Home Kings Cam Talbot is the One to Watch in 1st Round Series vs. Edmonton Oilers

Cam Talbot is the One to Watch in 1st Round Series vs. Edmonton Oilers

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If the Los Angeles Kings are going to advance in the 2024 Stanley Cup playoffs, they need a massive series from goaltender Cam Talbot.

After being named a 2024 NHL All-Star, Talbot struggled in the second half. That led to backup David Rittich getting more starts due to Talbot’s poor play.

Does Talbot have enough to carry Los Angeles to a first-round upset of the Edmonton Oilers?


Kings’ Talbot Needs to Regain All-Star Form

Talbot has gone through ups and downs throughout the season as he was appointed the starting goaltender since game one. He started on fire and caught the league’s attention enough to be voted into the 2024 NHL All-Star game. His first half was not bad as he posted a record of 14-10-5 with a 2.33 goals-against-average and a .9134 save percentage in 29 games. The Kings as a team started well and were in first place early in the season.

Then the new year came.

PHOTO: Zach Dooley/LA Kings Insider

Both Talbot and Los Angeles struggled and hovered around .500 for a bit. Nothing was going right, and Talbot could not stop a beach ball. He was struggling for whatever reason, and it showed in his play. During the second half, he posted a record of 13-10-1 with a 2.72 GAA and a .909 save percentage. The Kings roster played well enough to make the playoffs, but Talbot still struggles down the stretch.

His regular season totals for the 2023-24 season were a record of 27-20-6 with a 2.48 GAA, a save percentage of .913, and three shutouts. However, he lost game one in the 2024 Stanley Cup playoffs and is now 0-1 with a 6.05 GAA and a .864 save percentage. He has allowed three or more goals in five of his last six games. Edmonton is a formidable opponent, and if the Kings have any chance of advancing, he will need to pick up his game quickly. If he struggles again in game two tonight in Edmonton, David Rittich may be between the pipes for game three. Head Coach Jim Hiller may have no choice at that point to save the Kings’ season and maybe his job.

Talbot is an above-average goaltender who has played okay this season. He has had spurts of brilliant play and other games where we questioned why he is on the roster. He does have a winning record, and his GAA and save percentage are decent, but he needs to play at an elite level to eliminate the high-scoring Oilers.


This is only round one, and it gets harder. Talbot needs to be the goaltender that won 42 games for these Oilers back in the 2016-17 season.
He needs to return to the basics and not overplay the situation before there is no more time to improve his game.

PHOTO: Getty Images

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