Is it time for the Kings’ defensemen to take the bull by the horns? It’s increasingly clear that the forwards aren’t getting it done, in terms of scoring, and the Kings’ system, for several years running, has been based around a safety-first mentality. Is it time to have the defensemen take more chances, even if it runs the risk of exposing the Kings a bit on the other side? A previous post discussed Jack Johnson’s game, and it was noted this morning that Drew Doughty also has the ability to carry the puck into the offensive zone and, potentially, create some chaos. Of course, if things go wrong with the puck on Doughty’s stick, it can go the other way quickly, but it might be time to start taking that risk a bit more often. Darryl Sutter was asked this morning about Doughty being more active with the puck.
SUTTER: “Drew walks that line, of trying to do too much himself or becoming a part of it. When he’s really effective, he’s a part of it. When he’s trying to do too much himself, then it becomes… When you look at young guys who are really talented, predictable and unpredictable, it’s good if the other team thinks they’re unpredictable and your own team should think they’re predictable.”
In a follow-up question, Sutter said he didn’t put any blame on Doughty for being more active with the puck.
SUTTER: “Not at all. That’s a top-end guy who cares and tries to maximize what he does. There’s no blame there. It’s just how he channels it. Not many guys like that in this league. When that whole package comes together, that’s going to be a pretty special guy.”