As noted earlier, the Kings shifted things around a bit today on the third and fourth lines, with Trent Hunter joining Kyle Clifford and Jarret Stoll on the third line, and with Kevin Westgarth joining Ethan Moreau and Colin Fraser on the fourth line. For now, that leaves Trevor Lewis and Brad Richardson, both of whom have been struggling offensively, on the outside, but Terry Murray said he hadn’t decided whether to stay with that look tomorrow in St. Louis.
MURRAY: “I don’t know what I’m doing there yet. I don’t know. I put it together for practice, to take a look at things, but I don’t know yet, what I’m eventually going to get to.’’
And here’s what Murray said about Lewis and Richardson, two players who would seem to be in a similar situation right now. They’re versatile players, well-regarded for their work but both struggling to score.
MURRAY: “I think the offensive part of the game, it can happen. They can score some big goals at critical times of the. Going back to Detroit, or back to the playoffs last year, usually your top two lines are going to neutralize each other over the course of a game or a series. That’s where your other players have to step up and take advantage of the opportunity to contribute, big time. And they did that in the playoffs last year. They did a good job. Right now, they’ve been getting some looks, especially Richardson, and haven’t been able to find the back of the net. He has a resume of being able to score, as does Lewis. It’s not there right now. We’ve gone through 20 games, and no goals.
“That being said, they need to be better in other areas of the ice, though. They’ve got to be better in that dot-to-board game, recovering pucks, harder on the puck and stronger plays whenever they do have it. If the puck is not going into the net, then they have to find a way to make a difference in the game by doing all the other stuff that’s critical to playing the game the right way, playing it hard and determined. There needs to be a little bit of improvement in that area, quite frankly.”