King getting closer; he and Doughty travel
Dwight King, who hasn’t played since March 29 due to an undisclosed injury, has practiced for a full week and should be available for Darryl Sutter as the Kings finish up the road portion of the 2013-14 regular season schedule with games in Calgary and Edmonton on Wednesday and Thursday.
“I think the week helped me,” King said. “Obviously to get back on the ice with the team is good and I got a couple reps in before these last couple games.”
On a separate note, Drew Doughty has also made the trip to Alberta, per Lisa Dillman of the LA Times.
Back to King. The hulking forward missed the Pittsburgh game on March 27. He rejoined the team and played 15 minutes and 33 seconds – higher usage than his average time on ice – in the 4-2 win over Winnipeg on March 29 but has not played since. He resumed skating one week ago today, classifying his injury as “just a matter of wear and tear,” downplaying its severity. During line rushes at practice on Monday, King and Jordan Nolan took turns skating to the left of Jeff Carter and Tyler Toffoli.
With Los Angeles locked into the third seed and having little to be gained between now and the first game of the playoffs – other than refining aspects of their game in advance of the playoffs – there is no rush to get King back into the lineup as quickly as possible.
“Obviously everyone knows that we can’t move up or down,” he said. “We just want to fine tune our game, but if there are guys who think a day will help them get ready for the playoffs that’s key. It’s not too often that you get games that are almost like pre-season games where you’re trying to find yourself and continue to build your game and give guys rest. At this point, it’s a mental game. Your body is pretty routine out there for what you bring to a team and that’s important to be feeling good going in.”
Dwight King, acknowledging the larger picture in his recovery: