San Jose Sharks bright start fades quickly in defeat to the Los Angeles Kings

Dec 27, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Kings center Phillip Danault (24) gets
Dec 27, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Kings center Phillip Danault (24) gets / Jessica Alcheh-USA TODAY Sports

This is one of those losses where it started well and then all went horribly wrong for the San Jose Sharks. Such is the pain of enduring the rebuild, the Sharks just couldn't keep up with a team that has a lot more to offer in almost every position. It's why the Sharks are towards the bottom of the NHL standings while the Los Angeles Kings are towards the top. San Jose just could not keep up.

San Jose would strike first however. Fabian Zetterlund would force a turnover that the Sharks blueline, allowing him to poke the puck behind the defensemen to generate a breakaway. He ran away from the chasing pack and beat the glove of the Kings netminder, and the San Jose Sharks were up 1-0 in Los Angeles. If things stay this way, the bragging rights would be immense, but that would not be the case.

Unfortunately, the Kings would tie the game in the same fashion the Sharks took the lead. A turnover from Henry Thrun at the blueline leads to Kevin Fiala walking in alone. He went forehand, backhand, forehand and roofed it over the pad of Kaapo Kahkonen, and the Kings had tied the game up. This was when the floodgates opened, and the genie came out of the bottle. It was going to take a lot to get it back.

It would be a quick doubling of the Kings lead. Another defensive turnover costs the Sharks. Kahkonen lays it off to Kyle Burroughs behind the Sharks net. Burroughs sends it around for Mario Ferraro. Ferraro loses it Trevor Lewis who walks out in front and fires a backhanded low. Kahkonen couldn't stop it, and the Kings take the lead through two very avoidable goals.

Los Angeles would eventually get a goal through their own talents. It would start when Kahkonen stopped an Alex Laferriere shot and turned it into the corner. LA was able to retrieve the puck and get it back to Arthur Kaliyev. He ripped a shot that Kahkonen was able to stop, but the rebound fell straight onto the stick of Pierre-Luc Dubois, and the Kings were able to take a 3-1 lead about halfway through the game.

In the third, the next goal would come early when Adrian Kempe ripped a shot high and around the boards. Vladislav Gavrikov put it back in deep were Carl Grundstrom would pick it up. Grundstrom moved it back to Matt Roy at the point and he fired it. Kempe got a tip on it and it beat Kahkonen high, and he really had no chance. It was now 4-1 Los Angeles, and we can all start to move away from this one.

Los Angeles wanted to pour salt in the wounds, so Adrian Kempe did just that. Drew Doughty moved the puck to Mikey Anderson, who played a simple pass to Kempe on his own side of the red line. He then proceeded to burn past the low forward and get around the Jan Rutta on the back end before roofing the puck on the backhand. Now, the Kings were just flexing their muscles on the Sharks.

San Jose was able to stop the bleeding from this point onwards, but the damage had been done. Your Sharks lose their sixth game in a row, and now sit alone at the bottom of the NHL standings after the Chicago Blackhawks won last night. If you are determined to look ahead to the future, Macklin Celebrini is playing in the world juniors right now, and the Sharks are in pole position for the first overall pick.