Left-handed defenseman Kevin Gravel has been recalled from AHL-Ontario, the Kings announced on Thursday morning.
The 24-year-old Gravel was one of the last cuts out of Kings camp and appeared in five NHL games with the club last season. He has two assists in six games for the Reign, who are 3-1-2-0.
A move was imminent as the Kings wait on the result of an 11 a.m. PT disciplinary hearing for Tom Gilbert regarding his hit on the Ducks’ Nick Ritchie from Tuesday night. The Reign were set to fly to Tucson for games of their own this morning. Also related to the recall, Brayden McNabb (upper-body) is on injured reserve and the Kings had yet to make a move to add to their blue line depth after briefly recalling Rob Scuderi before sending him back to Ontario the following day to maximize the benefits of long-term injured reserve. The Kings were down to six defensemen prior to Gilbert’s disciplinary hearing, so a move this week was already being considered.
Gravel had one assist, 11 shots on goal and a minus-two rating in four preseason games. The Kingsford, Michigan native, who is waiver exempt this season, was assigned to Ontario as part of the final cuts of training camp. In conversations over the summer, the front office has been coolly high on Gravel, who makes safe plays and showed in his five-game stint last season that he was able to play at a raised pace while up with the parent club.
At the morning skate in advance of Thursday’s game against the Pittsburgh Penguins (7:30 p.m. / FOX Sports West / FOX Sports GO / KABC 790 / I Heart Radio), Gravel skated to the left of Alec Martinez.
The 6-foot-4 212-pound Gravel is a fifth-round pick (148th overall) of the Kings in the 2010 NHL Draft. He, like center Nic Dowd, played collegiately at St. Cloud State. Gravel, who was held without a point in five games last season, recorded two assists and a 50.6% Corsi-for rating.