In the absence of Anze Kopitar, it’s no stretch to say that the most dramatic move will be made by Trevor Lewis, who moves from the fourth-line center spot to the second line, between Ryan Smyth and Dustin Brown. Lewis had a four-game stint in December as the Kings’ second-line right winger, but this will be a new challenge, playing center in a high-profile role and playing big minutes. Lewis is averaging just over 11 minutes per game this season, and that’s likely to jump significantly going forward. Lewis has three goals and six assists in 65 games this season, and has established himself as a responsible two-play player and a strong penalty killer, and now the Kings hope Lewis has more offense in him as well. After practice today, Lewis talked about the Kings’ challenge going forward and his thoughts on his new role…
LEWIS: “Obviously two of your best offensive players are down. That hurts, but I think everybody is just going to chip in a little bit more, and everyone has got to show more responsibility.”
Question: Can you talk about how your game has evolved since the start of the season?
LEWIS: “At the start of the season, I just wanted to show that I belong here. I think I’ve just been pretty consistent throughout the year, and I’ve got to keep going with that, stick with everything I’ve been doing with the defensive responsibility but just kind of chip in a little bit more. Playing with those two good players, I should be all right.”
Question: And you don’t really want to change the way you play too much, with that energy and responsibility, right?
LEWIS: “Stick with it, stick with being solid defensively, and then look to get the puck to these guys and hopefully pop a few more goals.”