March 12 postgame quotes: John Stevens - LA Kings Insider

On whether he was happy with the commitment to checking:
Very much. Unlike last time out in Vancouver, that was exactly what we didn’t do, and we kind of knew it was going to be a rush game right away and we got behind the eight-ball early, and tonight I thought we did a much better job of not allowing their speed. They do a really good job leaving the zone quickly with zone quickly with speed, and a lot of them, it’s a little bit different. They do it away from the puck, so if you’re not paying attention, they get behind you in a hurry, and I thought our guys did a good job with that. I thought the second period, it wasn’t that we weren’t checking well, it just seemed like field position shifted a little bit where they came at us for a little bit, and long change, second period, but I thought we got it righted again with a much better effort without the puck, for sure.

On Jake Muzzin’s pass to Tyler Toffoli:
Yeah, quite a play, just out the back side, and I thought he saw some open ice there. I was really happy for that Kempe line tonight, and I thought Ty really skated tonight and Tanner made a really strong power move coming out of the corner. We talked to that line, just how much we needed them to play like they did on the road trip earlier in the year and it could really balance out our attack, and I thought they did tonight. That was a great play – a high-end pass, and a high-end finish by Ty.

On shifting the centers among the forward groups:
Juice – Adrian’s done a good job at center all year. We like his speed in the middle of the ice. We thought we’d put Toby back in tonight. He’s been working hard in practice, and we thought his speed would really help us, and it just gives us more veteran players down the middle with speed as well as size. I thought all lines balanced out of that. Kopi was Kopi tonight, I thought Jeff’s line was good with two speedsters with him there, and I thought the Kempe line was really good, and I think the Thompson line gives us really productive minutes, and those guys are really solid on the penalty kill, so I really thought the changes evened out our minutes, and we got some quality time from all four lines.

On whether Anze Kopitar’s goal was representative of doing the “little things”:
Yeah, I thought there was a period of time there, Kopi, he’s been a dominant player at times this year and he probably could’ve been rewarded with a little more offensive output there because he was around the net a lot, but Kopi, I think he’s an elite player in the league on both sides of the puck, and we need him to be our leader in terms of the team game and leading the charge in the checking game, and he’s done that all year for us, so we’re going to need him to continue to do that. [Reporter: Does Kopi need votes for MVP?] Not from me. He’s got my vote already. It’s interesting you say that. I’m surprised – I don’t read the paper much, though, so maybe it’s been out there, but I haven’t heard a lot of talk about it. I don’t know why he wouldn’t be in the conversation, because he’s been as important to our team as any other player in the league has been to their team.

-Lead photo via Adam Pantozzi/NHLI

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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.