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February 27, 2011 5:15 pm

Smyth, Stoll have longstanding partnership

For all the line-combination changes the Kings have made this season, the pair of left winger Ryan Smyth and center Jarret Stoll has been remarkably consistent. Put together before the home opener, Smyth and Stoll have since played on the same line for 55 of 60 games. There was no introduction needed, of course, since before joining the Kings they were also teammates for parts of four seasons with the Edmonton Oilers. This season, they’ve had different wingers — Justin Williams, most prominently, but also Trevor Lewis, Oscar Moller, Alexei Ponikarovsky and, now, Dustin Brown — and were split for a brief period but are now back together. After practice, I asked Smyth about the partnership with Stoll, and what he thinks makes it work…

SMYTH: “What I really find about Stolly, when it comes down to it, is that it starts in the faceoff circle for him. He’s obviously very good at it and he takes pride in it. That gives us more puck-possession time, with him winning the draws. He’s very responsible in his own zone. He plays hard and physical down low, and in the D-zone coverage, and reads the play well in the offensive zone and gets himself into shooting lanes. So it’s a good fit, and hopefully we can maintain some more chemistry going forward and hopefully produce.”

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