Can new look get Kopitar going? - LA Kings Insider

Since the loss of Simon Gagne to his concussion, the Kings have stayed with the same group of top-six forwards (not including the last game, when Dustin Penner was injured). It’s been some combination of Anze Kopitar, Mike Richards, Dustin Brown, Justin Williams, Dustin Penner and Jarret Stoll. Sutter has used a couple different combinations of those players, and he will use another one tonight, as Kopitar centers Brown and Williams while Richards centers Penner and Stoll. Re-arranging deck chairs on the Titanic? Perhaps, but for now, Sutter has identified his top six and he’s going with them. The primary goal, Sutter said, is to get more production from Anze Kopitar, who has scored one goal since just before Thanksgiving.

SUTTER: “Right now, without Simon (Gagne), that’s still the top six guys in your lineup, so you’re still just trying to (tweak it). It’s just about changed every game. Everybody sees it in practice and says, `That’s the line,’ but if you watch the way the game is played, we’re just trying to get that little bit more. We’re lucky to have Richie [Mike Richards] and Jarret, that can play two positions (each). You’re just trying to find something that works a little better. Against some teams, it’s a little easier from my standpoint at home, because if you’re in a 5-on-5 thing, you can kind of get who you want (on the ice). I think we all know that Mike is a better centerman. Hey, we need big Dustin and Mike and Stolly to be a good line. When Willy was there, Stolly, Dustin and Justin, they were our experienced line. They’re not old guys but they were our experienced line.

“What I’m trying to do is get Kopi going, get just a little more, not in terms of offense but just consistency in his game, from shift to shift. Brownie does a pretty good job of it. If he’s not spot-on, at least he’s banging on guys and all that. Justin has been playing really good. At the end of the day, it’s still about your top guys being your top guys. Everybody talks about a tough loss, 1-0, well, you can’t ask much more but your top guys can make the difference. Half a goal a game. I think Drew is really coming, so we’ve got to get Kopi and Richie, we’ve got to get those guys there too.’’

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Jake Muzzin

#6 | 6′ 3″ | 216 lb | Age: 27

Born: Feb 21, 1989
Birthplace: Woodstock, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Left


Muzzin was drafted in 2007 by the Pittsburgh Penguins, before signing to the Kings in 2010. He has since become the first Woodstock, Ontario professional athlete to win a major sports trophy.

Anze Kopitar

#11 | 6′ 3″ | 224 lb | Age: 29

Born: August 24, 1987
Birthplace: Jesenice, SVN
Position: C
Handedness: Left


As the 11th overall pick in the 2005 NHL Entry Draft, Kopitar became the first Slovenian to play in the NHL. Kopitar has spent his entire NHL career with the Kings, and following the 2015–16 season, was named the Kings’ captain. Noted for both his offensive and defensive play, Kopitar was awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy as the best defensive forward in the NHL in 2016.

Drew Doughty

#8 | 6′ 1″ | 195 lb | Age: 26

Born: December 8, 1989
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: D
Handedness: Right


Bio: Doughty is a Canadian defenceman who was selected second overall by the Kings in the 2008 Draft. Doughty made his NHL debut in 2008 as an 18-year-old and was named to the All-Rookie Team. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Kings, a two-time Olympic gold medallist with the Canadian national team, and a Norris Trophy finalist.

Tyler Toffoli

#73 | 6′ 1″ | 200 lb | Age: 24

Born: April 24, 1992
Birthplace: Scarborough, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right


Toffoli is a Canadian professional ice hockey forward, drafted by the Kings in the second round of the 2010 Draft. Toffoli scored his first career NHL goal in his second game in a 4–0 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes in 2013. He was also named the 2012–13 AHL All-Rookie Team.

Jeff Carter

#77 | 6′ 4″ | 215 lb | Age: 31

Born: January 1, 1985
Birthplace: London, ON, CAN
Position: C
Handedness: Right


Carter began his hockey career playing in the Ontario Hockey League in Canada before joining the AHL and playing for the Philadelphia Flyers. He was then traded to the Colombus Blue jackets before joining the LA Kings in 2012, where he has since won two Stanley Cups with the Kings.

Jonathan Quick

#32 | 6′ 1″ | 218 lb | Age: 30

Born: January 21, 1986
Birthplace: Milford, CT, USA
Position: G
Handedness: Left


Bio: Quick is the current goaltender for the LA Kings and was selected by Los Angeles at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. Previously, Quick was a silver medalist with USA at the 2010 Winter Olympics. He’s won two Stanley Cup championships with the Kings, along with being the most recent goaltender to be awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs.