October 21 postgame quotes: John Stevens - LA Kings Insider

On the impact of Anze Kopitar’s line in the win:
Well, I think our leaders are our leaders. Kopi and Brownie and Drew, Muzz, Marty – I mean, we got a lot of big efforts from those guys, exactly what you need. This is a tough environment to come in. They’ve got last change, a very good hockey team, and they’re deep. The fact that they’re deep, we needed to get contributions from everybody, but jeez, the Kopitar line, not only were they good defensively, they carried the load offensively, and it was kind of an up-and-down game, but they stayed with it. It’s not surprising that they were the ones that put the puck in at the end of the game. It’s just really good to see from those guys. I think they’ve taken a leadership role from Day 1, and they certainly came up big here tonight.

On what was expressed or reinforced after the teams combined for five first period goals:
We’re well aware of what they’re doing. Their defense are a huge part of their team, they’re an extremely competitive team down low, and we allowed their defense to be too much a part of the rush. The one goal they jumped by us, and the plays around the net and below the goal line, it’s a men’s game out there, and you’ve got to dig in and embrace the physical challenge. So that’s what we talked about. We really told the guys, ‘listen, we’re down 1-0, really, when you look at it, on the road. Let’s go out and have a good second period and set ourselves up to win a game on the road.’ That was the message. We knew we could be better. We wanted to tighten up a little bit, and we knew we had to.

On whether anything is “evolving” now that the team is 6-0-1:
No, not really. I don’t really feel anything ‘evolving.’ We told the guys, ‘we’ve got to be honest with ourselves.’ We did lots of good things tonight, but there’s lots of things we need to get better at, and that’s what we have to be. We have to reset every game here and understand that we gave up four goals tonight, and you usually don’t win when you give up four goals. So we’ve got to learn from that. We’ve got some really good offensive teams along this trip here, and I think at the end of the day, we told our guys a win is a win, and I think the guys found a way to win, and that’s the most important thing, and they stayed with the program and played 60 minutes to do that. But I think every game we play, we’ve got to sit back and be realistic and say, ‘this is what we did well, let’s continue to do well, and these are the things we need to improve on.’

On whether the challenges at the start were derived from Jeff Carter’s absence:
I don’t think it had anything to do with adjusting without Carter. If anything, you travel west to east, it’s a three-hour time change and your body clock’s on a three-hour difference. You do what you can to get acclimated, but at the end of the day it’s a three-hour time change, and I thought the guys that moved up in the lineup did a really good job. I thought we got some really quality minutes out of Adrian Kempe and Brooks Laich, so I don’t think the start had anything to do with that.

On Brooks Laich’s Kings debut:
Well, it’s a tough situation for him coming into that environment, but it’s what we thought. He’s a good, well-rounded player. He checks well, he creates some scoring chances, he almost had one in the third period. Real positive guy, so to have a veteran guy in the lineup like that was a real bonus for us.

-Lead photo via Jamie Sabau/NHLI

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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.