November 6, 2010 2:45 pm

Clifford: magic number 9

The big game has arrived for Kyle Clifford. Tonight will be Clifford’s ninth game of the season, and before his 10th, the Kings must decide whether to keep him or return him to his junior team. Now, there’s no firm deadline this week. Should the Kings choose, they could technically keep him on the roster as a healthy scratch for another couple months (until their 42nd game) but that’s highly, highly unlikely to happen. More likely, after tonight’s game — and during the four-day break between games — Dean Lombardi, Terry Murray and others will talk about the near future for Clifford, as well as Brayden Schenn, who is sitting on eight games and is a healthy scratch tonight. Here’s what Murray said today about Clifford…

MURRAY: “He played, i know, limited minutes in the last game, maybe five, six minutes, but I thought he had, again, an impact on the hockey game. He’s in on the forecheck. He’s there, ready to battle for his team. On the bench, he’s very alive. He’s not the quiet guy that you see in the dressing room. He’s very involved in the emotional part of it, and I like that. I think it’s an important ingredient to bring. It brings a lot of energy to your team, and again, he’s willing to support any teammate that gets into any kind of trouble.”

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