The Kings’ first post-break practice, this morning, went one hour and included a lot of skating, passing and shooting but very little “battle.” That’s by design. The worst thing that could happen is for a player to strain a groin or hamstring while gearing up to get ready for NHL play again. Here are Terry Murray’s thoughts about how to handle these next few days…
MURRAY: “Well, I’ve been through this so many times, where you get an extended break. I was in Philly during the Olympic break last time. Hitch [Ken Hitchcock] was over there in Torino, so I was in charge of the team in practice. So you just get a feel for it, and you go through it as a player too. You just want to get your legs going, passing the puck, receiving passes, kind of getting your head into the speed of the game again.
“So what we did today was primarily flow passing drills. There was not a lot of resistance and there were no battle drills involved in the practice today. It’s an opportunity to just get your feet underneath yourself and get your legs going. I was very pleased with how everybody was jumping out there. My goodness. We had really good energy. Guys are refreshed and they’re rested and healthy and everyone is excited about getting back at it.”
Question: Based on that experience you had in Philadelphia, are there things you will do differently now, or are you pretty much following the same plan?
MURRAY: “We had an off-ice session there, where we went to a health club, and it was kind of a spinning class. We’re not going to do that. We’re going to have Saturday as a day off the ice. We’ll have an off-ice workout, with the rink tour set up with the youth hockey program. It will be three days on the ice, get a break, do off-ice work, and then get back at it the next two days. That will give us a real good push and get us ready to get going.”