Kovalchuk returns

The timing could have been better for the Kings, but Atlanta’s Ilya Kovalchuk is back and looking strong. Kovalchuk, who missed six games with a broken right foot, returned last night against the Rangers, had one goal and two assists, played 22 minutes, 22 seconds, and looked like he hadn’t missed a beat.

That will present a significant challenge for the Kings, especially on the road, where they can’t make the final line change. And it’s not just Kovalchuk. Watch out for Rich Peverley, whom the Thrashers claimed off waivers last year. Peverley dropped to the third line upon Kovalchuk’s return, but with a team-high 20 points in 15 games, he’s a threat. To read more about the Thrashers going into tonight’s game, click here, and here are Terry Murray’s thoughts about the game…

MURRAY: “It should be a fun game. I watched the Atlanta game last night. Wow. Pretty exciting. A lot of good stuff happening with Atlanta right now. They’ve got good depth and some nice young guys on the back end. We should be entertaining the fans here tonight.”

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