November 30 morning skate notes - LA Kings Insider

Good afternoon from El Segundo, Insiders. The Kings face the San Jose Sharks at Staples Center tonight (7:30 p.m. / NBCSN / KABC 790 / I Heart Radio) and aligned at their morning skate thusly:



-The only change to the lines and pairings appears to be Matt Greene rotating in for Tom Gilbert. Greene took the first rush alongside Kevin Gravel, while Gilbert remained on the ice for extra work with Andy Andreoff (who has not yet been activated), Kyle Clifford, Teddy Purcell and Jeff Zatkoff; Brayden McNabb joined late and handled pucks at the other end of the ice. Peter Budaj left the ice first at the morning skate and is expected to draw the start, which would be his 21st consecutive appearance in net (21 GP; 19 GS).

-Some impressive streaks: Dustin Brown is expected to play his 200th consecutive game tonight. The Kings’ record for consecutive games played is 330, set by Anze Kopitar between March 21, 2007 and March 26, 2011. Meanwhile, on the other bench, Jimminy Jillickers: Patrick Marleau is expected to play his 566th consecutive game, Joe Pavelski his 438th and Brent Burns his 249th.

-Per, the Kings and Sharks are two of the six oldest teams in the league. There’s really not much difference between the “younger” and “older” teams in the league, according to Darryl Sutter, who noted that the discrepancies are often tied to having an extra 36-year-old on the roster, or, on the other end of the spectrum, an extra 19 or 20-year-old. What matters more than age is experience. “Hey, if they’re experienced and won, [that’s good,] right?” Sutter said. “But when those 19-year-olds come in, then the question is, ‘well, how do you stop those great young 19-year-olds?’ Hey, winning experience. Those 19-year-olds haven’t won. They haven’t experienced winning at this level.”

-San Jose enters tonight’s game having defeated Arizona 2-1 in overtime last night at the SAP Center. Martin Jones drew the start and stopped 18 of 19 shots – Mike Smith was much busier at the other end – but should get the nod on the second night of the back-to-back. No other lineup changes are expected, so Tommy Wingels (undisclosed injury), Matt Nieto and Dylan DeMelo are projected as scratches. Tomas Hertl remains out with a knee injury. San Jose is 4-1-0 in its last five games, with a one-goal, home loss to Anaheim on November 26 disrupting their recent stretch of results. While the Kings are rested, the Sharks are nearing the end of a stretch of five games in eight days and 10 games in 18 days.

-Instead of an actual Darryl Sutter quotes post, I’ll work several of his quotes into a pair of stories. One will feature the Kings’ play at home; the other will surround trying to limit Joe Pavelski. Obviously Brent Burns is a catalyst for San Jose’s offensive production, too, and his shots aren’t always directed on net. Given Pavelski’s stellar play around the net in cashing in on tips, screens, rebounds and second chances, Burns is often looking for sticks and caroms off the end boards. “[Burns] may be the premier, next to [Shea] Weber, power play shooter,” Sutter said.

-Look for me as an NHL Network correspondent this afternoon; I’ll have a pair of hits at 2:10 and 4:30 p.m. PT. As for tonight’s NBCSN broadcast, Randy Hahn will provide the play-by-play and Jim Fox will serve as the color commentator. Let’s talk soon, Insiders.

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Adrian Kempe

#9 | 6′ 2″ | 195 lb | Age: 21

Born: September 13, 1996
Birthplace: Kramfors, SWE
Position: LW
Handedness: Left


Kempe was selected by the Kings in the first round (29th overall) in the 2014 NHL Draft.

Alex Iafallo

#19 | 6′ | 185 lb | Age: 23

Born: December 21, 1993
Birthplace: Eden, NY, USA
Position: C
Handedness: Left


Iafallo was signed by the Kings as an unrestricted free agent on April 18, 2017.

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.

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.