The Los Angeles KISS enter their first game out of the universal bye week against the Tampa Bay Storm with a 5-7 record. That record might seem decent to some people, but for the KISS, that’s a huge improvement, considering the overall success of the franchise over the last two years. Last year, they finished with a record of 4-14. The only positive thing that came out of that season was an upset win over the eventual Arena Bowl champion San Jose SaberCats.
The KISS are currently third in the National Conference, and they have a very good chance of hosting a playoff game. The KISS and the Cleveland Gladiators are the two teams that can join the Orlando Predators, Philadelphia Soul, and Arizona Rattlers in terms of the teams that will host a playoff game. The offense is pretty much the same from last year, so how have the KISS put themselves in a position to host a playoff game?
The KISS saw their defense get a massive overhaul in the offseason, and so far, the defense has been the key to LA’s success. The KISS allow 46.2 points per game, which ranks first in all of the AFL. The KISS have limited some teams in terms of points scored, as they held the Jacksonville Sharks to 39 points in their season opener, and they held Tampa Bay to just 27 points in a game played at Amalie Arena in Tampa.
Fredrick Obi has been the best defender for the KISS statistically, as he leads the team in tackles (70.5), and in interceptions (5). Obi has also started in all 12 games this year. Obi ranks fourth in all of the AFL in tackles, and he ranks ninth in the AFL in interceptions. Josh Victorian has also played a very important role for the KISS, as he’s recorded 50.5 tackles and four interceptions this season.
Clevan Thomas, who is an AFL Hall of Famer, was acquired by the KISS just before the season started, and it appeared to be a great pick up. Thomas has played in all 12 games, and he’s racked up 25.5 tackles and three interceptions this year. The KISS defense has undoubtedly been the biggest reason for LA’s success, and without a defense like this, they wouldn’t be in a position to host a playoff game.