Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Rich Hammond of LA Kings Insider,
Will a return to the third line get Dustin Penner’s production going? Penner spent the previous two games in a first-line look, with Anze Kopitar and Justin Williams, and the result was one shot on goal, one minor penalty and a minus-2 rating. So, the Kings will try something different. With first-line winger Simon Gagne expected to return Thursday, Penner will return to the third line, alongside Jarret Stoll and Brad Richardson. That’s a role in which Penner seemed to have his best game of the season, last week in Dallas, so Terry Murray will give it another look Thursday. Penner has one point, an assist, in nine games this season.
“I was cleared to practice with the team and cleared to get some contact in practice. I feel really good. I feel ready to play and almost back to normal. Now it’s just kind of in the hands of the training staff and the coaching staff to put me in.’’
-Drew Doughty of the LA Kings. More on if Doughty could play tomorrow from Rich Hammond of LA Kings Insider.
from Helene Elliott of the LA Times,
Although Quick won’t dwell on his numbers, they deserve attention.
He is the first Kings goalie to record three straight shutouts. The last time any NHL goalie had more than three consecutive shutouts was 2003-04, when Brian Boucher recorded five in a row for Phoenix. The NHL record for the longest scoreless sequence by a goalie is 461:29 by Alec Connell of Ottawa in 1927-28, when forward passing wasn’t permitted in attacking zones.
Quick was last beaten on a power-play goal by Matt Carle at 13:29 of the third period at Philadelphia on Oct. 15, a game the Kings won 1:39 into overtime. He stopped 27 shots in a 5-0 rout of the St. Louis Blues at Staples Center, 28 in a 2-0 victory over the Coyotes at Glendale, Ariz., and 28 by the Stars on Saturday at home, working without a cushion until Jack Johnson scored on a 60-foot slap shot at 15:02 of the third period.
The last two goals Quick has given up — to Carle and to Daniel Briere in the first period at Philadelphia — were produced during power plays. Quick has not yielded an even-strength goal since Patrik Elias bested him at 13:03 of the first period at New Jersey on Oct. 13.
from Ken Baker at NHL.com,
When it comes to earthquakes, floods, and just-shoot-me traffic, we all know California is king, but now we can add another notable item to the Golden State’s royal list: goalies.
With three world-class NHL goalkeepers now plying their trade in California (Jonas Hiller, Antti Niemi and Jonathan Quick), the country’s most populous state is also the most populous state of superstar goalies (sorry, New York and Pennsylvania, but it’s true!).
But which of these three top-notch keepers is California’s best right now?
from Dan Arritt of ESPN LosAngeles,
The hit that sidelined Los Angeles Kings defenseman Drew Doughty with an upper-body injury for a week to 10 days continued to produce a domino effect elsewhere on the team.
Dustin Penner, who instigated a fight with Flyers rookie forward Zac Rinaldo after his first-period collision with Doughty on Saturday night in Philadelphia, left the ice midway through practice Monday at Toyota Sports Center because of a knee injury suffered during the skirmish.
Despite being “reassured” by a doctor in Philadelphia and the Kings training staff that the injury was just a bruise, coach Terry Murray said Penner decided to have the injury further examined by the team physician.
“He wanted to get it checked out by the doctor and see if there’s anything further on that,” Murray said. “The plan was full practice (Monday) and there was nothing before the practice that was going to lead me to think that it was going to be anything different than that, so obviously it’s bothering him.”
from Nicholas J. Cotsonika of Yahoo,
Had the Flyers won the Cup in 2010 instead of falling to the Chicago Blackhawks in the final, you never know. This might have turned out differently. But they didn’t, and it didn’t. And so less than four months after his shocking trade to the Los Angeles Kings, Mike Richards had to settle for this:
An orange sign behind the Kings’ bench during warm-ups: “RICHIE YOU WILL ALWAYS BE A FLYER IN OUR [HEART].” A thank-you message on the scoreboard from the Flyers and a standing ovation from the fans early in the first period – while he was preparing for a defensive zone faceoff. Boos just about every time he touched the puck afterward. Oh, and the cherry on top – the first assist on the overtime goal that gave his new team a 3-2 victory over his old one.
“I know he was very anxious about this game,” Kings coach Terry Murray said, “and at the end of the day, how fitting is that?”
All things considered, maybe this is for the best.
This hit from Zac Rinaldo of the Flyers forced him out of the game tonight after 24 seconds of play.
added 8:36pm, via Helene Elliott tweet,
seven to 10 days is minimum for doughty. again, told NOT head.
“We feel we can compete for the Stanley Cup, and that’s what we’re preparing for. The big thing is when your general manager and the ownership goes out and makes the moves and spends the money that they did, it’s a vote of confidence in us as a group to say that they think we’re ready. It’s like anything in life. When people believe in you, you tend to get the best out of people.”
-Willie Mitchell of the LA Kings. More on the Kings from the CP at The Hockey News.
LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Kings have signed forward Trent Hunter to a one-year contract, Kings President/General Manager Dean Lombardi announced today.
Hunter, 31, has spent his entire NHL career (2002-03 through 2010-11) with the New York Islanders. Last season he recorded four points (1-3=4) and 23 penalty minutes in 17 games, missing most of the season with a lower body injury.
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
On the face of it, Drew Doughty finally beat down the Los Angeles Kings, forcing them to accept his terms on a new contract.
But this is a win for the Kings just as it is for Doughty, 21, who agreed to an eight-year deal for an average of $7-million per year late Thursday night. The agreement ended a bitter standoff between Doughty and the Kings, which grew increasingly nasty in the last few weeks when the Kings refused to increase their offer beyond the $6.8-million per year centre Anze Kopitar, 24, is making. Doughty and his agent, Don Meehan, would not take less than $7-million a year.
By giving in to Doughty and Meehan, the Kings secured its most important player, who is already one of the league’s best defencemen, for the next eight years. It reassures a fragile fan base they are serious about winning.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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