Sutter to rookie: Keep proving it - LA Kings Insider

Dwight King and Jordan Nolan have been getting quite a bit of attention since being called up from Manchester, and understandably so. Both rookies turned in two solid games over the weekend, and both scored their first NHL goals on Sunday in Dallas. As far as Darryl Sutter is concerned, though, that’s only going to carry them until tomorrow night at about 7:29 p.m. After that, the two rookies will have to prove themselves all over again. Sutter, not surprisingly, hasn’t been effusive of his praise of King and Nolan. He’s not going to anoint them as saviors after two games. Jarret Stoll hasn’t returned to practice yet, but he’s eligible to return from injured reserve on Saturday, and by all indications, he won’t be out much longer than that (if at all), meaning that the roster spots of King and Nolan are far from secure.

SUTTER: “I just don’t want them to tail off. If they have one practice where they tail off… You know what? They’re nothing special. They’re kids who are trying to learn how to play the game. We’re in a position, because of injuries and not scoring enough goals, to give them a chance. They better take full advantage of it. Hey, they’re a year older than Kyle Clifford. They’re a year older than Lokti. So they’re nothing special. They should have a little more under their belts than those guys, and they better prove it. It’s simple. It’s not the L.A., Hollywood thing. It’s about trying to win games, and get the most out of them.’’

Question: Has that been your message to them?

SUTTER: “Absolutely. There’s got to be a reason why they didn’t make the team in September, so they better not come up with that again. Hey, you can’t have 25 guys, right? You can’t have 14 or 15 forwards. You can only have 23 men on your roster. So, in four or five days (when Stoll returns), somebody is not going to be here. And that’s not got to do with me. That’s got to do with just accounting, and performance. That’s being honest.’’

On the subject of calling up prospects, Sutter was asked about Brandon Kozun, the Kings’ sixth-round pick in 2009 who has 13 goals in 51 games this season and had 23 goals in 73 games last season, and if Kozun had been considered.

SUTTER: “You have a be a really dynamic player when you’re a little player. You have to be really dynamic. How many of them are? Those two kids who came in here now, they’re big kids who can skate. That’s what they are, right? When you’re a little guy, you better be really dynamic. How many of them is there? The only one I can think of, in the American League, off the top of my head is the little guy who is in Montreal, Desharnais. I saw him in the American League and I thought, `He’s going to play,’ because he was dynamic. It’s a tough league to play in. The average weight of a defenseman is 220, and they’re as fast as any players you have on your team, so you have to be a pretty special player if you’re 40 or 50 or 60 pounds less.’’

Rules for Blog Commenting
  • - No profanity, slurs or other offensive language. Replacing letters with symbols does not turn expletives into non-expletives.
  • - Personal attacks against other blog commenters, and/or blatant attempts to antagonize other commenters, are not tolerated. Respectful disagreement is encouraged. Posts that continually express the same singular opinion will be deleted.
  • - Comments that incite political, religious or similar debates will be deleted.
  • - Please do not discuss, or post links to, websites that illegally stream NHL games.
  • - Posting under multiple user names is not allowed. Do not type in all caps. All violations are subject to comment deletion and/or banning of commenters, per the discretion of the blog administrator.
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.