The 2011–12 Los Angeles Kings season was the 45th season (44th season of play) for the National Hockey League franchise. Although they finished the season with 95 points, and the eighth seed in the Western Conference playoffs, they went on to capture the first Stanley Cup championship in team history.
On December 12, 2011, the Kings relieved Head Coach Terry Murray of his coaching duties and named John Stevens as interim head coach. On December 20, 2011, the Kings hired Darryl Sutter to be their head coach, replacing Interim Head Coach John Stevens.
The Kings were 10th in the Western Conference, 2 seeds away from a playoff spot, with only a month to go in the regular season. Their defense and goaltending being the only highlights throughout most the season, highlighted by Jonathan Quick and Drew Doughty. The offense was loaded with talent, but unable to find any kind of significant consistency. Until the final month and a half, when they proceeded to go 12-4-3 in their final 19 games as their offense finally caught fire and started scoring the goals they lacked earlier in the year. Securing the 8th and final playoff seed in their 81st and second to last game, a shoot-out loss to their archrival, San Jose Sharks.
Out of the Kings 82 regular-season games, 21 ended in a shutout. The Kings as a team were shut-out 10 times, a League-high.
The Kings made the playoffs for the third consecutive season, needing a win in the final game to secure the eighth seed. The Kings also became the second team to eliminate the first, second and third seeds from the playoffs in the same post-season (after the 2003–04 Calgary Flames), as well as the only team to win the Stanley Cup after defeating the first, second and third seeds in sequence. (Darryl Sutter was the head coach of both the 2003–04 Flames and 2011–12 Kings.) They then defeated the New Jersey Devils in the Stanley Cup Finals, becoming the first eighth seed in North American professional sports history to win a championship. They are also one of the few teams to win a championship after never benefitting from home-venue advantage in the post-season. Los Angeles would start every series by winning the first three games, only sweeping the St. Louis Blues.
Divisions: CE – Central, NW – Northwest, PA – Pacific
bold - qualified for playoffs, y – Won division, p – Won Presidents' Trophy (best record in NHL)
Note: Min, TOI = Minutes played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T,T/OT = Ties; OTL = Overtime losses; GA = Goals-against; GAA = Goals-against average; SO = Shutouts; SA = Shots against; SV = Shots saved; SV% = Save percentage;
†Denotes player spent time with another team before joining Kings. Stats reflect time with the Kings only.
Bold/italics denotes franchise record.
Underline denotes currently with a minor league affiliate.
Updated June 4, 2012.
The Kings have been involved in the following transactions during the 2011–12 season.