIN to be with his BFF? No. He's not. He's just a prima donna asshole with a Neil Patrick Harris haircut. (I'm sorry NPH.)
6) Awesome celebrities. In the past few games, I have been shown: Tom Hanks, David Beckham, Kobe Bryant and Will Ferrell sitting in the crowd at Staples Center. Who do we get? Cuba Gooding Jr. and Snoop Dogg, who probably doesn't remember being at the games.
7) Coming to my 'hood. This past Friday, Drew Doughty and Trevor Lewis attended a baseball game where they were shown on the jumbotron. Of course they would go to an Angels game...say whaa'? Look Kings fans, we already have an owner in Arte Moreno that is considerably confused as to where his team actually plays. Just because he won a case against the Anaheim City Council to name his team the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim doesn't mean you're allowed to come to our stadium - a stadium in which you can see Honda Center from. Naturally the Anaheim faithful boo-ed them when they were announced as LA Kings. NO. NO THEY DIDN'T. They did nothing, which in Orange County speak is considered cheering.
8) I thought the tweet after Game 1 versus Vancouver was awesome. I hate myself.
9) Ruined my birthday. Those that know me really well or are just acquaintances I felt forced to accept on Facebook, know that I've been a Ducks fan for a long time. They also know I run this website. So, that would explain why 90% of the phone calls, text messages, emails, Tweets, and Facebook wall posts contained mostly these statements after Happy Birthday: "Bet you're pissed the Kings are winning" or "How 'bout those Kings?!" or "It must suck to be a Ducks fan right now" or "Jump on the LA bandwagon with the rest of us". I may or may not have made up the last statement.
10) The Ducks fucking head coach picked the Kings to go to the Stanley Cup Final.