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Justin Williams

Five questions facing Western Conference teams

Five questions facing Western Conference teams

There are always many questions to be answered when an NHL season opens. Here are five facing teams in the Western Conference:

1. Can the Kings contend for the Stanley Cup after not qualifying for the playoffs last season?

They were the first champion to sit out the postseason since the 2007 Carolina Hurricanes, and they lost key pieces in defenseman Slava Voynov and winger Justin Williams. Milan Lucic will be under pressure to boost a sputtering offense.

2. Will a sexual assault accusation against Patrick Kane disrupt the Chicago Blackhawks’ title defense?

He hasn’t been charged but an allegation stemming from an...