September 18, 2011 4:00 pm

Loktionov ready to make impact?

Is this the season in which Andrei Loktionov makes an impact? Before each of the past two seasons, the Kings have had high hopes for the young center, but both seasons have been interrupted by shoulder injuries. Last season, Loktionov had four goals in 19 games for the Kings, then was assigned to AHL Manchester and was nearly a point-per-game performer before he injured his shoulder. Now, Loktionov is healthy and back in training camp, but faces a tough road to the NHL. Thus far, Loktionov has appeared to be far more effective as a center than a winger, and the Kings are deep at center, with Anze Kopitar, Mike Richards, Jarret Stoll, Trevor Lewis and Brad Richardson already lined up with NHL experience. Still, Terry Murray said he likes what he is seeing from the 21-year-old forward…

MURRAY: “Loktionov is looking very good. This is a young player that I’ve known now for three years. He’s just maturing now into a solid player, a solid man. He tests so well in all of his scores, physically. He’s very strong and he’s a skill player who likes to have the puck on his stick, sees the ice and makes plays. The veteran players that are with him, they enjoy playing with a player like that because they know they’re going to get the puck. He just continues to climb the ladder. It’s going to be interesting for me to see, as we get into the exhibition games, how he’s going to deal with it.”

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